MANAGING DIRECTOR OF CENTRAL LONDON ESTATE AGENCY, KAY & CO
Q.I have a small patio garden at my house in central London but am considering putting up a conservatory in the space so that I can use it all year round. Will this help me when I sell?
A.On the face of it this seems like a sensible idea. After all, this increases your internal square footage and provides you with additional space you can use all year round. I would, however, very much advise against it. Outside space in central London is extremely sought after and given its rarity buyers will pay a premium for it. We have found several examples of houses that have made such alterations recently and have in turn struggled to sell alongside houses that did not. The great majority of central London buyers favour outside space over a conservatory.
Q.I live in a one-bedroom flat that only has an en-suite bathroom. Is it worth spending the money to create a separate guest toilet?
A.You should certainly carry out this alteration provided it does not have a major negative impact on the quality of space in either the bedroom or living room. If both of these rooms are still a good size after the alterations then you should definitely look to do this. Buyers tend to favour flats where there is a guest toilet if the only other bathroom is an ensuite. People tend not to like visitors having to go through their bedroom to use the toilet, so it is definitely a good move. Just consider the position of the waste pipes in your flat before you start. This will probably restrict where the second toilet can be located, you may have to use a saniflo system, but be warned these can be prone to breaking.
Martin Bikhit is Managing Director of central London estate agents and block managers, Kay & Co, which specialises in the sale, rental and management of property throughout Marylebone, Mayfair, Regent's Park, Hyde Park, Bayswater, Paddington, Fitzrovia and the West End. Bikhit has worked in residential property since 1997 and acts for major property owners and developers including The Howard de Walden Estate and The British Land Company. Bikhit is also a past secretary of the central London branch of the National Association of Estate Agents. Visit www.kayandco.com for more information.