Last update12:12:22 PM

Back You are here: Home Property Building and Renovating Upping the Value of Your Bulgarian Property

Upping the Value of Your Bulgarian Property

Don't move, improve. Now is the time to add value to your property in Bulgaria through home improvements. In the last few years home owners didn't need to worry about the cost of any improvements they may have made to their property as it was such a rising market. It's a different story now and any improvements you make to your property in Bulgaria need to add value to the price as an investment for the future. Your home in Bulgaria is one of the largest assets you may possess. It doesn't matter whether you intend to live in it for ever or simply sell it in a couple of years, it still makes sense to look after it and improve it.

One way to place yourself in a better position for when the banks ease lending and more buyers come back to the market, is to boost the value of your property with some renovations. You don't need to set out on high-priced projects as you may be unlikely to recover all of the costs involved in these. However, you can embark on some low-cost improvements which will not only mean that you will enjoy your home more whilst you own it and use it but will also put a little more on the price when you come to sell.

Pouring your hard-earned money into improvements is no fool-proof way of increasing the value of your home, so what are the best improvements which will pay off when it's time to sell?

The answer is not straight-forward. Major renovations will rarely pay any return in the short term and will be unlikely to cover their costs if you sell within three years. One simple rule is never to do major projects which will increase the value of your property to more than 20% over the most expensive house in your immediate vicinity as the other houses around you will drag the value down.

Major projects aside, there are some real winners which will pay for themselves and make sure that the condition of your property cannot be used against you if you come to sell.

Starting with the basics, there are several things which can immediately put a buyer off:
- roof leaks
- old electrics
- old plumbing
- no alarm system
- no heating or air conditioning

Sort these essentials first.

Then you need to present the house as well as you can, bringing the whole property up to a reasonable and consistent standard so that everywhere overall looks good. It has been proven that the impact of an attractive property will more quickly achieve a sale as the buyer can more easily envisage the property as their home.

Short term cheap improvements

Probably the most obvious as a quick and easy improvement. A fresh lick of paint can make a huge difference to the rooms. Unless you want to paint a second time before you put your home on the market, it is best to stick to neutral tones. Remember to do as many rooms as are needed to get a consistent look throughout the property. This is the fastest and cheapest way to make your home more appealing.

The exterior
The approach to your house should be welcoming. It's depressing for you if every time you come home you think to yourself that you really must fix those gates. Imagine how a buyer will feel. A tired facade will put buyers off, who may not even want to set foot in the place. This improvement is shown by NAEA data to be the one which adds the most value to your property. First impressions count!

It is surprising how changing light switches and sockets can make a difference. This is very inexpensive but if you are unsure about how to do this, get an electrician.

Make sure all doors open and shut properly, without squeaking. A quick and simple fix for an updated look is to replace the door handles, so that they are new and the same throughout the property. Keep the style consistent and make sure you buy enough of them in one go and don't have to go back to buy more, only to find they have run out.

Depending upon the units you have, it may be time to freshen up the kitchen cupboards. A fresh coat of paint on the cabinets can really update your kitchen.

Your home will have a higher perceived value if it is tidy and clean. Time to tidy up! Get rid of any excess clutter to make rooms appear larger. Keep the house clean. Not only is this better for your own psyche but is important to buyers. Cheapest of all improvements!


Long term improvements

If you are looking over the longer term of more than three years, then larger projects can be considered as have an impact on the value of your home.

Whilst they are not automatically guaranteed to generate profit, they will make your home easier to sell. Long term projects may include:

Kitchens - the most common improvement but bear in mind that you are only likely to get a return of the actual cost of this invesment

Double Glazing - if you have an old Bulgarian property, then secondary glazing is the way to go. Not only does this keep the authentic aspect of the home but it is cheaper than new double glazing, so your return will be better

Modernising - keep any works in character with the property andn don't remove original features

If you are considering adding a pool, then do it because you want it and will use it yourself. Buyers can even be put off by a pool as in their minds they are worried about running costs and, possibly, if they have small children, dangers.

Added value

The NAEA has produced data for how much improvements add to the value of property:

1 An extension - 10 to 50%
2 New kitchen - 5 to 10%
3 Loft conversion - 5 to 10%
4 Off-road parking - 10%
5 Creating an en suite bathroom - 0 to 5%
6 Upgrading the exterior - 15%

In today's depressed property market more and more owners are taking care of their home and investing in improvements. Before you run for the nearest diy store, think carefully about what upgrades you are going to do.