12 Factors to Look Out For Which Can Adversely Affect House Values
If you are thinking about selling your home, you will want to achieve the highest sale price possible, so try and avoid any negative issues affecting house values. Unfortunately, some factors drive down the value of your home, and not all of them are within your control. We’ve listed 12 below.
1. Nuisance neighbours – property values reduced on average by £31,000
According to Halifax, living next to nuisance neighbours in the UK can reduce average homes values by up to £31,000. Neighbours who cause excessive noise, intimidate residents, create graffiti and carry out criminal damage can give an entire neighbourhood a bad reputation, and that could deter potential buyers from even viewing your property. Nuisance neighbours and antisocial behaviour do negatively affect house values in every part of the UK.
2. Home improvements without planning permission can reduce house values
Illegal extensions and some home improvements can significantly impact price when selling a home, and those legal issues will become the responsibility of new owners. Planning permission applies to most house extensions – although there are some exemptions. The cost of rectifying these problems, using retrospective planning permission or demolishing illegal improvements can be significant. Staying on the right side of the law involves enquiring about or researching the planning permission rules that apply to your proposed home improvement. Visi the Government planning portal for more information. Be careful what home improvements you do as they may negatively affect house values.
3. Poorly performing schools in the area may affect property prices
OFSTED reports are made freely available on the Internet. Poor results can deter parents from buying homes in the catchment areas of the responsible schools; apparently, poor school performance can impact the value of your home. This reduced demand has an inevitable consequence of home values in the area. Conversely, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, households in the catchment area of schools with favourable OFSTED reports can attract premiums of up to 8 per cent over and above the sale prices of similar homes in other regions.
4. High levels of crime in the area, who will want to buy my home?
Crime rates are available from the local police as well as specialist property sites. Areas with higher-than-average crime rates are straightforward to identify. Crime rates can affect local house values – and therefore, avoided by potential buyers without further investigation. Increased security measures and the formation of neighbourhood watch schemes can counteract this phenomenon to some degree, however, which can mean a more favourable house valuation should you be thinking of selling.
5. An unsavoury history, how much will this knock off your home’s value?
Unfortunately, there are just some things about a home that is entirely out of the owner’s control, if it was the scene of a gruesome crime or has an unwanted history. For example, 23D, Cranley Gardens in Muswell Hill was for sale in August 2013 for £240,000. It seems that the value of the home where notorious mass murderer Dennis Nilsen butchered his victims has been permanently affected by its horrific past, as recent home sales at the time were £385,000. If you discover that your home has an unsavoury history, then it may devalue.
6. Living on a known flood plain can lead to lower house values
As well as being prone to flood damage, buying homes on known flood plains attract notoriously high insurance premiums deterring buyers worried about facing expensive building insurance premiums or the refusal of home insurance altogether. Therefore if you are affected by a floodplain, it can reduce the value of your home.
7. New developments, mobile mast or electric pylon, not in my back garden!
A home can face a sudden and steep drop in its value because of unexpected events in the area. For instance, the announcement of a new electricity pylon or mobile telephone mast in the area is likely to hurt the value of neighbouring homes.
8. Allowing pets to take over the property may lower the value of your home
Pet owners can become immune to the smells, mess, and disruption that pets create in a home. However, viewing homes where animals live can easily be put off by aggressive, smelly or dirty pets. If your home is alienating a proportion of people seeing it as a result of ‘smelly pets,’ then this will inevitably lead to reduced demand – something that could reduce its value considerably. Avoid this and keep your home’s value where it should be, on a par with every other similar home to yours – only ask the in-laws or neighbours to be blunt with you and mention any unwanted pet smells or odours – it could save you money in the long run!
9. Niche home improvements, keep the middle of the road
While the stone-cladding on your property’s exterior may have seemed like a good idea at the time, this niche home improvement is likely to alienate a significant number of potential home buyers and could adversely affect its value. On the other hand, homes neutrally decorated and furnished won’t have the potential to offend. Instead, prospective buyers will be more likely to picture themselves moving straight in, which can translate to an improved house valuation and a higher final sale price.
10. Poor property maintenance, a home exterior in a state of disrepair
The term ‘kerb appeal is trendy amongst estate agents in the UK at the moment, and it relates to making first impressions count. Creating a positive image for buyers from the time they arrive will increase the likelihood of forming a positive impression of your property. However, if your home has fallen into a state of disrepair, you run the risk of putting buyers off before they even step foot inside, and it may adversely affect the selling price. Look for similar properties to yours on Zoopla or Rightmove and see which ones have been on the market for a long time; you’ll notice it tends to be the ones poorly kept or with weak kerb appeal that are sticking.
11. Proximity to wind farms and property prices
According to a recent article on The Telegraph website, some property experts believe that new wind farms reduce local property prices by up to 8 per cent. While the political and environmental pressure for more wind farms is increasing, it seems they could be driving property prices downwards because of their aesthetic impact on the surrounding countryside. However, wind farms do adversely affect house prices and property values.
12. No off-street or private parking facility puts off buyers
Parking a car on public roads overnight can significantly increase a person’s car insurance premiums. The security and insurance implications of not having a private driveway or garage can put some car-owning buyers off purchasing your home. Therefore no off-street parking can reduce both the demand for your home and its value.
The factors that determine your home’s market value at any given time are highly complex, and many of them are subject to change regularly. However, by being aware of some of those factors, you and the company selling your home can plan the sale of your home accordingly.