10 things that can reduce the value of your home

Man doing DIY at home with his dog

There are plenty of reasons why you may want to move house. Perhaps you simply want a change of scenery, or maybe you’re approaching retirement and would like to downsize to save some money?

Whatever your reason for considering a switch, you will most likely need to sell your current home to do so. And, with house prices as high as they are, now could be the perfect time.

While we’ve previously discussed some ways to make your home more attractive to prospective buyers, today we’re tackling the opposite. So, read on to discover 10 things that could reduce the value of your home.

1. Damaged or worn exterior

As much as you may have been told to never judge a book by its cover, it is human nature to do exactly that. First impressions are very important, and if your home needs a lot of work on the outside, people may not give it a second chance.

Cracked walls, flaking paint, and broken gutters are all just signs of work that will need doing once the new owners move in. Obvious breakages like these could put buyers off entirely before they even set foot in the front door.

2. Overgrown gardens

Available garden space could be essential for some, especially if they have pets or children. The current “race for space”, in which buyers are searching for an outside area to call their own, offers the potential for a garden to add value to your home, but not if it’s badly kept.

An overgrown and untended garden can completely nullify the bonus of having the outside space to begin with. In fact, one particularly invasive species of plant, the Japanese knotweed, must legally be removed from your property before it can be sold.

3. DIY mistakes

Whether incorrectly installing your shelving unit or drilling through a water pipe, DIY mistakes could damage your home’s value. A mistake signifies yet more work the new homeowner may have to do when moving in.

Poor plumbing and wiring could also have an effect since it’s more likely to break and require the work of a professional to fix.

4. Reducing the number of bedrooms

Three-bedroom houses are typically valued higher than two-bedroom houses, even if they prove to be slightly smaller. By knocking down walls and merging rooms together, you could be reducing the overall value of your property.

Buyers like to be able to personalise their spaces and having more rooms to work with could make the property more appealing. Plus, multiple bedrooms could be more attractive for larger families.

5. A low EPC rating

Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) detail the energy usage and efficiency of a property, in reference to things like the appliances and insulation.

A low EPC rating tends to indicate more expensive energy bills. The risk of higher bills could put a buyer off given that it could cost them in the long run. Consider boosting your EPC rating by replacing old, inefficient appliances and insulating your home.

6. Untidy or cluttered rooms

Your home should feel lived in, but it shouldn’t feel untidy. Cluttered rooms can stop potential buyers from seeing the true size of your home, and they may be uneasy when thinking about what could be hiding among the clutter.

Untidy doesn’t necessarily mean dirty, but many people might draw that comparison. As such, if you’re planning on selling, it may be best to do a bit of spring cleaning before putting up any photos or accepting viewings.

7. House number or street name

Superstition is a very real thing. For example, the numbers 4 and 13 are considered unlucky in many different cultures, so owning a flat or house with those numbers could lower its value. Luckily, you can request to get rid of the number and instead name your property.

Slightly less easy to change, however, is the street name of where you live. There are quite a few unfortunate street names in the UK, and InYourArea have listed a few – from Backside Lane to World’s End Road – that are proven to reduce the value of the homes situated on them.

One of the tamer examples on the list is Butt Close Lane in Leicester. Houses situated on this road are valued 53% lower than others in the same postcode.

8. Poorly rated or a lack of nearby schools

A huge concern for parents and families is where their children are going to go to school. Because of how catchment areas work, some children are almost guaranteed to go to the school closest to their home.

If the only nearby school has a low Ofsted rating, a parent may choose to search for an alternative. If a family is less likely to move in for this reason, it could reduce the value of your home.

9. Evidence of pets

Despite the fact that Statista estimate 59% of UK households own a pet, evidence of said pets could hurt you when selling your home.

This is because pets can be linked with bad smells, damage to the interior, and general uncleanliness.

If you’re planning on taking photos or house viewings, consider hiding away the litter box and hoovering up any hairs that may be lying around.

10. Having a swimming pool

This one might sound bizarre, who doesn’t want a swimming pool?

Well, since the Great British climate is not particularly well suited for outdoor swimming, a pool proves useless for much of the year, and keeping it maintained is nothing more than a money drain.

This is especially true in the current climate, given that energy costs are rising. Filters and heaters that constantly need to be running are essentially a large, impractical expense.

Get in touch

If you’d like to discuss your potential move in more detail, reach out to us. Email enquire@london-money.co.uk or call us at 0207 808 4120 to find out more.