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A new study has suggested that one specific feature of a home could knock up to £13,500 off of its sale price.
According to a Direct Line home insurance survey, 44% of adults agreed that only having a downstairs bathroom would put them off buying a property.
And that figure was even higher with London homebuyers, of whom 57% said it would make them not want to put in an offer.
The study goes on to suggest that keeping your bathroom downstairs could reduce the price of your property by 6%, which would work out to around £13,500 in line with the average house price – according to the Daily Mail.
Many homes in the UK will have a downstairs bathroom, given that many of the popular Victorian terraced homes were originally built in this way. But these days, it’s probably fair to say that homebuyers favour space downstairs over a bathroom – and many would prefer a bathroom upstairs.
Direct Line also pointed out that lots of downstairs bathrooms are accessed through kitchens – something seen as rather undesirable.
Dan Simson, head of home insurance at Direct Line, said, “‘Downstairs bathrooms are usually found in older properties accessed through the kitchen and despite them featuring in thousands of homes across the UK, they divide opinion.
“With some home buyers actively avoiding properties like this and others finding them much more convenient, especially if they are less mobile or have young children,’
Jasper Colliver, head of Savills Wandsworth, also told the Daily Mail that home owners could increase their properties price by repurposing the downstairs bathroom and adding an extension.
In fact, 25% of estate agents advised that home sellers may want to move their bathroom upstairs prior to listing, for a better chance at selling.
He said, “Where there is an existing bathroom on the ground floor, a homeowner might look to re-purpose it as a utility and cloakroom.
“Almost always, family homeowners will prioritise creating more living space downstairs over anything else. In period terrace properties, this will usually take the form of a side return or rear extension.”
Potential home sellers should proceed with caution however if they want to move a bathroom from downstairs to upstairs. It can be a pricey and messy job, and will need to comply with planning regulations.
Dan said, “Home owners who are planning home renovations should let their insurer know about any changes being made to their house, as any work that involves walls being knocked down, floors being taken up, plumbing or electrical work, can result in damage to the property. Having builders and other trades coming and going with spare keys also increases the security risk,
“Once the building work has been completed, householders should inform their insurer of any changes that have been made to their property, as adding bedrooms or bathrooms can not only add value to their home, but also change their home insurance requirements,”
However, it can certainly be worth it – particularly if it increases the price of your property in the long run.