Just how much value can a new kitchen add to your home?
The last year has certainly been one like no other, and as we have been collectively confined to our houses our focus has unsurprisingly swung towards home improvements. The 2021 Home Improvements Trends Report from RatedPeople.com suggests that the pandemic has changed people’s priorities when it comes to what we want from our homes, with the need for space now at the top of most people’s wish list.
Extensions and conversions are now among the most commonly planned home improvements, and where this isn’t possible, more and more people are looking to move to bigger properties. According to research carried out by Rated People, 25% of UK residents are hoping to move to a bigger property within the next year. A further 17% of UK residents are looking to install a new fitted kitchen in 2021, and 6% are looking to knock down a wall to increase their kitchen size.
This finding doesn’t particularly surprise us, as since the first lockdown in 2020 started to ease, our diary has never been busier when it comes to free home design visit appointments and new kitchen installations. Many of these appointments are for people looking to update their kitchens with the purpose of enjoying them and their family home for years to come. For others however, it is seen as an opportunity to add value to their property before moving on to something new.
But just how good an investment is a new kitchen, and will it add value to your home?
Home improvements almost always help to make your home more saleable; that is, they make it more desirable to potential buyers if you’re looking to sell. However, the same cannot be said when it comes to adding value to a property, with some additions such as swimming pools and solar panels being notoriously unlikely to offer a return on the initial investment.
When it comes to spending your money wisely, a new kitchen is certainly a great place to start. According to the National Association for Estate Agents (NAEA), if you can only afford to renovate one room in your home, it should be the kitchen.
As we’ve said many times before, the kitchen is the heart of the home and so holds great appeal to prospective house buyers, usually being the room they most focus on. In fact, Nationwide Building Society estimate that a new kitchen can add as much as 6% to the value of your home. Additionally, a dated or damaged kitchen that has seen better days can put a significant dent in the offers you receive from potential buyers, with Rated People reporting that you’re likely to lose an average of £8,500 as a result of these types of issues, so the swing really can be significant.
What are the things to consider before you start renovating your kitchen?
If you’re renovating your kitchen with the aim of simply enjoying it as the hub of your family home for the next 15-20 years, we’re all for having exactly what you want! Splash the cash on that must-have appliance; go for the incredibly cool bright yellow cabinets! It is yours to enjoy and seeing a return in your investment is not your top priority.
If however, you think this may not be your forever home, and actually you might think about moving in couple of years’ time, there are some things you may want to consider to make sure you see a return on your investment.
It is important that the spend on your new kitchen is proportionate to overall price bracket of your house, if you are looking at it as a way to add value. For example, if you invest in a £20,000 kitchen when your house is worth £200,000, it is unlikely you’ll see your investment back. Similarly, spending very little on a kitchen when your house is valued at £700,000 may put off potential buyers and drag down the property price, so these are important things to consider.
It’s also important to think about how much of the work you can feasibly carry out yourself, and where you really need to bring in the experts. Make a list of the things you can do yourself to help keep to the budget. For example, you could remove and dispose of the old kitchen yourself, or even list it for sale on local selling pages on social media, or Ebay, saving on, or potentially even adding to the budget! For other things such as plastering or electrical work, it is always best to call in the professionals, but take your time getting quotes and recommendations. Remember that the cheapest price on paper doesn’t always work out as the most cost effective option!
Weigh up a New Fitted Kitchen vs. a Kitchen Makeover
If you are planning on selling your home in the near future, but know the kitchen is letting it down, why not consider a kitchen makeover? A kitchen makeover is a really cost effective way of having what looks like a whole new kitchen, but at a significant cost saving.
A kitchen makeover involves replacing the cabinet doors, handles, and worktops if required to give your room a new, fresh and modern look, without having to replace the actual structure of the kitchen, which is a significant proportion of the cost both in terms of materials and fitting. Many customers are actually able to carry out the fitting of their new kitchen doors themselves, which can instantly save you thousands of pounds compared to having a whole new fitted kitchen, which is a much more complicated and skilled task.
The majority of kitchen styles we carry are available as part of a kitchen makeover, with both traditional and modern styles on offer. Only in-frame kitchens cannot be installed in this way, as the doors sit within the cabinets and cannot be added on to existing units.
Think about the style and period of your house
If you are planning on updating your kitchen with a view to selling your house in the near future, we would always advise you to consider choosing a style which is sympathetic to the house itself.
To achieve the best possible price on your house and return on investment, we would recommend selecting a kitchen that is in keeping with the rest of the property, so for older or period properties a traditional style shaker kitchen may be most appropriate, whereas you may want to opt for something glossy and modern in a new build, city-centre flat.
If you’re planning on listing your house for sale, it is always a good idea to think about what any prospective buyers may like or expect, as well as your own personal tastes.
Colour me popular
If you’re keen for your kitchen to appeal to as many buyers as possible when you come to sell, colour is one of the top things you need to bear in mind. As a general rule, we always advise to keep it light, neutral and clean-looking, as these are by far the most popular choices we see people go for when designing their ideal kitchen. Our anecdotal evidence is backed up by a survey done by Rated People, who found the top ten kitchen colours desired by potential buyers are as follows:
· White - 27%
· Light Grey – 22%
· Natural Wood – 21%
· Cream – 19%
· Off-White – 15%
· Dark Grey – 11%
· Light Blue – 8%
· Black – 8%
· Light Brown – 5%
· Dark Blue – 5%
As much as we’ve seen some amazing kitchens in pink, mustard and red, if you’re looking to sell your property, it’s probably sensible to stick to a neutral colour palette so you don’t limit your pool of would-be buyers. Introduce colour in the form of accessories that can come with you when you sell up and move on to pastures new.
Maximise space with a great layout
As we’ve already mentioned, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms in the house for many buyers, so it’s important you make every bit of space work effectively. We offer a completely free home design service, where we’ll come to your house, have a chat with you and take in the kitchen space to design a brand new kitchen layout that makes the most of the square footage.
Great kitchen design should be attractive, but also really efficient, with key aspects positioned in a way that makes life just that little bit easier when you’re actually using the kitchen. We want walkways to feel open to give a sense of space, and for the fridge, sink and cooker to be close enough to each other that cooking doesn’t become something akin to an Olympic event.
Built in storage is a great way of maximising your kitchen space, avoiding the need for cluttered sides, which not only makes your kitchen look bigger but gives a sense of calm and orderliness to buyers viewing your home. Take a look at our blog on Clever Storage Ideas That’ll Transform How You Use Your Kitchen for advice and inspiration.
If you’re looking to invest in your kitchen to add value to your home and increase your chances of a great sale price, we’d love to hear from you!
Why not get in touch today to book your FREE home design visit? We cover the Oxfordshire and Berkshire areas, including, but not limited to Didcot, Abingdon, Radley, Oxford City, Wantage, Wallingford, Benson, Berinsfield, Goring, Pangbourne.
With Kitchenroom you can always be assured of:
1. First class personal service from start to finish
2. 18 mm Rigid (assembled) wall and base units with doors already fitted
3. 10 cabinet colour options (so not just white / ivory or oak) to match the colour of the kitchen
4. 2 mm ABS edged cabinets
5. Soft close Blum doors & drawers that come with a lifetime guarantee
6. 25 year guarantee on our units / 10 years on Solid wood kitchens / 7 years on MDF kitchens
7. A typical lead time of 3-4 weeks
8. We can supply only or supply and arrange to fit your new kitchen where we will take care of the whole project from start to finish
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