Home own­ers in Scot­land ac­cel­er­ate home im­prove­ment plans as Brexit fails to dampen con­fi­dence

The Oban Times - - PROPERTY -

SIX in 10 (60 per cent) home­own­ers in Scot­land are plan­ning to carry out home im­prove­ments with an av­er­age spend of £4,160.15 over the next six months – con­tra­dict­ing re­cent reports of weak­ened con­sumer con­fi­dence, ac­cord­ing to new re­search by lead­ing roof win­dow man­u­fac­turer VELUX®.

The VELUX® 2017 Home Im­prove­ment sur­vey, re­leased to co­in­cide with Home Im­prove­ment Month in April, re­vealed that 14 per cent of home own­ers in Scot­land carry out im­prove­ments once ev­ery two to five months, with a fur­ther 24 per cent do­ing it ev­ery six to 11 months.

Con­trary to many re­cent reports sug­gest­ing a weak­en­ing of con­sumer con­fi­dence in the shadow of Brexit, Scot­tish home im­provers are will­ing to in­vest to cre­ate their dream home.

Al­most two-fifths of home im­provers in Scot­land ( 39 per cent) are plan­ning to spend up to £5,000, with 12 per cent ex­pect­ing to spend up to £10,000 on their pro­posed projects.

Ac­cord­ing to the find­ings, the ra­tio­nale for home im­prove­ment can be more emo­tional than ra­tio­nal. A quar­ter of home own­ers (26 per cent) who are plan­ning to im­prove their prop­erty over the next six months are do­ing so be­cause they love their home and the area they live in and don’t want to move. This is closely fol­lowed by 25 per cent of home­own­ers who are do­ing it do add value to their home.

This ‘ home sweet home’ phi­los­o­phy is also front of mind for al­most a third of home im­provers (29 per cent), whose main rea­son for home im­prove­ment is one of self-sat­is­fac­tion, sim­ply to make them feel good about them­selves. As a key rea­son for home im­prove­ment, it is ahead of adding value. And 10 per cent of home im­provers are look­ing to bring more day­light into the house.

The main fo­cus of home im­prove­ment plans is cos­metic, with 67 per cent plan­ning to paint and dec­o­rate. How­ever, al­most a third (27 per cent) are plan­ning a new kitchen or bath­room, fol­lowed by floor­ing and light­ing (21 per cent) and re­place­ment win­dows (14 per cent).

Adding more space through a garage con­ver­sion was cited by five per cent of home­own­ers and a fur­ther four per cent said they’d add more space through a loft con­ver­sion.

Grant Sned­don, prod­uct man­ager from VELUX®, said: ‘ De­spite wide­spread reports of weak­ened con­sumer and busi­ness con­fi­dence, our com­pre­hen­sive re­search un­der­lines a clear in­ten­tion from home­own­ers in Scot­land to con­tinue in­vest­ing in their homes.

‘ What’s per­haps more in­ter­est­ing is that home­own­ers are spend­ing out of a per­sonal pref­er­ence of cre­at­ing their dream homes, just as much as those who are spend­ing to in­vest in the fu­ture value of their prop­erty.

‘ Whether it’s by cre­at­ing an ex­tra room, con­vert­ing a loft, build­ing an ex­ten­sion or re­plac­ing a kitchen or bath­room, it ap­pears that home own­ers up and down the coun­try are re­al­is­ing the po­ten­tial of their homes and choos­ing to im­prove or to add to the space they have, in­stead of mov­ing to a dif­fer­ent prop­erty.’

UK-based in­te­rior de­sign blog­ger and stylist, Hege Mor­ris of Hege in France, said: ‘ The in­ter­net has helped to in­spire millions of people to re­alise the po­ten­tial of their house and have the courage to cre­ate their own dream homes.

‘Many home­own­ers now look be­yond the func­tional use of their home to cre­ate spa­ces which mean more to them. For some, this means cre­at­ing a per­sonal sanc­tu­ary where they can es­cape from the rigours of ev­ery­day life, man­age a home­run busi­ness or pur­sue a hobby.

‘For oth­ers, par­tic­u­larly those with fam­i­lies, we’re see­ing the con­tin­ued growth of large, light and bright, open liv­ing spa­ces, where they can spend more qual­ity time to­gether.’

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