There are three key ways to understand the value of your property and keeping them in mind makes it easier to understand how you can add value to your investment down the track.
Those three elements are Land, Dwelling and Extras. Let’s step through each of these:
In some respects, there’s not much you can do about the land. Your location, size and elevation are locked in but it pays to be mindful of the size, shape and scope of your land when you buy.
Consider how you can use the land to its best advantage. Can you improve access to the property, or enhance its privacy, or how it can be used with landscaping?
Other things to consider are whether you can add a swimming pool, or whether there is room for a small cabin and call it a home office, or granny flat. Such an approach can offer a valuable payback.
The value of your dwelling is determined by its age, materials and state of repair. While there’s not much you can do about the age of your property, you can modernise the exterior, especially the frontage. In all probability, a fresh coat of paint and new gutters will improve appearances, but there are also new options for cladding including weatherboard, colourbond and traditional methods like rendering to make changes that are more dramatic.
Internally, look for properties that have great potential. Today’s buyers embrace open-plan living and love kitchens that flow into the living room and ideally out into the garden The number of bedrooms is always critical, so if you have one doubling up as an office or handicraft room, return it to its original purpose.
Upgrades to kitchens and bathrooms are favourite improvements and are well worth the effort if you manage the budget carefully. New flooring is an oft-forgotten asset that can transform a home. Look at ways you can use flooring to create a sense of flow from room to room.
The extras of a home are those elements that create a ‘wow’ factor and can be inside or outside the home.
A great entertaining area is a winner with buyers at the moment. Swimming pools and spas go down well with young families, while others see them as a maintenance burden. So, before investing in ‘wows’ either be sure you’ll personally get a lot of value out of the improvement or be clear about the needs of your potential market . Inside, new appliances can also impress. Make sure they’re all the same brand and in the same style. Stainless steel is still a hot look.
If you can obtain planning permission for an additional storey or an extension, then you should consider if buyers will reward you for this additional cost and work. When considering changes like this, it can pay to talk to your local real estate agent as we can advise on the latest buyer trends to help you assess the future value they may achieve.