Renovations and conversions have increased a staggering 50% this last year – and as we move into the summer with uncertainty about further restrictions (and a hesitancy to travel), it looks like the trend for upgrading our homes is set to continue!
There are tonnes of reasons a facelift is an excellent investment; some practical, and others about enhancing our everyday lives:
- Creating extra space for remote working, home gyms and playrooms.
- Refreshing the feel of your property and making it more inviting.
- Adding value and improving the efficiency of heating and appliances.
- Upgrading garden areas and entertaining spaces for social events and family occasions.
Here we’ve collected some of the best home improvement ideas for 2021 to inspire you to get started on that long-overdue project, collated with the expert builders in London Lucanu Construction!
1. The Outbuilding Conversion
It’s funny how those dusty garden sheds and cluttered garages have come into their own during lockdown!
Whereas extra capacity may have once been something we took for granted, the mighty shed is now one of the most popular renovation projects – and they offer a world of possibility.
Inspired to reclaim that space into something usable? How about:
- Creating a professional garden office.
- Renovating a garage or side extension into an annexe – there are significant incentives here regarding Stamp Duty, as well as providing a standalone accommodation on your property.
- Converting your shed into a home gym.
- Building a separate kids playroom (where they can be as noisy as they like!).
Professional spaces are in huge demand, so whether a yoga studio, creative area, or simple office, the new ‘work from home normal’ is far easier with a dedicated room.
2. The Eco-Friendly Upgrade
Next, we see a tremendous appetite for eco-friendly conversions, decor and renovations.
Globally, the mood is all about sustainability. One of the few positive pandemic outcomes is the transformation of oceans, skies and natural habitats, with pollution and international travel taking a back seat.
Homeowners are taking note and looking for ways to future-proof their properties, with benefits such as:
- Lower energy bills.
- Improved insulation and heat retention.
- Faster hot water supplies.
- Independence from the national grid.
- More efficient appliances.
- Heat reflective glazing.
You don’t need to fit your entire roof with solar panels to inject a few eco-credentials into your home.
Easy options include upgrading your loft insulation, replacing a tired old boiler with a cleaner alternative, or installing energy-saving light bulbs.
Repainting with non-toxic paints is great for your health, and the air quality in your home or building a rainwater butt fed by guttering serves as a resource for your plants and protects your property from damp.
Green, environmentally conscious, and cost-saving – it’s a win-win!
We’ll talk about outdoor spaces in a second. Still, you can also look to your green thumb to improve the feel of your property and have a beneficial impact on the natural wildlife (yep, even in the city, you’ll find an abundance of bees, butterflies, mice and badgers!).
Planting a small patch of wildflowers or fitting some floral window boxes add a dash of colour and charm while being a good move for Mother Nature.
3. The Garden Overhaul
Pretty much every UK family has now experienced a lockdown birthday – apart from those lucky summer babies – and it’s made millions of people look to their gardens, balconies and patios to see where they can make home life happier.
While we can now visit parks and beaches, you can’t overestimate the joy of having a beautiful outdoor space at home – tailored to you and completely private.
Popular garden projects include:
- Levelling areas of the garden to make additional living space. (Read more here).
- Replacing worn decking with fresh wood or even a contemporary composite option.
- Installing luxurious outdoor seating areas, built-in barbeques, fire pits, and the hugely fashionable pizza oven.
- Building an elegant patio or paved area, ideal for entertaining, seating, potted herb gardens, paddling pools and social events.
Little touches such as LED solar lights, a repaved driveway or a canopy for all-weather alfresco dining make a garden a functional space year-round and add to the value of your property.
Great garden design is all about making the most of the space you have.
Projects to paint courtyard walls, fit clever recessed lighting, or upgrade your balcony rails all make excellent use of smaller outdoor spaces.
How about a slimline glass and chrome balustrade, opening up those views and making your balcony the perfect spot for your morning coffee!
4. The Loft Conversion
Finally, we work with hundreds of clients who turn their gaze upwards when looking for ways to enhance their living space.
Roofing replacements are essential to preserving the integrity of your property – but a loft conversion alongside that is a whole different ball game. According to Lucanu Construction, Research has found that a loft conversion can increase the value of your home by 20% or more, depending on what the space is transformed to (view source).
Property prices have soared, with a mass exodus from dense urban areas, an enormous demand for family homes, and a premium placed on popular locations, pricing many people out of the market.
Alongside that, low-interest rates make remortgaging for renovations more affordable than ever, so it’s no shock that attic conversions are right up there in the popularity rankings to extend your living space without needing to join the property market chaos.
Lofts are prime for renovation, and often far more cost-effective than a ground-level extension, and a viable option for city homes without an abundance of outside space to build upon.
Converting the loft adds value, creates a whole new floor and can be used to construct additional bedrooms, double-height first-floor living, home offices – or any other use that will benefit your household!
So many properties have a loft that is purely a storage space or somewhere to keep your water tank.
However, just as with a garden shed, they offer the opportunity to transform the way you live.
Each of these home improvement projects is a way to elevate your home, not just in value and aesthetic, but as part of a nationwide movement to pour TLC into the places we live and make home a beautiful space to be.