Yorkshire buyers are savvy spenders on home improvements

Yorkshire homeowners spend nearly £7,000 on improvements to their property in the first year, according to new research. The data was collected by loans broker Norton Finance as part of its latest Home Improvements Report.A total of 1,000 UK homeowners who had bought a house in the last five years were asked to reveal how they budgeted and prioritised any extra spending in the first 12 months after moving in.The study found that homeowners in Yorkshire and the Humber were among the savviest of all – spending an average of £6,832. This compared to an average figure of £8,044 across England, excluding London.Across the UK, only Scottish homeowners spent less at an average of £6,648.Paul Stringer, Managing Director at Norton Finance, said: “After the years of saving, the months of paperwork and the stress of moving, the feeling you get when you finally have the keys to your new home is unlike anything else. However, once you’ve moved in there’s still plenty to do and think about regarding your new home.“It’s easy to get carried away, but those in the know always suggest living in your new home for a while before embarking on major revamps. Once you’ve lived somewhere, you’re more likely to know what’s a priority and which improvements will make the biggest difference.”When it comes to where Yorkshire homeowners choose to invest their money, it’s perhapsunsurprising that improvements to bathrooms and kitchens top the list. New furniture is another popular choice, while energy-saving measures also make the top five – reflecting the level-headed approach favoured by Yorkshire homeowners.Top five average spends on property improvements by new homeowners in Yorkshire and the Humber are: bathroom improvements - £844.06; kitchen improvements - £750.28; new furniture - £725.84; energy saving - £690.15 and flooring - £577.13.While these improvements to the home were top in terms of highest spend, putting a personal touch on a property headed the list in terms of priorities for homeowners in Yorkshire.Mirroring the national trend, homeowners in God’s Own County picked painting and decorating as their number one most important home improvement. This was followed by new furniture, new lights, flooring and gardening.While these priorities are broadly in line with overall trends across the nation, having a well-lit home emerged as being more important for people in the region, ranking as the third most popular property improvement, three places higher than the national average.As well as being savvy spenders, Yorkshire homeowners also showed themselves to be dab hands in terms of sticking to a budget.Having set themselves an average budget of £7,392, Yorkshire homeowners only spent an average £6,832, resulting in a saving of £560. This is in stark contrast to the East Midlands, where homeowners overspent on their budget to the tune of more than £800.“Sometimes the excitement of the blank canvas and walls to stamp their personality into this space can get the better of people’s budgeting skills, leading to unplanned spending,” said Paul Stringer.“Clearly Yorkshire homeowners are careful planners. While many home improvement projects can quickly spiral out of control, Yorkshire homeowners actually came in below budget – which is no mean feat.”Across the country, London saw the highest first-year outlay, with homeowners spending an average of almost £25,000 within the first year of moving in. The South East was next highest, followed by the North West.Average first-year spending on home improvements by region areLondon - £24,871; South East - £9,739; North West - £9,530; North East - £8,650; South West - £8,508; Wales - £8,093; East of England - £7,443; West Midlands - £7,392; Yorkshire and the Humber - £6,832; Scotland - £6,648.Paul Stringer added: “We hope that the findings of our research will provide some insight into how the first year of owning a home can feel and how a first year might look like in terms of spending.This, in turn, could help new homeowners plan and budget more effectively.”You can read the full Home Improvements Report 2019 by Norton Financeat https://www.nortonfinance.co.uk/know-how/financial-news/home-improvements-report-2019

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