Many homeowners have a long list of things they would love to change about their property if they could, from fitting a conservatory in Stockport to having a loft extension. However, one of the most popular home improvements among the over-55s is to make their property environmentally friendly.
The latest home sentiment research from SunLife revealed the dream home renovation projects among those 55 years old and above, Best Advice reported.
It showed that while many people desired luxury additions to their abode, such as a sauna, Jacuzzi and balcony, lots also favoured more conscious projects, including turning their property into an eco home.
This was the most popular desire among men, while female homeowners preferred the idea of installing an indoor swimming pool. However, having an eco home was a close second choice, beating the likes of fitting a high-tech security system, having a greenhouse, and creating an alfresco outside dining area.
While the 1,001 respondents were asked what they would change about their property if money was not an option, many people over the age of 55 are likely to find they have substantial wealth tied up in their home.
According to SunLife, these property owners typically bought their homes more than two decades ago at an average price of £52,000. Therefore, they are likely to have increased in value by £135,000 by then. Although two-thirds (62 per cent) do not want to move property and release this money by buying a cheaper residence, the group’s Simon Stanney stated equity release could help them access funds.
“The cash released is tax-free and you can do what you want with it, whether that is home improvements, gifting to children or grandchildren, or building an indoor swimming pool,” the equity release director remarked.
Therefore, those who are able to release equity in their properties could make their dream home improvements a reality.
This includes transforming their abode into an environmentally-friendly home. To do this, they could install new double-glazed windows that will trap in the heat and keep the house warmer without relying as much on the central heating being on.
Other ways to create an eco home would be to fit solar panels on the roof, insulate cavity walls and the loft, use energy-saving light bulbs, install a water-saving showerhead, update the boiler with a more energy-efficient one, and buy furniture made from recycled materials.
Some of these changes are relatively easy to make, while others will require a bigger investment, but you can achieve them all if you spread them out over the years.
A few of the other dream home improvements mentioned in SunLife’s survey are more fantastical, including installing a cinema room, wine cellar, indoor bar, and a garden playground, which could be ideal for when grandchildren come to visit.
While these might not be in the pipeline, even after releasing equity, they could become more of a reality if homeowners are able to add even more value to their property.
They can do this by making some important, but simple, improvements to their residence, a report in The Sun states.
DIY jobs that cost as little as £4,000 could add as much as £44,000 to the value to their property, such as hanging mirrors to make the space look bigger, replacing the front door, and converting the garage.