From freshwater pools and smart tech to kitchens that do it all and outdoor pergolas, experts reveal the features you should be adding to your home to boost its value in 2023.
Natural freshwater pools
In high-value properties, a natural freshwater swimming pool can increase its value even more.
This might seem surprising as outdoor swimming pools are notorious for reducing the value of a home with the extra maintenance and cost that comes with them, while indoor pools come with their own complexities.
“The demand for indoor pools has been on the decline for some time now; they are expensive to heat, tend to be heavily chlorinated and not particularly enjoyable to use in good weather,” says Marc Schneiderman, director, Arlington Residential.
“Perhaps also as a result of COVID lockdowns and with the UK experiencing hotter summers, we are seeing many more buyers searching for homes with natural, freshwater pools in the garden which are chemical free and kind to the environment.
“These pools are beautifully designed and use natural pool technology which requires less maintenance and is much more cost effective to run.”
Creating an ‘indoors’ space outside
The pandemic led to outdoor space being prioritised but how you use your outdoor space is just as important as how much of it you have.
Gardens that have some kind of all-weather feature, which brings the indoors out, are especially popular and will be seen as more valuable.
“[One] trend is to create an outdoor space that ties in with the indoors, creating a cohesive look and feel throughout the home,” says Yasmin Ulhaq, of Glenfield Property Management.
“This can be done by adding a pergola to the back of a house, incorporating fencing into a garden or creating a private deck off a bedroom.”
Electric charging points
With more and more people investing in electric cars, it’s unsurprising that adding a convenient, private electric charging point at your home is a great way to boost its value — even in London.
“Something we are noticing particularly with Mews houses is the rise in owners installing electric charging points,” says Billy Harvey, head of sales at Lurot Brand.
“Mews houses lend themselves very well to this, as they are usually freehold and have garages or dedicated outside parking space which allow for convenient charging.”
Jenny Naylor, brand consultant, Henigman, said: “Homes that generate power through renewable sources and have features such as the Tesla Powerwall for charging electric vehicles, are likely to be at a premium compared to similar homes without these features.”
Heat pumps or solar panels
When it comes to eco-features, the most important is having an energy-efficient home which is powered by a heat pump or solar panels.
Not only are they good for the environment, but they will save you (or whoever buys your home) money.
“Young professionals coming into the market don’t want to be spending £400 plus a month on their energy bills when they could be paying £150,” says Anton Frost, partner at Carter Jonas.
“It’s crucial for investors too, they don’t want to be left with older properties not insulated properly, especially as we move nearer to the deadline when all rental homes need a minimum EPC rating of C.”
Kitchens are king
Once small rooms, deliberately hidden away out of sight, kitchens have now become the heart of a home, and the mantra that “kitchens sell houses” has never been truer.
“Kitchens have been incredibly popular post COVID. For us, it’s the central hub of the home for the entire household. We dine, work, and relax in our kitchens more than ever before,” says Ulhaq.
Today's kitchens have to go way beyond 'multi-functional', they have to meet the needs of your household's day-to-day routines and lifestyle.”
Using smart tech is a great way to add value to your home and make it stand out from similar priced properties, and the good news is you don’t even need to spend thousands of pounds.
“To add real value, items such as video cameras for security systems are the most popular, but this could be as simple as a video doorbell to add instant curb appeal,” says Steph Briggs of La Di Da Interiors.
“Smart heating systems, such as the Hive, appeal to house buyers looking to minimise bills.”
David Phillips, property expert at Property Rescue, says: “Smart ovens are one of the hottest buys for homeowners looking to really give their home that luxury feel but won’t be wasted when it comes to selling.
“The features are endless, from voice commands and providing the ability to adjust the temperature and preheat to self-cleaning functions that make it easier to clean.”
Water purification systems
Often it’s the little things that appeal to potential buyers and integrated water filters are having a moment.
As well as being practical, there are health benefits, and they can even make your household gadgets last longer.
“Water filters and softeners are something many homeowners are adding and considering, it's a practical feature with a variety of benefits and won’t be something you’ll regret when it comes to resale value,” says Gene Fitzgerald at BOS.
“Improving water quality in your home can make it taste better and reduces the presence of harmful chemicals and contaminants.
Read more: Could staging help sell your home?
“Hard water is also known for its ability to shorten the lifespan of many appliances — so making the investment can lead to cost savings as well as improve energy efficiency when it comes to your water heater by helping to avoid mineral build-up and resulting in lower energy bills over time.”
Naylor says: “Reverse osmosis water systems which remove the chlorine from pool water to make it drinkable, are also a way of future proofing the home and could boost its value.”
Hot water taps
Another water-related way to boost your home is by ditching the kettle in favour of a hot water tap. Models such as Quookers are becoming increasingly popular in a market that values speed and energy efficiency.
“A hot water tap provides instant convenience to your home, saves on space and is more energy efficient than other methods used to heat water,” says Phillips.
“Some models can even dispense filtered and sparkling water, helping eliminate plastic bottle use and potentially making your home more appealing to potential buyers.”