Tips on how to add value to your home

IF you haven’t got a winning ticket and are still thinking of improving your house here are the top five things you can do and the worst five things.

Do

Redecorating: on a pound-per-pound basis, this is probably the cheapest item of home improvement you can pay for. Yet the right paint job can add up to 10% to the final value of your home

An extra bathroom can add 5% to the value of your home, as long as it is not built at the expense of a bedroom. If the property is fairly large and has upwards of five bedrooms with one bathroom, you stand to gain. If it means moving from three bedrooms to two, don’t do it.

Garages are sought-after features. Build correctly, they can add up to 5% to the value of a home. At the very least, they usually recoup an investment.

Lofts, especially those which add an extra room and maybe even a separate bath or shower room, can add upwards of 10% to the value of a home, as long as they are in keeping with the rest of the home and built by specialists within all appropriate planning rules. The aim is to make them a virtually indistinguishable part of the rest of the property.

Central heating system replacement: they may be expensive and will not necessarily add to the value of your home. But they are vital to holding up the sale price of your property. And in the meantime, they will recoup their cost through lower energy bills.

Don't

Plastic double-glazing. On all but the most modern homes, this will not only cost thousands – but almost certainly knock thousands off the value of your home, especially if all other properties in the area don’t have it. Secondary glazing on the inside of existing windows may be preferable for a period home with original features.

Creating off-road parking for a car directly outside your home. Yes, it’s probably safer, but you have destroyed a chunk of your front garden and made the front of your house much less attractive. This can take up to £5,000 off the best asking price. If you need to do it, try to do it at the side of the property.

A new kitchen is a popular home improvement but homeowners are unlikely to get back more than their original investment. In some cases, you will actually lose money. But it may help underpin the right asking price.

Adding a third bathroom to a two-bath house is a no-no, unless you don’t care about ever recouping your investment. In effect, you have just waved goodbye to between £5,000 and £10,000.

New carpets. Surprisingly, new carpets add nothing to the value of a home. In other words, you spend £3,000 carpeting your home from top to bottom and it is worth no more at the end of the day than it was before. That said, if the previous carpet was in a terrible state, a new one will allow you to justify the asking price. In which case, go for the cheapest –neutral – carpet you can find