September 18, 2017

The best ways to add value to your home

IT’S what any savvy seller wants to know.

How do you add thousands of dollars to your home? Is it a pool? Another bedroom? A car space? A granny flat?

The experts reveal to what DIY additions will make you the big bucks on auction day.


The first rule for resale is to invest in home additions that add profit to your bottom line, not neutralise it or leave you swimming in debt … like a pool can.

“Swimming pools are quite hit and miss — as lovely as they are in summer, they come with so much maintenance and without a heater, aren’t used much at all over the whole year,” said Sydney interior designer Natalie Bacic.

“They are great to have and use, but costly to install and unless they are for your own use, are not worth putting in just for resell value.”

If you’re pool looks like this it’s bound to attract some buyers. But people with small kids might be turned off for safety reasons.Source:Supplied

“A garage for at least two cars is always a wanted addition for buyers, as is an ensuite and walk in robe.

“Butler’s kitchens and pantries have also made a huge comeback and appeal to many buyers.

“They are so versatile and keep the actual kitchen streamline and aesthetically on point — I love having a separate space to keep appliances that we use on a daily basis such as kettles, toasters, blenders and all of our pantry items, all out of eyesight.

“If you are lucky enough to have the space and budget, a second dishwasher and fridge is really useful and appeals to buyers who want to entertain.”

A great reno with a butler’s pantry (the door on the left) keeps appliances like toasters and kettles out of sight. Picture: Martina GemmolaSource:Supplied


Ms Bacic, of Nat Bacic Interiors, said the cheapest and most effective way to modernise a property was a fresh coat of paint and simple changes like old tapware or bench tops.

“New paint and carpet can really make all the difference,” she said.

“They can update the oldest of homes and without much effort, and that’s the key to anything you want to do in the home — to get the maximum benefit for minimal expense.

“New decor like cushions, lamps and throws can also make a big difference, and Kmart or Big W have some fantastic things that are inexpensive and can change your whole house.

“That’s a brilliant way to update any space with the latest on trend pieces, without breaking the bank.”

With a splash of paint and a few on-trend pieces, you can change a whole house. This peachy colour is ‘siesta’ from Haynes Paint.Source:Supplied

“Your space can be changed with minimal fuss and cost, whenever it’s time for another update.

“Even simple additions such as fans in the bedrooms cannot only aesthetically finish a room but be an absolute lifesaver in summer, when the air con is used at full capacity.

“To have the option of turning the air con off and having fans instead is a big plus for buyers, who know it’s a welcome relief come electricity bill time.”


With property prices constantly rising and affordable housing out of reach for the majority of Australian families, granny flats — like those included in the new season of Nine’s hit reality renovation show The Block — can become huge assets on auction day, according to real estate agents.

“We tend to find the best results come from the addition of a granny flat,” said Ray White Willoughby agent Rebecca Mikellides.

Granny flats can be a huge bonus, with added rental returns. Picture: Granny Flat SolutionsSource:Supplied

“More often than not, we see the large array of clients looking for properties with granny flats for a range of options.

“The normal family often seeks this addition should they wish to move into a property with their parents, splitting the costs of living while also keeping the family unit tight.

“We also note that a range of astute property buyers looking for this addition to ease their mortgage by leasing out this external flat.

“This is a fantastic idea which can potentially save you a lot of money in the long run.”


“In relation to renovations that can add to the appeal to the home, I always recommend small updates to the bathroom, kitchen and the facade of the property which is your primary attraction and last impression of the property,” Ms Mikellides continued.

“Should it be a cute picket fence, a full rendering of the facade or modern bathroom updates, it will all mean significant increases in price during a sale.

“And styling and paint are worth their weight in gold — presentation during a sale process can net you 20 per cent more should it be un-styled.”

As anyone who has ever been on The Block will tell you, it’s the little styling touches that make a big difference. Here’s Josh and Elyse’s bathroom.Source:Supplied

“Finishings are also really important.

“An eye for detail is key should you take on a project, so considering how everything is pieced together is crucial.

“It creates a persona for the renovation and buyers will take this into consideration when they raise their hand on auction day.”