Here are some great tips to improve your home in more ways than one.
Research and planning...
1. When you're planning your budget the last thing you want to do is spend money unnecessarily on your home so it's worth researching which improvements will boost your home's value and those which won’t.
2. An extension could add between 10 and 50 percent to the value of your home, depending on its size and how well it's finished - the key is to get it right.
Plenty of rooms but a tiny kitchen?
Add on a downstairs extension. Got a huge garden but a small house? Build upwards to create the family home of your dreams. A loft conversion could add up to 10 per cent to the value of your home and, unlike a ground floor extension; it won't steal space from the garden. The ideal? Get a bedroom and extra bathroom up there.
In the kitchen...
3. Planning a new kitchen is an absolute must for anyone seriously looking to boost their home's value - adding up to as much as 10 per cent in value to your home.
It's the first thing a potential buyer will look for if you’re looking to sell in the future, and it's also the room you're likely to spend most of your time in, particularly if it is a kitchen and living space all in one. The secret? Pick one that matches the style of your home - so choose a contemporary kitchen for a modern home, or something more traditional for a period property.
Replacing your kitchen doors and old appliances with new, good quality appliances will go a long way to giving your kitchen that just-renovated feel, but at a fraction of the cost while replacing kitchen wall tiles and worktops will instantly smarten up a tatty kitchen, as will new hard flooring throughout.
In the bathroom...
4. Squeezing in an en suite bathroom could add up a further five percent to the value of your home. The best bet is to put one into - or steal space from - a large bedroom. Revamping your bathroom will add to the appeal of your home. You needn’t hire a plumber if you’re a competent DIYer – fitting a new sink isn’t as hard as you’d think, while re-tiling the walls and floor, grouting and sealing around a basin or bath is easy too.
5. Redecorating is an easy - and not necessarily expensive - way to improve your home. Paint is the cheapest way – and there are lots of easy to live with, space-enhancing colour schemes to choose from. With a little practice, anyone can create their own paint effects in a colour scheme to match their taste.
Stenciling is really making a credit crunch comeback, too, because it can create an expensive look at a minimal cost.
Carpets, repairs and saving energy...
6. Replacing outdated carpets can transform a room instantly. Current trends are bold and patterned, but go for something classic and easy to live with instead.
7. Dealing with problems your house has while you’re staying put makes sense – trying to do so in the run up to putting it on the market will be stressful and pricey. Instead, spend money now and sort out plumbing issues. Identify and deal with damp and restore fittings and fixtures if need be.
8. Find ways to save energy and use extra cash on eco-friendly improvements. Do this by improving insulation in your home. The bonus? You’ll cut your electricity bill!
9. Turning a neglected plot into a glamorous garden can have a real impact on your home and how you feel about it. You needn’t spend a fortune – just a few clever ideas and regular maintenance can do the trick.
10. If you have a large garden and want to add a little more indoor space without building an extension, why not consider an outdoor room? This will give you space for anything from a home office to an extra lounging area, to somewhere for the kids to play. Of course, you might want to spruce up your garden by simply adding a new garden dining set, whether wooden, metal or funky and contemporary. The only effort involved is paying for it.
Source: Tips from Janice Anderssen: Women24's Decor and DIY expert. Visit www.homedzine.co.za for more.