Kirsty McLuckie on how to increase the value of a home this Spring

Most of the advice given about how to add value to your property involves large projects such as a loft conversion, landscaping, or an extension.

While in the right circumstances these are all likely to up the valuation, they are expensive, time consuming and disruptive.

But there are ways to add value with much less investment in money and time, and some of the tasks you can undertake in just an hour will have a better return on the effort involved.

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With the clocks going forward this weekend, gifting us all an extra hour of daylight to be productive, there are the small home upgrades to consider – whether you want to achieve a little more luxury, a greater sense of order in the chaos, or to boost the chances of selling up quickly at a good price.

Image: Adobe StockImage: Adobe Stock
Image: Adobe Stock

Property expert Jonathan Rolande, founder of online property investment portal Buy Fast, says there are number of things people looking to add value can do in an hour.

His top tip: “Sprucing up the front door with a fresh coat of paint, which can improve that crucial first impression for viewers.” Remarkably, he estimates an hour spent with a paintbrush like this can add approximately £2,000 to a property’s value.

If you can spend a few minutes power washing the front path to get rid of grime and weeds in the paving cracks, that will give an even better kerb appeal, he says.

Inside the house, upgrading to energy-efficient light bulbs to improve the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating is also a quick fix which could gain a huge return.

Jonathan advises: “Achieving an upgraded EPC band can potentially boost the property’s value by approximately £3,000.”

Not bad for a task that just requires a few new bulbs and a stool to stand on.

Another way to add a couple of grand onto a home’s value is by tackling those quick-fix tasks that are often left undone, and addressing minor issues that often go unnoticed.

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Typical jobs would include replacing a broken door handle or bathroom cord replacement.

If you have a tatty carpet threshold, then securing it with a brass strip will make it unnoticeable.

Get rid of dead plants, wipe down or paint over small stains on the walls and fix any wobbly light fittings or electrical sockets.

Depending on the current state of your home, deep cleaning and decluttering can take a lot longer than one hour but, more than any other task, it can be done in stages.

Ensuring every item has its designated space and each room serves a clear purpose can create an illusion of spaciousness, with Jonathan estimating it could add £2,000 in value to a home.

The advice is to start with just one drawer or cupboard, or one corner of a room, and set a timer to get the job done over several weeks if necessary.

But the same approach can be taken to much larger tasks.

Updating the kitchen, including painting old cabinets and replacing outdated hardware, is a major task, and many householders are put off not just by the effort required, but the sheer disruption.

But revamping the galley is one of the best ways to add value to a home – potentially £7,000, says Jonathan, if you are transforming a dated and shabby fitted kitchen to something much more chic.

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Replacing a couple of door handles at a time will take a lot less than an hour, as could removing, painting and replacing a single unit door.

Working your way through slowly may mean living with a bit of a mix-and-match space for a couple of weeks, but the end result should be even better than an extra hour in bed.

- Kirsty McLuckie is property editor at The Scotsman

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