How to splash any saved cash

Despite some 9 million workers being furloughed on 80% of their salary during the peak of the first Coronavirus lockdown, Brits have managed to save an extra 20% of their disposable income and have been spending it on home improvements. 

The inability to go on holiday, frequent the pubs or spend their spare cash on leisure and entertainment has resulted in adults putting away £700 per month on average. And with more time at home, 85% of residents chose to carry out some DIY. 

The 2020 Renovation Nation Report found that UK homeowners spent an average of £4,000 each on home renovations, with 27% of them hoping to increase the value of their properties. It’s great news for buyers too, because not only will they likely be able to find a newly renovated property to buy but if they’re quick, they could save up to £15,000 on stamp duty too! 

While the majority of home improvement projects focussed on the garden, living room and bedroom, it was home gyms and bars that topped the wish list. But what types of improvements really add value to a property? 

When novelties become necessities

With buyer and renter priorities changing, the good news is that yes, a home gym or bar could in theory increase the value of your property, as buyers demand more leisure space. 

Although not specific about the uses, it’s clear from numerous studies that post-pandemic home movers want more space, both inside and out. What were once added extras or novelties are now becoming necessities. 

If you invest in creating more space in your property, you or future buyers could use that space as you see fit, including for a home gym or personal pub. 

The Telegraph reported in 2018 that an outbuilding that costs an average of £6,653 could add up to £35,611 to a property.  A conservatory will increase the value by 5%, while a loft conversion could add 15% to your home’s sale price. 

This extra space could have multiple uses from home offices and playrooms to gyms, bars and exclusive dining areas.   

The classics still top the bill

According to research from, kitchens and bathrooms remain two of the top rooms to renovate at an average cost of £5,129 and £3,340, respectively. They will both add between 4% and 8% to the value of a property, giving one of the best returns on investment. 

Such features are also sought-after by potential buyers. As reported by Property Mark, 65% of homeowners renovate kitchens before putting their property on the market and 29% of new homes sold in 2019 had a new bathroom fitted. So, if you’re looking to sell, these two projects should be a priority. If not, it’s still a good investment for the future. 

First impressions count too, as we all know, so installing a new front door and double glazing are also popular home renovations. In 2020, there was at least a 50% increase in these keyword search terms.  

There are many other ways you can add value to your home but if your key motivation is selling, then it’s definitely worth reviewing The Rated People Home Improvement Trends Report, which details 15 property features that attract the most buyers. 

Cash in the bank? Don’t delay

If you’ve got cash burning a hole in your pocket and want to improve the value of your property, whether you’re planning on selling or simply creating your dream home, the time to act is now. Anecdotal evidence suggests that if you’re looking to engage any kind of trade professional, they are busier than ever! 

If you would prefer to spend any cash saved on moving to an already-improved property, get in touch for a list of available properties for sale and to rent. Don’t forget, you can save up to £15,000 in stamp duty costs if you complete on a  purchase by 31st March 2021.