Ask The Expert

With his new book now out, Phil Spencer explains what adding value to your home really means

In a competitive market, it is important to understand what adding value is all about. It can mean anything from simple DIY projects or insulating the loft, to coming up with a well-planned and well-executed extension. Some projects, however, offer a more clear-cut return than others.

New central heating, for example, usually pays for itself, and a homeowner is almost guaranteed to earn a profit when they sell. The cost to install central heating ranges from £1,000 to £3,000 depending on the system you choose, but the value added can be as much as £5,000.

Many homeowners waste valuable time and money on gimmicks, such as installing expensive gadgets, when they could be better off concentrating on the infrastructure. Is it really a good idea to install that costly cappuccino maker, for instance, when you haven’t fitted a good working boiler or decent flooring? What about the value added by sprucing up the bathroom and losing that avocado suite with gold taps?

In the complicated world of home improvements, when planning where to focus your energy and how best to spend your budget, it is every bit as important to know what not to do. Not everything adds value in cash terms, but some ideas could make your house easier to sell. My book, Adding Value to Your Home, will help you understand what could work best for you, and what will make the overall feel of a house more valuable in the eyes of its owner – and, one day, in the eyes of a potential buyer.

Phil Spencer’s Adding Value to Your Home is out now, £12.99

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