I recently faced a problem which will be familiar to many people. I was a little short on house space.
We looked at changing from a 4 bedroom house to something a little larger, but actually struggled to find somewhere with a room suitable for an office. When we did, we were jumping from a 4 bedroom abode to a 6 bed. Houses of that size are not overly common and where they are to be found is in the country with land, pushing the price even higher.
But then I began to consider what additional costs I would have had on moving house. I estimate that I would have required an additional £100k in mortgage to gain the same kind of space.
I also then discovered this moving house calculator http://www.reallymoving.com/moving-cost-calculator
After working out my numbers, i calculated that you can part with an additional £25k across the following: £14,500 of stamp duty £7,500 in estate agents £1,500 in conveyancing, reports and certificates £1,500 in removal costs
My next move was to investigate a loft conversion and I have found the financial argument is a compelling one.
So, the downside first. I was going to live with about 10 weeks of disruption and would need to endure a new boiler (which did result in 2 leaks as it found the weak spots in the system), part of the side of my house being taken out, 2 internal wall moves, new ceilings and a constant layer of dust. Not to mention carpet replacements and internal painting, both of which are, for some reason, easy to forget.
The typical loft conversion is around £25-£30k in the north west of England. Mine came in at £45k, but I was converting about 44 square metres and there were a few extra touches. However, that price does include a new boiler, carpets, electrics, painting and a gazillion cups of tea and coffee for the professionals working on my house.
Recently however, an estate agent acquaintance of mine has suggested that the rise in price since converting the top floor is around £70k minimum in realised value. In other words, he would ask for another £100k, but would expect to land seven tenths of that. This tallies with a study recently published in the Guardian which identified that the additional value can be as high as £2 for every £1 spent. http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2011/may/03/loft-conversions-biggest-boost-house-values
So, not only could I have the pleasure of only half of the mortgage increase, but I add roughly the same value to the house AND avoid throwing £25k in the direction of lawyers, estate agents and the tax people. Result!
S&B Joinery are a team of builders who specialise in loft conversions in cheshire (UK)
They are online at http://www.loftconversions-cheshire.co.uk This internet resource provides a photographic tour of the portfolio of major projects that have recently been completed.
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