With the introduction of the Stamp Duty Holiday in 2020, continuing through into 2021, property prices in areas such as Lincoln, Grantham and Newark have seen a sharp increase. Now that such financial help has come to an end and the property market is struggling to maintain such growth on its own, it's important you don't make any mistakes that will make the lack of growth in 2022 any worse, or indeed actually decrease the value of your most valuable asset.
Mount & Minster property experts and Estate Agents explain the most common ways you could accidentally damage the value of your home.
1. The Personal TouchPutting your own stamp on a property is not a bad thing, particularly if a bit of modernisation is required. Over-personalisation however is a big deterrent for potential buyers. A survey of 2,966 adults found the majority would be put off making an offer with over-the-top décor or carpets. Bold colours and styles in rooms which are expensive to change, particularly kitchens and bathrooms, were especially off-putting.
2. Overdeveloping your homeA consistent phrase all the best Estate Agents use is: less is more.
Overdeveloping a house or extending it to the point it's too big for the plot it sits on can knock off tens of thousands of pounds from its value. It's important to get the balance right between living space and garden space.
3. Insufficient paperworkWhen doing work, even minor changes, the associated planning and consent rules are often complex and it's not always clear what changes need permission. This can lead to issues when it comes to selling later-on. If you fail to get the necessary consents or building regulations sign-offs for works, it can really damage the price of your home, or even cause the deal to fall through altogether. A serious breach of consent or regulatins can also lead to a hefty fine.
4. Gaden FailsIf there's one thing everyone has appreciated over COVID, it's that outdoor space has become the most valuable feature of a home. The "race for space" amongst buyers, particularly those from London who are moving away from densely populated and built-up areas, has caused 11% price increases for homes around Lincoln, Grantham and Newark with large gardens and open space.
With this in mind, 62% of buyers would now be deterred from buying a home either without a garden, or with an over-complicated and poorly designed garden.
5. Over ValuingThe average house price in the East Midlands increased by nearly 12% in 2021 fuelled by an acute shortage of homes on the market, resulting in a record number of sellers who achieved above asking price.
2022 is now a very different story. Putting your property up for sale for too high a price is likely to be the most damaging thing a motivated vendor can do. It can be tempting to take the advice of an agent who values your home the highest, however use your good judgement as you'll have a pretty good idea yourself. Go with the agent you feel is the most competent who offers the best and most realistic advice. Get it wrong and it can cost a seller around 5% of their potential sale price. On a £250,000 property, this mistake will cost you more than £12,000. On a £600,000 home, this error will cost an eye-watering £30,000.
Ralph Wyrley-Birch, Senior Partner at Mount & Minster, says "the strongest market response is always in the first two weeks of exposure. I consistently see active buyers going onto the market with an agent that's not up to speed with their market knowledge and waste this optimal sales period by being too optimistic on price and damaging the end result."
He goes on to say "such agents encourage a reduction in price later-on, however you won’t get the result you will have done if you’d been realistic from the outset with a larger pool of buyers competing to acquire the property and higher offers on the table."