As annual house price growth slows to the lowest rate in four years, homeowners need to do everything they can to boost the value of their property and buck the trend.
Figures released by Halifax earlier this month show a 0.2 per cent drop in house prices over the last three months. It’s the fourth successive quarterly fall in prices, a trend that hasn’t happened since 2012.
While this may be good news for those wanting to get their feet on the first rung of the property ladder, it’s a blow to people either thinking about, or in the process of, selling up.
Steve Glover, managing director at designer kitchen company Laurence Campbell, said there were things households could do to boost the value of their homes in difficult conditions.
“When the market is getting tougher, you need your house to appeal to as many people as possible. No one wants to sell their home for anything less than optimum value,” he said.
“The other option is to hold out for the right price, but all the time the property is on the market, your life is on hold.”
Halifax, which has been compiling its House Price Index since 1983, found the number of homes currently for sale was low, with average stock levels on estate agents’ books down marginally in many places, and at all time low in others.
More positively, this means making your house stand out from the crowd is relatively easy, if you know where to start, said Steve.
Most people looking to buy just want to move in, unpack their boxes and have a cup of tea, so simple things like decluttering, making the garden look nice and giving your home a fresh coat of paint can go a long way to increasing the house’s value.
Fixing any “niggles”, like loose carpets and broken door knobs, also helps people imagine living there.
Investing in improvements can make all the difference between your house selling quickly and it sitting on the market, said Steve.
“Kitchens sell houses. If you have an updated, fashionable kitchen you are going to get more viewings because your house is going to appeal to more people. It’s one less thing for people to think about having to change when they move in,” he said.
“It will put you one step ahead of other people. If you spend £7,000 on a kitchen it can increase the value of your home by £15,000 to £20,000.”
To find out how a new kitchen could boost the saleability of your home, speak to the team at Laurence Campbell on 0800 075 76 77 or go to http://www.laurencecampbell.co.uk/