DIY: How to boost the value of your property

As a current or prospective property owner, you want to rest assured that you are getting the most out of your investment. This means that you will at some point have to do improvements to sell your home for the highest possible price if you choose to do so. The first step is to ensure you have building or home insurance.

Step two would be following a few of the nifty tips and advice listed below to develop your property at a minimum expense.

home depot

 

Starting your own DIY project

  • Attend a workshop, especially if it offers skills training on how to use power tools.
  • Research your project on the Internet. Manufacturers’ websites are also a gold mine of information.
  • Before starting a large project, speak to a professional.
  • Make a list of everything you will need.
  • Plan ahead – separate the project into little sections and complete each before moving onto the next one.
  • Get used to spending time on YouTube – many a legendary DIYer started out with watching videos.
  • Don’t take chances on cost saving. Know which legal parameters you need to work in and don’t compromise your safety.

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Stay up to date with the latest in the DIY world

  • Attend workshops
  • Go digging on the Internet
  • Follow relevant pages on social media.
  • Sign up for newsletters or subscribe to DIY magazines.
  • Be a couch potato – the home channel on DStv is both entertaining and informing.
  • Get pinning – visit www.pinterest.com

house

Increasing the value of your property

The easiest and most cost-effective way to enhance the value of your property is to maintain or upgrade your garden, however, many people see the kitchen at the heart of a home, so you can also focus on upgrading countertops or cupboards. Security features such as an alarm, automated gates or trellidors naturally boost the value of your property. It is recommended that you spend 1% of the value of your property per annum on maintenance to keep it in tip-top shape.

Financially, home improvements will always pay off in the long-run. There’s a rule of thumb, if you are going to live in the house for less than five years, make improvements that you know will increase the resale value. If you will be living in your home for more than five years, create an environment that appeals to your personal taste and that you will enjoy living in – own your own space!

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The legal side

For property owners:

Any additional building extensions or changing the facade of a house requires council approval and building plans and sometimes consent from neighbours.  Anything else considered a “movable Item” such as a Wendy house, fountain or spa bath could often be installed without hassles or red tape.

For lessees:

In most normal cases, making structural changes to the property is not encouraged by the owner unless it will benefit the aesthetics or future rentability factor of the house in question.  If the owner agrees to some kind of structural change, only a reputable contractor should be used, with credentials and references to be given and quotes to be done.  If the tenant personally made a change that was not approved or is not up to standard, they would be liable to put something back the way it was.

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For seasoned buyers who want to purchase a new house:

Most important would be the structural integrity of the house.  No one wants to buy a house that has cracks or damp and mould issues.  Also, houses with malodour, bug infestations, old kitchens/bathrooms are not big selling points. Illegal structures without plans are a no-go.  Most buyers will look for north-facing properties with lots of natural light and, where possible, value for money per square metre of land/property purchased.

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FYI

  • Don’t underestimate the value of a new lick of paint.
  • If you are hiring an expert to do a particular job, watch how he or she does it. Take notes if you must, for future reference.
  • You can’t fix it if you don’t know it’s broken – Hire an inspector to check out the areas of your home that you don’t normally see.
  • Switch to energy-saving fixtures

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To recap, if you know  you’ll only live in your house for five years, do upgrades that will increase its value rather than ones that suits your style. This might include some gardening, a lick of paint, redoing the kitchen or adding safety measures. Find out how to do this cost effectively by speaking to professionals, searching the Internet and even attending workshops. But be sure to differentiate between the potential DIY jobs and those better left for the professionals. And of course, don’t leave your precious home uninsured, ensure that your home insurance policies are up to date and up to scratch.

 

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