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How much do home improvements cost?

20/07/2022 |  min read

Improving your home can entirely transform the way that you experience your treasured space. However, the cost of some trades as much as doubled last year and you may understandably be wondering if you should go without or whether to seek out a financial solution to fund the changes you'd like to make.

Popular home improvements

Here are some of the most popular home improvements and the costs worth bearing in mind when deciding what is achievable:

1. Loft conversion

If you are looking to add more space to your home, a loft conversion could be right for you. Most straightforward loft conversions do not require planning permission and they can be a great way to create an extra bedroom or a space for hobbies.

According to tradesperson directory Checkatrade, the average UK loft conversion costs around £40,000. However, you could need to raise as much as £75,000 depending on the property type and your requirements.

2. New driveway

Many of us are guilty of letting our driveway fall victim to wear and tear, but tending to it can transform the appearance of your property.

There are countless ways to update or repair your driveway and the cost will vary depending on the size of the space available and the materials you wish to use. Tarmac tends to be the cheapest option, although you may prefer the style of more expensive block paving. Make sure to also factor in labour costs and try to collect a number of quotes from sources you trust so that your new driveway will last.

3. Refitted kitchen

Our kitchens tend to be the hub of the home so creating a space that meets your needs is a very worthwhile investment.

Which? estimate that a large and bespoke kitchen could cost as much as £100,000, but if you are considering repairs rather than a refit or have a smaller area to work with, you may only need to raise up to £7,000.

4. Bathroom makeover

Whether you anticipate future accessibility needs or want to keep up with trends, getting your bathroom right can be the finishing touch to your home.

You can expect to pay an average of £6,500 for a complete refit. Remember that multiple tradespeople might be required for plumbing and building work and this will add additional labour costs.

How can I fund home improvements?

Home improvements are commonly funded by existing savings, credit cards, or borrowing on an existing mortgage.

However, if you are a homeowner aged 55 or over and looking for a flexible way to pay for your home improvement plans, it is worth adding equity release to your considerations.

With the most popular equity release product, a Lifetime Mortgage, you can borrow a tax-free cash lump sum against the value of your home. You retain 100% homeownership, so you can enjoy your new features without the need to downsize to free up funds in the years to come.

You must wish to release at least £10,000 to be eligible for this type of equity release, so it could be the perfect opportunity to achieve several goals with your tax-free cash, whether that's multiple home improvements or some entirely different objectives.

There are no required repayments, although you can make these if you wish. Instead, interest rolls up on a compound basis and the amount borrowed, plus interest, is usually repaid through the sale of the home when the last homeowner passes away or moves into long-term care.

Seek the right advice

Taking from the value of your estate now will reduce its value in the future and a tax-free cash injection could also affect your entitlement to means-tested benefits.

It is therefore essential that you seek advice from an equity release specialist if you are considering a Lifetime Mortgage to fund your desired home improvements. An adviser can talk you through this in detail and explain that improving your home could increase its value, therefore offsetting some of the risks involved in borrowing with this product.

At Responsible Equity Release, we can arrange for you to have a free and no-obligation advice appointment with one of our friendly equity release specialists. They will consider your individual circumstances and objectives and only recommend equity release if it's right for you.

Call us today on 0800 048 5384 to book your appointment or use our free online calculator to receive an instant estimate of what your home improvements budget could be.

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