Tuesday, 14 April 2015

4 affordable ways to take your home to the next level of luxury

Improving your home wherever you can is a solid strategy – on the one hand you’re improving the living conditions for yourself and your family, and on the other hand you’re increasing its value which will be useful if you ever come to sell the property.

Luxury is a big selling point. A house might be worth a decent amount, but the same house with a tennis court and a swimming pool in the back garden will always be worth more. For this reason, you should try and add features and improvements as much as you can afford to.
However, it’s important that costs don’t run away with you. The value that the new feature adds to the property as a whole shouldn’t exceed its cost, and if possible it should save money in the long-term – for instance, solar panels can be relatively expensive to install but ultimately mean that the homeowner pays less on their electricity bills.

With this in mind, here are five affordable ways for you to take your home to the next level of luxury.

Underfloor heating

There is arguably nothing more satisfying than walking barefoot on a warm floor, but underfloor heating systems go further than just heating the floor – they actually heat a room in the same way as a radiator, but more efficiently. Both electric coil and water pipe systems work just as well as each other, and both are affordable, with electric systems costing a maximum of around £800 and wet systems costing a maximum of around £1,700. There are various models which don’t even need to be professionally installed – anyone vaguely competent when it comes to DIY can pick them up off the shelves and install them on their own.

Hot tub

Why bother messing about with a normal bath when you can have a hot tub? Not only does it come with a huge range of health benefits but it can be plumbed into the main water system and installed by a professional relatively easily, as long as the bathroom has the space to fit it. This is a quick, luxurious addition to any home (though you may want to keep the shower for general washing purposes, actually), though it does come in at the high end of the “affordable” spectrum, with most models costing between £1,000 and £2,000. As a selling point, though, it is almost unsurpassable.

Fireplace/wood-burning stove

You can also save money on your heating bills by dusting off an old fireplace (if you have one) or installing a wood-burning stove – if you have a chimney cavity that isn’t being used, there’s no reason why that should remain the case. Wood-burning stoves can be installed and chimneys can be unblocked by anyone, and then the only expenditure required is for the fuel. Stoves can cost anywhere between £150 and £1,000. Making a fireplace or stove the main source of heat for your home will add a great deal of value to it.

Walk-in closet

 Possibly the most in-your-face entry on this list, the walk-in closet is always featured in films to show the super-rich pawing through their racks of Armani and using a stepladder to reach the perfect Prada shoes on the top shelf. Not only do you really need to have enough clothes that you wear regularly to make this addition to your home worthwhile, but you also need to have the space to expand (or sacrifice some of your bedroom). It’s difficult to estimate a cost, but based on an eight by ten foot walk-in, you can probably expect to spend between £1,000 and £2,000 on the closet itself and installation costs.

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