Considering updating your property? Sam Funnell from Fine & Country Rugby provides some tips on worthwhile renovations and what to think about.

Have you been inspired by the plethora of renovation programmes on television that show miraculous upgrades to properties? Before you leap into action, a little time spent planning and setting a budget will ensure you avoid many of the pitfalls awaiting the unwary.

Not all renovations will make a tidy profit when it comes to selling your property, with some projects costing more than they return. It is generally agreed, however, that one of the top renovations for profit is updating or replacing a kitchen. While there are a range of modular kitchens that can be a cost-effective and fast way to update a property, the cost of a basic kitchen supplied and installed by a custom kitchen builder may not be significantly more expensive and can reduce the stress of fitting set sizes into a custom space.

To successfully present a property for sale, it is important for a potential buyer to make an emotional connection with the lifestyle. Designing an area to be liveable, rather than to feel like an empty space, provides greater appeal. Any renovation, however, must be consistent. For example, installing an expensive oven with DIY cupboards doesn’t work.

Updating or adding bathrooms can be a worthwhile renovation to undertake. Both buyers and tenants expect modern and up-to-date bathrooms with stylish fixtures and fittings. Setting an appropriate budget for a bathroom renovation is especially important, as there are so many components it is easy to over capitalise. There is also no point in spending all your budget on installing designer kitchens and bathrooms and neglecting the rest of the property. It is always a preferable renovation strategy to bring the entire home up to a set standard, rather than spending all of your resources on one room.

One of the most powerful and cost-effective renovation tools is paint. A coat of paint in a contemporary colour scheme can instantly refresh a tired property.

Areas to take care with include landscaping. It is easy to spend money on landscaping a garden, which might add to the street appeal, but buyers will often factor in maintenance costs before making an offer and it is unlikely the expense will add significant resale value. Adding a pool to a property is also unlikely to add significant value, although it can be a beneficial lifestyle choice if you intend to use the pool before selling. While an inground pool might be an attractive feature for some buyers, bear in mind it may decrease the attractiveness for those who see it as an additional maintenance cost.

A general rule of thumb is to set a renovation budget at five percent of the value if you are thinking of selling. If you intend to occupy the property for five years or more, a seven percent budget is appropriate, as this will be recouped in capital value.

For advice on selling or buying property, please contact Fine & Country Rugby on 01788 820062 or visit