Boost the value of your home

Posted on: 16 August 2010 by Mark O'haire

There are many external factors which can add thousands to the value of a property. Here’s four ideas that can add value to your home.

Londoners pay a massive premium to live near a train station. But there are many external factors which can add thousands to the value of a property.

When we consider which property to buy, there are all sorts of factors about the property itself which influence how much we are willing to pay for it.

Does it have the right number of bedrooms? Are they of a decent size? Is there a garden, and somewhere to park the car? Is there an option to extend the property to add rooms as the family grows?

However, there are just as many external factors to take into account – the old adage of location, location, location really does apply. And it’s incredible just how much of a difference those external factors can make to the property’s value.

1) Good transport links

A new study by Nationwide Building Society has found that London properties situated close to an Underground or National Rail station can see their value jump by a frankly astonishing £20,000.

According to the mutual, homes located within 500 metres of a station will be around 7.2% more expensive than an identical property 1,500 metres from the station, the equivalent of £20,300. Properties found within 750 metres will carry a 5.2% premium, 1,000 metres a 3.4% premium and 1,250 metres a 1.6% premium.

Part of the reason this impact is so pronounced is London’s reliance on trains – more than a third of Londoners (34%) rely on them to get to work every day, compared to just 8% across Great Britain.

However, while trains may not have a massive impact on prices outside of the capital, there are plenty of other factors that do.

2) Good schools

Living near a decent school is a motivating factor for many when they look to buy a home, for the simple reason that they want their children to benefit from a good education. However, schools of a high standard can also add some serious cash to the property's value.

According to a study last year, again by Nationwide, living near a top-performing primary school – in other words, one which achieved a 100% attainment rate in the most recent SAT exams – could add a whopping £20,000 to the value of a property, compared to the value of identical homes near to schools which finished in the bottom 25% of the SAT results.

Even a good, rather than exceptional, school will add an average of nearly £6,000 to the value of the home, not a sum to be sniffed at.

3) Good neighbours

How much your property is going to be worth can be affected by the people who live on your street.

A study by LV last year found that up to 10% can be knocked off the value of a home if it is located near to a dilapidated property. Just as problematic are noisy neighbours, who can take off an average of £18,000 from your home’s value if they tend to stay up all night playing music.

You should also consider your neighbours – or more accurately their properties – when thinking about ways to add value to your own home.

It’s one thing to add a huge extension to your property, which you reckon will take its value up to £400,000. However, if all the other properties in the street are worth £250,000, this may be a waste of time – how many buyers want to shell out £400,000 to live in a £250,000 street, no matter how nice that extension may be?

4) A good street name

What’s in a name? Well, according to property information site, the name of the street on which the property is situated can tell us a lot about how much that property is worth.

The site found that properties found on streets with ‘Hill’ in the name are worth an average of £341,666, well over 50% more than the average property price in the UK according to Zoopla’s own Zed Index.

Living on a ‘Lane’ also commands a sizeable premium according to the study, with average prices an incredible £328,378.

Other names making up the top five include Mews (£294,869), Park (£283,069) and Green (£269,861).

In contrast, the cheapest properties are found on roads featuring the name ‘Street’, with an average property price of £155,515 – less than half you can expect to pay to live on a Hill!

Other budget streetnames include ‘Terrace’ (£156,387), ‘Crescent’ (£176,488), ‘Court’ (£178,488) and ‘View’ (£184,546).

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