Top Tips for Buying a Home That Will Keep its Value
The thought of ending up in negative equity is enough to bring even the calmest person out in a cold sweat. Buying a home is a big commitment, and most people are happy to accept that they'll end up staying in their home for a few years, but ending up trapped in a house that has lost a significant chunk of its value to mysterious market forces is not something that anyone wants to happen.
It would be nice if it were possible to guarantee that your home would keep its value even a recession, but that's just not possible. What you can do, though, is try to pick a home that has several of the following positive traits which will make it more likely that it will hold its value even if the housing market crashes:
1. A good location
A home that's close to a school, is served by good transport links, and is in a crime free neighbourhood isn't as likely to lose its value as one that's in a generic housing development that doesn't have as much to offer.
2. Well maintained
A well-maintained home with solid wooden doors, double glazing, and freshly painted walls should fetch a higher asking price than a run-down property. Even when there's a recession on, people like to do their bit for the environment, so selling points such as insulation, reclaimed doors, and low utility bills are all positives.
3. A good kitchen and bathroom
If you already own a house, and are looking to sell it, the first rooms you should spruce up are the kitchen and the bathroom. If your kitchen looks like it was designed in middle ages, or your bath is chipped and scuffed, the house won't sell. A house with a gorgeous bathroom and stylish, functional kitchen will be much more likely to turn viewers into buyers.
4. Privacy and sound proofing
Nobody wants to be kept awake at night by partying neighbours or the sound of passing traffic. If you have double glazing, solid wooden doors, and some nice shrubs to hide your windows and give you privacy, then buyers will feel more confident about your property.
5. Understand the area
Local knowledge is always handy when it comes to buying a new home. All the features in the world won't help you if your home is in an area that's traditionally been considered a "bad neighbourhood". On the other hand, homes close to schools, religious buildings or leisure facilities tend to retain their value pretty well.
Nobody can guarantee that the value of a home will go up or down, but you can protect yourself a little by making a wise investment, and there are always things that you can do to increase the value of your home when you've bought it. Even small changes such as replacing countertops, fitting reclaimed doors, or installing a new bath can add to the value of your home, and make it more pleasant to live in while you wait for it to sell.
Jon Platy is behind most of the content for Principal Homebuyers. Based in the UK they offer a wide range of services for home owners to sell their homes quickly.