Home improvements that can add value to your home

Giving your property a makeover can be an exciting time for homeowners that can also add value to your biggest asset.

However, before you call in the tradies, there are issues to consider first, such as your budget and lifestyle requirements. You may even need to organise some home improvement financing with your lender.

It is also essential any improvements enhance your property’s value, especially if you’re planning to sell any time soon. For example, one leading consumer advocate estimates a quality bathroom improvement can add as much as 10% to the value of a home.

Angus Raine, Executive Chairman, of the Raine & Horne[i] property group, advises that estimating the extra value home improvements is an inexact science. “Generally, home improvements in the short-term are linked to lifestyle considerations.

“However, for those with a plan to sell, smart home improvements can attract more buyer eyeballs to a property, especially in neighbourhoods where many homes are similar.”

Angus continues, “Your property needs to make as much noise as possible, so buyers will talk about it rather than the competition on Saturday night after 4 or 5 open for inspections.”

Apart from adding value, there is the matter of ‘over capitalising’ which occurs when a home improvement costs more than the value it adds. To avoid overcapitalising, Angus advises homeowners to have their property appraised by a real estate agent before starting any improvements whether it is a new kitchen or an extra room. “Once you know how much your home is worth, you can determine how much you want to spend on home improvements to reduce the chances of overcapitalising.”

Spicing up the kitchen

Many experts advise the kitchen is the first room buyers check out and therefore the perfect place to add some value. Renovating your kitchen might involve replacing your splashbacks, benchtops, cabinets, and door handles, Angus advises. Sometimes, even some fresh paint is enough to spruce up the kitchen, while some shiny new and improved appliances can increase kitchen appeal.

If you have the financial capacity, you could consider remodelling the entire kitchen. A full kitchen makeover can cost between $15,000 and $43,000, according to Archicentre[ii], a national provider of professional and independent building design, inspection, and advice. In some cases, a revamped kitchen can add enormous appeal and value to a property, depending on a range of factors including the design, flooring, finishes and fixtures, lighting and the appliances you choose.

Fresh bathroom makeover

If there is another room that could help improve the appeal of your home, it’s the bathroom. Nor does it need to cost an arm or leg to revive the bathroom. Retiling, updating handles and changing cabinet tops can contribute to a bathroom refresh. Blast from the past, wallpaper is also back in vogue, advises Angus.

With appropriate planning and expertise, a more thorough bathroom renovation, which, according to Archicentre, can cost between $12,000 - $27,000 can potentially improve a property’s value. An estimate from leading consumer advocacy group Choice suggests a bathroom refresh could add up to 10% to the value of your home over time[iii].

A study or home office can add value

Apart from bathroom wallpaper, work from home (WFH) is probably the biggest single trend to impact the housing market in 2020. In fact, at last count, almost 3.5 million of us work from home in our main job or business, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)[iv].

The home office could be a distinct room, or a portion of a space set aside within your home for work and study. If you don’t have some spare space, you could consider adding a study or home office as an extra bedroom to your property. Additional rooms generally translate to higher sales prices for a property, and by anywhere between $50,000 and $80,000[v] for a home valued between $500,000 - $1 million.

Granny flats

If your local council allows it, adding a granny flat might be a more sensible way to provide a WFH environment. “Better still, by building a granny flat, you won’t have to make expensive structural changes to your existing property,” says Angus.

He adds, “Moreover, a granny flat can add great value, especially as it will provide a separate entrance that ensures you can maintain a natural division between work and family life.”

There are also tax deductions available for those businesses who operate from home, while the granny flat may be a source of extra income if it is made available for rent in the future. Granny flats can cost anywhere from around $70,000 to $200,000, according to comparison website Canstar[vi].

Financing your dream improvements

If you have been daydreaming about renovating or expanding your home, adding a swimming pool or upgrading your bathroom or kitchen, check out our unsecured Home Improvement Loan.

With loans starting from as little as $1,000 and competitive interest rates, our Home Improvement Loan can help turn your renovation dream into reality. Apply online at www.communityfirst.com.au/ or call us today on 1300 13 22 77.


Last updated: 05 February 2021

The information contained in this article is only correct at the point of time of publication. It is general information and has been prepared without taking into account your personal circumstances, objectives or needs. Please consider if this information is right for you before making a decision to acquire any product.

[i] https://www.raineandhorne.com.au/our-team/angus-raine

[ii] https://www.archicentreaustralia.com.au/wp-content/uploads/CostGuide-202...

[iii] https://www.choice.com.au/home-improvement/building-and-renovating/desig...

[iv] https://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mediareleasesbyCatalogue/630DCF813FED0E0CCA258113001878F2?OpenDocument#:~:text=Almost%20a%20third%20(3.5%20million,Bureau%20of%20Statistics%20(ABS).&text=%22A%20further%2020%20per%20cent,to%20pay%20rent%20or%20overheads.%22

[v] https://www.realestate.com.au/advice/how-much-new-bedroom-add-value-home....

[vi] https://www.canstar.com.au/home-loans/granny-flat-cost/

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