March 02, 2012 AT 9:07 AM
improve, dont move
RatedPeople.com encourage Brits to improve, not move as Brits turn their backs on new builds.
After years of hearing that it’s all about location, location, location, research from Rated People.com has shown today that UK homeowners are now crying out for more space in their homes.
Research of 2,000 homeowners has shown that more than 1 in 6 are dissatisfied with the size of the rooms in their home, with bigger rooms topping the list of the most important criteria for them if they were to move to a new house.
In addition, over 70 per cent of respondents commented that they would rather not live in a post-1990s home, as 22 per cent believe pre-1990s homes are built with bigger rooms than their modern day equivalents. By comparison, of those homeowners who expressed a preference for post 1990s homes just 5 per cent think that the rooms are of a good size while 16 per cent believe that the energy saving measures and insulation are better than in older homes.
Dermot Steedman the owner of Dermarta, a builder in London and a member of RatedPeople.com commented:
“I’ve seen a noticeable increase over the past couple of years in the number of extension and conversion projects being undertaken by homeowners.
“Increasing the size of their current home, instead of moving, is often a financial and lifestyle choice. Conversions and extensions are usually cheaper and less risky than moving and a well planned project will nearly always add value to the property, which is why I chose to convert my own loft. Like many of my clients a loft conversion was the obvious choice as it allowed us to upgrade and increase our living space more cost-effectively than moving to a new house.
“The most popular projects in recent years have been single story extensions at the rear of properties to create open plan kitchen living space, this type of extension tends to cost between £20,000 and £40,000, and loft conversions which offer more scope to create extra bedrooms and bathrooms and typically cost from £15,000 up to about £50,000.”
This research supports a report from the Royal Institute of British Architects, released in September 2011, which highlighted that the average new home in Britain is only 92 per cent of the recommended minimum size, making new-build British homes the smallest in Western Europe.
Creating more space also topped the list of modifications for consumer’s current homes, with building an extension ranking as the most popular type of home improvement followed by adding another bedroom through a loft conversion.
At present, a three bedroom house costs an average of 31 per cent more than a two bedroom house, and in addition recent figures from Lloyds TSB have shown that the fees associated with moving are on average £8,922. Conversely, the cost of building a single storey extension is approximately £21,000, so on the average three-bed home, Brits could save as much as £56,122 by improving rather than moving.
Jonnie Irwin, brand ambassador, RatedPeople.com, said:
“Faced with a difficult housing market, homeowners should be looking at what they can be doing to improve their current home – and where they can add value – rather than moving on.
“Upgrading your home does not need to cost a fortune and building the extra space for a growing family can add value, and help to overcome some of the smaller proportions of more modern build properties.”