Build for world we live in

Home improvement 'is a balancing act'

Individuals intent on carrying out DIY projects to boost the value of their property have been advised they must weigh up their own personal tastes with that of others in order to maximise the resale potential of their home.

Anna-Marie DeSouza, editor of Build It + Home Improvement magazine, said people need to be sensible when carrying out home improvement projects, as it is easy to get carried away and start spending on projects that will ultimately not add a great deal of value.

She commented: "It's a balancing act that you can do yourself. Any home improvement work is going to add value to your home, but of course you need to offset that with the cost you've laid out to do it.

"You need to think about what you're going to use and what people are going to be looking for when you sell on the home, and balance those against each other."

However, Ms DeSouza added that in the case of people taking on projects to make their property more liveable - and if they are planning to stay in the home for the long term - then it should not all be about the financial gains that improvements can bring, as these projects are all about lifestyle and comfort.

According to the latest HSBC Home Improvement Survey, the value of making improvements to a property has fallen in recent years, with building works now having less of an impact on the overall worth of a home.

The organisation's figures revealed that over the last 12 months, some of the most common home improvement works have seen lower returns. For example, extending a room added an average of £15,665 to home's value, but this was three per cent down on 2011.

However, one area where returns have seen gains has been in the construction of a conservatory, which added £9,420 on average to the value of a home - up by 14 per cent. 

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