Keeping your property looking up to date and attractive is important, whether you’re hoping to sell or rent it out. Potential tenants and buyers are likely to pay more for a property that looks modern and appealing. As such, putting a little money into renovation projects can prove to be a wise investment.
The Australian property market also continues to grow into 2018 so it’s still a great time to focus on enhancing your property to make it stand out. While kitchens and bathrooms are traditionally the focus of home renovations—and are set to still be popular renovation choices—the market is likely to see a few other renovation trends this year in Australia.
1. Energy Efficient Upgrades
An increased interest in reducing energy consumption and environmentally friendly initiatives will lead to even more “green” renovation projects this year.
Australian houses are notorious for being cold and costly to heat in winter, and hard to keep cool in summer, without the aid of air-conditioning and heating. Adding insulation to stop heat from escaping (insulation can help prevent up to 80% of heat loss) or reduce the amount heat from entering may not be a particularly exciting renovation project, but it’s one that will prove cost-effective by reducing electricity and gas bills, which can be very appealing to home buyers.
Adding insulation to roofs, and other energy-saving measures such as sealing draughts, solar panels, and installing energy efficient lighting can cost as low as $5,000. Although that’s not classified as cheap, it’s worth it in the long run.
2. Updating Kitchen Cabinetry and Fittings
Bringing natural materials such as stone and timber into interior design will be a trend for 2018. The look is organic and authentic, rather than smooth and polished, reflecting the “wabi sabi” Japanese concept of embracing imperfection. We’ll also see more mixing of contrasting materials and textures such as kitchen islands made from marble and wood.
Dark timber is expected to be a popular shade this year. Use it in kitchen cabinetry to contrast with white walls and polished concrete, or combine with blonde shades of wood and bamboo.
Kitchen renovations currently average at around $17,000, but there are a wide range of budgets that can be accommodated for if you wish to upgrade. Old fashioned, outdated kitchens can be very off-putting even if the rest of the house is attractive, so it’s worth putting in some investment here if you’re trying to sell or rent out an older property.
3. Upgraded Flooring
Switching out stained carpets or cheap laminate for better quality flooring makes a big impact when it comes to impressing potential buyers or renters. This is especially important when showing an unfurnished property, where the flooring will be one of the main things that is noticed. It’s also worth noting that by law, landlords must replace carpets and other flooring that are badly worn, so it’s worth investing in a floor covering that will stand the test of time.
Good quality timber flooring looks beautiful but can be expensive, starting at around $100 per square metre. Until recently, wood-effect laminates and tiles were a poor alternative, but improved technology means that good quality imitation wood flooring with high pattern variation is now almost indistinguishable from the real thing. For more home flooring upgrade tips, click here.
4. Luxury “Hotel-Style” Bathrooms
Unattractive bathroom fittings, dirty grout, and dingy flooring can make a property feel cheap and depressing. Conversely, a luxury-feel bathroom, with good-looking, high-quality fittings represents a certain lifestyle that can help to increase its value.
Updating your bathroom tiles is one way to give it an overhaul without ripping out fittings and needing to hire a plumber. Subway tiles will continue to be popular in 2018, but in the year’s deep blue and green colours, rather than white. Using tiles with unique shapes, geometric patterns, and textures to create a look reminiscent of wallpaper is also a way to create a unique but on-trend look in the bathroom that makes it feel more stylish and expensive.
If you do opt to completely renovate your entire bathroom, you can expect to pay from $5,000 to $25,000, depending on the size of the bathroom and the quality of fixtures and materials used.
5. Exterior Paint and Landscaping
Landscaping will always be an effective way to increase the value of your property by enhancing its “curb appeal.” It could also be a relatively small and cheap project depending on the current state of your outdoor space. Landscaping can actually help you make the biggest visual difference to your property for the least investment.
If the exterior of your property is painted, freshening it up with a new coat of paint will help to make it look and feel cleaner, brighter, and more up to date. Expect to pay $2,000 or more for professionals to paint the exterior of your property, depending on its size.
Planting or improving beds and borders, adding new plants, mowing lawns, pruning trees and bushes, and adding more colour and greenery are all easy and affordable ways to improve your property’s look from the outside. If you have an apartment unit, here are several “skyscaping” tips to elevate its appearance.
Plan Your Renovations Carefully
When deciding on what kind of renovations to make to your property, it’s important to balance your initial investment against the potential increase in value you expect when the project is complete (your return on investment). This depends on factors such as the age and condition of your property, its location, and whether you’re selling or renting it out.
If you’re looking for advice on increasing the value and getting the best deal for your investment property, it’s smart to seek advice from a specialist. Clever Finance Solutions has the expertise and experience to guide you towards the right financial decisions, whether you’re looking for a loan or planning to enhance your investment portfolio. The most important part: we’re always willing to help.