Whether you’re planning to sell your home next year or selling up is the furthest thing from your mind, homeowners shouldn’t stop thinking about the ways they can add value to their property, according to the experts.
“It’s extremely important,” said Kahlia Cordony, property stylist and founder of the Cordony Group. “I mean, most of the time, a property is someone’s biggest asset so you want to ensure that when you’re ready to sell it, you’ll get the biggest value that you can.”
But it’s not just about the money, she explained. You want to make changes that will benefit your time in the home.
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“We meet people at all different times in their lives,” Cordony said. “They might be going: ‘We’re ready to sell in maybe two years’ time or we might be ready to sell in 10 years’ time.
“‘We really want to think about what it is that we need to do to the house for, first of all, functionality for ourselves and to obviously enjoy the place, but also how will that look when we’re at the point of selling, whenever that might be’.”
So, whether it’s your first home or you’re newly married or having babies or even downsizing, finding ways to add value to your home should be on top of your radar.
Take action now with these five tips to transform your house into a home and boost your property’s price at any stage.
1. Keep up with maintenance
Before you start tearing down walls and adding that deck you’ve always dreamed of, first and foremost is nurturing your home’s current status by keeping up with the maintenance.
“This is something that people tend to forget because life gets busy,” Cordony said. “But there’s no point in adding and doing additions to your property if you’re not actually maintaining what you’ve got because you could have problems down the line if you’re not looking at those issues.”
Cordony suggests conducting your own building report as if you were a new buyer: “What are the areas that come up as a concern that you need to maintain?”
2. Refresh bathrooms and kitchens
If a full bathroom renovation isn’t on the cards, it doesn’t take much to spruce up one of your home’s most used rooms, according to Cordony.
“It could just be updating your vanities or your tapware or your shower screens if you’ve got a good working bathroom or kitchen,” she said.
While refreshing cabinetry in the kitchen isn’t too tricky either. “Consider doing a resurface of all the cabinetry and even the bench tops, or put a stone bench top in along with new tapware, a new sink and a new splashback.
“It’s a third of the cost but would increase the value significantly.”
3. Don’t follow trends
In Cordony’s words, don’t get “too hell-bent on trends”.
“I think there’s a really good sort of medium between not using something that’s going to be really permanent,” she said.
“So, for instance, we hope that you wouldn’t paint a wall pink because that colour, probably in a year’s time, is going to fade out and then you’ll have another colour scheme or seasonal change coming through. Focus on something that has more of a timeless neutral kind of feel that’s going to last.”
4. Focus on functionality
When it comes to changing up the floor plan, Cordony says a lot of people are really looking for that master suite with a walk-in wardrobe and ensuite. While others are looking for a suite with a study or office within it as well.
“So, if you can extend that master room into creating a walk-in wardrobe and ensuite, that’s also another big thing that can actually add value to the property because the parents are then basically able to have their own retreat and getaway space,” she said.
“Similarly, another thing we’re seeing a lot of is guest bedrooms. A guest bedroom is usually at the front of the house or near an entryway so that those who use the room can come in and out as they need to. It also often has a wardrobe and ensuite so it’s servicing people that are coming and staying in the house, or another generation in the house.”
5. Expand open-plan living
“Open plans are a really big thing still,” Cordony said.
Whether it’s knocking down a wall or adding a deck and taking your living room outside, the options are endless.
“I think people like the inclusiveness of the whole situation,” the property stylist explained. “So you could have a few different groups going on in different spaces, but everyone’s still kind of there and enjoying the vibe with each other.
“I think, especially after COVID and having to have been so segregated in our own houses, that sense of being together at the moment is huge. So, I think it’s really nice, being able to come together and being able to do that safely as well. It’s really wonderful.”