Traditionally, property has been a good investment. That has not always been the case in the short term but certainly over the medium to long term it will outperform any other investment. In the UK, home ownership has been higher than on mainland Europe. While the financial climate is beginning to put a few more obstacles in the way of people wishing to buy, many people who have yet to be able to buy still have ambitions.
They say an Englishman’s home is his castle. It is a saying that has been used for years. The concept dates back to the 17th century. It covers more than just the rights to occupy land; it includes the rights to defend it. As with anything, people have rights as well as responsibilities. The deeds of a property spell out exactly what is contained in a specific property yet there are regular disputes on boundaries and right of way. Many disputes end up in court, costly cases where even the winners can find themselves well out of pocket.
In recent months confidence has returned in the UK housing market and it has often translated into couples and families looking to improve their homes. Renovations and extensions are generally a cheaper way to create more space than to move home. That incurs stamp duty and fees that can be a disincentive. Wherever a family has land, it can extend its home out through sliding patio doors to enjoy the garden more, especially in the summer.
A bit extreme
Planning restrictions have been eased for people looking to extend. Out of courtesy they should tell their neighbours about their plans, especially if their plans will make an impact on the community. Mr. and Mrs. Taylor in Gerard’s Cross in Buckinghamshire did that but also disregarded objections and it resulted in their being ordered to pull up their ’patio’, and effectively being £200,000 out of pocket. To be fair, their plans were fairly extreme. It was not just a matter of simple home improvements. They were plans that seriously inconvenienced immediate neighbours.
In the vast majority of cases ordinary home improvements are planned and discussed. Once the ‘go ahead’ is given, companies like http://www.patiomaster.co.uk are only too happy to be part of a project to improve a home. Things like doors and windows are now being almost exclusively manufactured of man-made materials. They can be any colour and style, they will provide better insulation and are certainly more durable than wood.
An increasing asset
A house is likely to be the biggest asset the vast majority of people will own. It is something that should be well maintained and improved where possible. There have been a number of years of stagnation in property value but growth is returning, 9% as a national average, and much more in London and the South East. Can there have been a better time in recent years to begin thinking about improvements? The property market depends on demand at all levels. Those wishing to get onto the ladder are finding schemes introduced to help them. Those that improve their existing homes may find themselves able to move further up on the ladder.