Estate agents and homeowners differ on home improvements

Research from Alliance & Leicester Personal Loans shows that consumers and estate agents are differing on their views on the type of home improvements that will add value to a property.

To add value, estate agents are more likely to favour improvements that create space or improve decoration, whereas consumers are more likely to support cosmetic improvements such as garden makeovers or hot tubs.

Seven out of 10 estate agents say by far the best improvement to increase the value of your home is to add extra living space downstairs, yet only 50% of UK adults see the value of this work. According to agents, the next best improvements are a new kitchen, extra bedroom or study, and garage.

Far fewer consumers agree. Consumers are also less likely to agree that internal, external decoration or replacing period features will add value.

More consumers than estate agents believe their property value will soar if they add a conservatory, have a garden makeover or even install a hot tub or swimming pool. Around 5% of adults believe a hot tub or a swimming pool would add value to their property, while less than 1% of estate agents agree.

Most UK adults are more concerned about the damage that poorly fitted tiling, cheap laminate flooring, paved over gardens and woodchip walls might do to value, whereas many estate agents feel these to be the least important.

Richard Al-Dabbagh, senior marketing manager for loans at Alliance & Leicester, says: “Whatever we may think of them, estate agents are the experts when it comes to what helps or harms a sale. They conduct valuations of properties on a daily basis so they know what will deter most potential buyers.”