Performing a valuation is never as simple as it appears.
A property's true value can only be determined once you step inside and inspect in great detail. A home’s more obscure characteristics, from off-street parking to its historical significance, can often add a substantial premium.
In our most recent agent survey, Savills looked at what aspects might add to a home’s overall value. One new trend from sellers that stood out was tech and gadgets; ‘smart living’ almost always enhanced the price.
A home on a popular London street valued at £1.25m could command a premium of between 2 per cent to 8 per cent – approximately £25,000 – when the owners took their time to install state-of-the-art technology.
The rise of the ‘Gaggenau generation’ has seen tech-savvy homeowners invest considerable sums into the latest must-haves, revolutionising everyday tasks and household appliances in nearly every room.
Kitchens boast state of the art cookers, kettles boil in time for your first morning cuppa, whilst lighting can be controlled from anywhere using a phone or tablet. Wireless speakers ensure no matter where you are in your home you never miss a song, whilst your thermostat will remember how warm you like your home so it's ready when you get back from work. It's incredible to think how far technology has come since the introduction of the iPad only six years ago and today’s generation are more connected now than ever.
But it prompts the question, how much is too much? It’s important that tech-savvy owners invest in technology that’s easy to use; elderly or more traditionally-minded buyers may not be the most tech savvy. A home which runs from the tap of an iPad can be daunting for some, but at worst could even put a technophobic buyer off a sale. There are also maintenance costs to consider; when something goes wrong, it costs far more to fix and takes far longer to put right than just replacing a light bulb.
Ultimately, it’s important to strike the right balance when it comes to installing the latest mod-cons.
A well kitted-out kitchen can be an excellent reflection on a well-cared-for home and show that the owners take pride in their surroundings. But too much can be detrimental to a sale, alienating older buyers and others who are looking for a home they can put their stamp on.
However, I think these buyers will decrease over time; smart living is here to stay and technology has a powerful place in the home.