How to add value to your home (and what not to do)

A well-built garden room that can be used as an office, gym or additional sitting room is a good way to add floor space to your home without the need for planning permission – provided it is within certain limits (ie less than 2.5m) in height, does not occupy more of 50 percent of the land surrounding the house, which is no closer to a road than the house itself. Properties in protected areas and listed buildings will have additional restrictions).

Expect to pay around £15,000 for a good quality garden room – which should add 1.5 times its cost to your home’s value.

Similarly, converting a garage into a living space can add 10-15 percent of the value, according to David Westgate of Andrews real estate advisors — food for thought for garage owners, 70 percent of whom are reported not to use their cars to house a car.

Westgate also points out that it’s another good way to add usable living space “without having to spend time and money laying foundations and building walls and a roof.” The conversion of a garage that is an integral part of the home must fall within the permitted development, and can cost as little as £7,500 according to Checkatrade. If the garage is separate from the house, planning permission may be required for a change of use.

Make some adjustments

Decorating your home is the cheapest way to make a big change, but can a coat of paint really add value? Stipendium research indicates that a comprehensive redecorating, at an average cost of just under £3,000, can add 3.1 per cent to the value of your home.

The style you choose can affect this, however: A modern and neutral palette is a safer option than a patterned wallpaper or decorative feature paint.

Likewise, landscaping may improve the aesthetic appearance of an outdoor space, but is unlikely to add much value: the same research saw an average expenditure of £3,750 resulting in a return of £125.

Calling all self-builders, remodelers, remodelers, converters and extenders

The 2022 Daily Telegraph Home Building and Renovation Awards are open and we want to hear all about your completed projects and the challenges you’ve overcome. This is your chance to showcase your hard work.

Our awards program has been championing Britain’s most inspiring home projects for nearly 30 years, encouraging others on their building journey.

With over 10 categories, the awards have put the effort and dedication of the homeowners in the spotlight to celebrate the hard work and ambition needed to complete such a project.

In addition to searching for a great home design, we want to hear about all the special special moments and the amazing design and build team behind each unique home.

We welcome homes of all shapes and sizes – from tiny buildings to grand barn conversions – and we include finished homes to a range of budgets, styles and designs.

One of the shortlisted projects will be selected as our 2022 home and homeowners will win £1,000 John Lewis vouchers.

The prizes only take 2 minutes to enter and are free to enter.

We can’t wait to see your photos and hear all about your projects. Good luck and God bless you!

How do you enter your project?

To enter online, complete the sign-up form at

  • If by mail, send the form to Future PLC, Quay House, The Ambury, Bath BA1 1UA.
  • The deadline for entering the awards is June 3, 2022.
  • The project must be completed (or at least very soon) in order to qualify for the competition and entries must be attached (both online and by mail):
  • Floor plans (“before” and “after” where applicable)
  • At least two “before” photos when applicable
  • 10 interior photos (living room, kitchen, etc.)
  • At least one photo from the outside.
  • Shortlisted projects can be visited in person by our Awards Committee and will be featured both in the newspaper and online, so you must be prepared for the photography of you and your home.
  • Some of the winners will also be shown in the Daily Telegraph.
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