If you’re a busy person who has unexpectedly found themselves with a quiet month on their hands, you might be considering taking on a little home project.
However, many of the projects that add significant value to your home can take a surprising amount of time. That’s because some modifications need to be given approval by the council first, and getting their sign off will take between 8-10 weeks. Here are some projects you’ll have to clear with your local authority first:
- Adding a conservatory
- Installing roof lights
- Installation of new windows or external doors
- Alterations to the external appearance of your home
So if you’ve decided on the spur of the moment to take a home project on, the ones listed above aren’t for you. However, that’s not to say there’s nothing you can do. Below are some easy wins in improving your home, and increasing its future resale value.
Renovating a bathroom
Renovating your bathroom can seem like a big job, but it can be done quite quickly, if you have the right professionals on board.
There are many ways to add value to your existing bathroom, especially now with so many new trends popping up. Here’s just a few…
- His and her sinks
- New shower
- More natural light
- New tiles
For a full breakdown on trends, see our bathroom features blog, or visit our Pinterest page.
In term of timings, if you already know what you want, and can buy the materials without much hassle (so, if you’re not going for bespoke) even a full renovation can be done within a month. Roughly speaking, here’s what the work might look like:
Week One: demolition, rough carpentry, and plumbing (however, plumbing times will increase if moving your toilet, or other appliances).
Week Two: Electrical rough-in, first inspections, insulation, plastering, and paint.
Week Three: Final inspection, tilework, cabinetry, and flooring.
Week Four: Adding in fixtures, final touches, and tying up of loose ends.
Installing underfloor heating
Before you might have considered underfloor heating as a bit of a luxury, but it’s actually one of the most efficient ways to heat your home. Unlike your radiators, that just heat the air around them, an underfloor system heats the entire floor, warming the room more evenly, and using less energy. They’re particularly desirable in bathrooms, and in homes that are looking to save space by ridding themselves of clunky radiators.
There are two types of underfloor heating for you to choose from: wet systems, and electric. Both have their pros and cons. For example, wet systems are cheaper to run, and more efficient. However, installing a wet system will be a lot more expensive than its electric counterpart. An electric system is very easy to install, as it requires no pipework, and is more practical for upper floors. Though again, there’s a trade-off in that electric models generate higher bills, and you have to be careful about furniture placement.
Remove a wall
Full disclosure, being able to remove a wall in a month might not be for everyone.
It will take prior planning, and you’ll have to consider what it is you’re aiming to accomplish. Are you just looking to give better connection between two rooms? Or do you want to change the layout of your whole ground floor? If you’re unsure of what the final product will be, we would always exercise caution. Why not talk to an architect? They’re experts in redesigning space, and will be able to offer visualisations of your project before you start.
But let’s say you’re all set on design. You know what you want, and all that stands in your way is one pesky wall. How do you go about removing it?
First things first, you’ll want to make sure it’s not a load bearing wall. This can be verified by getting a structural engineer on board to assess. Now if it is a load bearing wall, your project can still go ahead but you’re now looking at a more expensive, and time intensive project. Your structural engineer will have to work with you to implement steel joists to help keep your home structurally sound.
If you’re just removing a stud wall, you’ll have a much easier ride. You’ll need to find a reliable contractor to do the actual tearing down, plus arrange a payment plan with them. Make sure you also don’t forget to hire a skip for all the waste. Once the wall is knocked down, your contractor will plaster up the walls, allowing you to get ready to decorate.
Some other things you might have to consider when removing a wall will be whether or not you need to move any light switches or plugs. If so, you’ll need to get a electrician on board. And you’ll also need to think about heating, if any of your radiators are affected. Like we said, this isn’t the most simple project, but if done right it can completely transform your home.
Landscape your garden
If you’ve bought a house with a large, but jungle like garden, then having it transformed into a green haven can add significant value onto your home.
You have several options when it comes to landscaping your garden. You could do it yourself, which in theory is cost effective. However, these monetary savings can go out the window if you have to correct mistakes, and on the whole, DIY tends to take much longer. A second option is to get a professional in to do the lot. This will be expensive, but could take as little as a few weeks for the project to be completed. Or your third option is to do your garden in stages. Break down what your garden needs, and factor in what you might be capable of doing, plus where and for what you’ll need a professional. This is a good option for the penny conscious, and if you have a little more time to spare.
When it actually comes to landscaping your space, here are some features you might consider:
- A new patio
- Removing a patio
- Vegetable beds
- A rockery, complete with succulents
- A shingle path
- A garden pond
For more garden ideas, check out our very own garden trends Pinterest board.
Paint and decorate
The classic home improvement project - redecorating.
You don’t need to be an interior designer to make a profit through decorating, but the value you generate can fluctuate wildly, depending on the scale of your work and the quality. A lick of paint isn’t going to have the same monetary value as a full home makeover. And if adding value onto your home is the goal, you’ll have to think about where you’re starting from. Taking a dated home and bringing the decor into the 21st century is going to give a much better rise in resale value than simply redoing the colour scheme of an already nice room.
If you know your home needs a new lick of paint, but you’re really not sure where to start, here are some tips to get you started…
- Go for warm, sophisticated neutrals if you want to attract future buyers
- Adding more mirrors to your home can make it feel brighter and more spacious
- Look to install shelves for decorations - succulents, anyone?
- Replace your carpets if they’re looking a bit worn
And if you’re really at a loss, there’s always the option of getting an interior designer. This might have been seen as a bit fancy in the past, but tech is really changing the industry, and there are now many online options. One of our favourites is our friends over at MyBespokeRoom.com.
Not sure how to get the most out of your home? You can now get a free consultation call with our experts.