Housing MM Online – Britons continue to renovate their homes during covid

The last 12 months has seen Britons spend a total of £55 billion on home renovations, with an average of £4,000 per household.

With the covid pandemic and lockdown restrictions, people have had to stay in their homes more than ever – and home renovations have come hand-in-hand. With 63% telling Money.co.uk that it is due to spending more time at home, around 27% of those surveyed said that it was due to increasing the value of their home and 22% said they had more disposable income.

Home renovations have included fixing up kitchens, new bathrooms, loft conversions and most popular, home offices or studies, home gyms and garden offices.

The rise in home renovations has seen the market for secured loans and home improvement loans flourish, consistent with the same level of funding seen pre-covid.

David Beard, founder of secured lending broker Lending Expert, commented: “Secured loans and homeowner loans are back to funding at regular levels, which is really great to see. This time last year, a lot of lenders had paused altogether due to the pandemic and things were looking bleak.”

“But the appetite of lenders is still very much there and funding remains high for things like second charge mortgages and other loans secured against your home. This has been largely driven by the extended stamp duty holiday and the desire of UK homeowners to renovate and maximise their living space during the rest of the pandemic.”

When it comes to adding value to your home and finding the best return on home improvements, it is mostly to do with square footage. With kitchen extensions, loft conversions and even conservatories likely to add the most value.

Whilst covid may create financial uncertainty for some, the average household in the UK saving around £4,000 to £12,000 in the last year by foregoing eating out at restaurants, going to venues, travel and spending on holidays, the largest expense.

“Many homeowners see the opportunity to add renovations to their homes, offering greater utility in the short term as we see out covid, whilst also maximising the value of their homes for resale.”

With the further extension of the stamp duty deadline until 30th June 2021, first-time buyers and those looking to downsize will save up to £15,000 on purchasing properties up to £500,000. After this deadline, for the stamp duty for similar properties and those up to £925,000 will rise to 5%.