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Look to 'minor improvements' to boost property value
08th June 2012
Landlords looking to increase the value of their rental properties should consider making several small-scale improvements, rather than major renovations.
That is the suggestion of recent comments made Andrew Leech, director at the National Home Improvement Council (NHIC), who believes minor property improvements can often provide a better return on investment.
"It is really about looking at the more minor things in the house which can make a big difference," he commented.
Looking at how you can improve the exterior of the building, such as the roof and windows, is usually a good place to start, says the expert.
"If you are looking at your property and want to make a pretty sound investment for yourself then you have got to look at the roof - make sure that there are no slipping tiles or broken flashings around the chimney and so on," he said.
"You have got to look at your rainwater systems and make sure that they are not leaking and creating damp patches indoors. You need to make sure that your windows are in good condition and it would be an advantage if you could replace them with PVC double-glazed windows."
While rent forms a large part of a landlord's earnings, the appreciation of the capital value of their properties can also prove a vital source of income and as such investing in improvements such as these can prove a savvy move.
To make sure all their hard work and investment does not go to waste, buy-to-let property owners should also make sure they have adequate landlord contents insurance and buildings insurance in place to cover the cost of any damage to their properties.
Meanwhile, other improvements that could prove a smart investment are those that improve the energy efficiency of the property, with insulation the best way to do this according to Mr Leech.
"Insulation is a major thing - cutting out all of the drafts and keeping yourself warm. Insulation is one of the most economical solutions to energy efficiency," he said.
"It is low priced, very cost efficient and will have a couple of years' payback period."
Posted by Brandon Parker