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Is It True That Renovated Homes Sell Better in the Future?

October 5, 2020
BOOKMARK

We asked local real estate agents to share their thoughts on the matter, and also which renovations are best for your home’s future value.

For sure, cost is on the minds of many new homeowners when they start a renovation, but if you’re someone who takes the long view or has future plans to sell your home, whether a makeover will boost your property’s future value is probably a key consideration as well.

Stars of Kovan by Orange Interior

Interior Firm: Orange Interior

While there’s no 100% guarantee your investment on a renovation will pay off – mostly due to the myriad of factors that buyers find desirable/undesirable – it doesn’t hurt to have an idea of what you should (or shouldn’t) do to increase your home’s attractiveness to prospective buyers.

For this, we spoke to four PropertyGuru partner agents who shared their insights on how a renovation could impact your home’s future value as well as the features that home buyers in Singapore are willing to shell out more for.


1. So, is renovating your home going to increase its future value and make it more sellable?

The answer is both yes and no. Although the agents whom we spoke to all agreed that a renovated property is likely to result in a higher valuation by the banks, it’s worth taking note that new buyers might not take well to an over customised home.

Jalan Aruan by Forefront Interior

Interior Firm: Forefront Interior

“If the house is nicely renovated, it could give a buyer a very good first impression. And this feel-good impression could improve the chances of selling a house.

I recently sold an HDB flat that was renovated 5 years ago. The buyer fell in love with it. Eventually, it was sold with a $35,000 Cash-Over-Valuation. The flat was in a 100% move-in condition and it helped the buyer to save on his renovation cost and time.”

- Danny Han, OrangeTee & Tie

Jalan Aruan by Forefront Interior

Interior Firm: Forefront Interior

“Renovating a home definitely affects its future value and its attractiveness to buyers. But in a way, it’s a double-edged sword.

If your home has a highly personalised look and feel, it could end up being less attractive to younger couples who are keen on having a home of their own design. Some homeowners might also be put off by the thought of buying over a heavily renovated home due to the additional hacking or demolition costs that they’ll incur during their own renovation.”

- Justin Kwek, Propnex Realty

2. Families tend to prefer renovated homes, while young couples don’t.

Just because a house is extensively renovated doesn’t mean that it’s going to appeal to all segments of homebuyers in Singapore.

Buyers who are in their mid-twenties to early thirties tend to prefer resale homes in their original condition (read: with minimal renovation work done) whereas those who fall outside of this age range tend to prefer units that are partially or fully renovated to their tastes.

Pasir Ris by Space Atelier

Interior Firm: Space Atelier

“In my experience, buyers who are between the ages of 26 – 32 years old tend to place more emphasis on having a home of their own design. They tend to go for original condition houses as these homes tend to be less pricey than renovated ones. Meanwhile, buyers who are beyond this age group tend to go for houses that are move-in ready.”

- Tjhai C., ERA Realty Network

Pasir Ris by Space Atelier

Interior Firm: Space Atelier

“Buyers below the age of 35 who have high earning power will typically want homes that they can fully renovate to their tastes.

On the other hand, buyers who are above 35 tend to hunt for units that are partially or fully-renovated to reduce their renovation expenses. Buyers in this segment tend to have families, which means they’ll have higher monthly expenses, so any reduction in cash outlay is something that they’ll surely appreciate.”

- Justin Kwek, Propnex Realty

3. Minimalist décor and well-maintained spaces tend to score better with local home buyers.

There’s truth to the saying that “less is more” because Singapore homebuyers tend to prefer homes with minimalist themes. The same goes for houses with proper upkeep as they tend to make better first impressions on buyers than those without.

Sembawang Close by Urban Home Design 二本設計家

“Most buyers tend to keep an eye out for well-maintained homes. Style is important, but not as much as condition. When it comes to maintenance, the kitchen, followed by the toilet are areas that families pay the most attention to. Flooring is another important feature as well, because if it’s well-maintained, that could save the young couples time and money spent on hacking.”

- Darren Ong, OrangeTee & Tie

Sembawang Close by Urban Home Design 二本設計家

“Interior designs featuring white themes tend to be better received by the general market. Based on recent transactions that I’ve handled, homes with upgraded wiring, plumbing and maximised layouts not only have higher perceived value to buyers, but also receive higher valuations as well.”

- Tjhai C., ERA Realty Network

4. Overly bulky built-ins and strong colours tend to be less attractive to Singapore home buyers.

Design is subjective, which is why sometimes it’s hard to pin down what might attract a potential buyer. However, there are certain design features which are definite no-no’s in the eyes of Singapore home buyers, such as overly bulky built-ins and gaudy colours.

Canberra Street by erstudio

Interior Firm: erstudio

“Having too much built-in carpentry, such as study tables, cabinets and beds, isn’t always desirable. Even if they’re in impeccable condition, their design might not suit a buyer’s taste. In the case of older fixtures, removing them might damage the flooring which a buyer intends to keep.”

- Danny Han, OrangeTee & Tie

“Homes with striking colours, for example, bright red, orange, yellow and hot pink, aren’t as popular among locals and it’ll take a longer time for the ‘right’ buyer to come along.”

- Tjhai C., ERA Realty Network

5. Home features aside, here are more factors that could influence how well your flat sells.

While some certain aspects such as noise, neighbours and your unit number are probably out of your control, it’s worth bearing in mind that there are other influencing factors which you can manage, so as to ensure visiting buyers will leave with a good impression of your home.

Holland Avenue by Flo Design

Interior Firm: Flo Design

“The view and the direction that a house is facing are some uncontrollable factors that can influence its value on the market. Unit numbers as well. There was once when I had a buyer who made an offer that matched the quoted price immediately after seeing the unit number, which was #08-118.”

- Tjhai C., ERA Realty Network

Holland Avenue by Flo Design

Interior Firm: Flo Design

“Believe it or not, but your neighbours are an important factor as well. It’s always good to have a strong relationship with them, so that all your viewings can be conducted in the best conditions possible.

For proper home-staging, ensure your kitchen is grease-free, keep your living and bedrooms tidy, and finally make sure that there are no leak marks around your air cons.”

- Justin Kwek, Propnex Realty


Looking to sell your home?

Browse PropertyGuru’s directory of the top property agents in Singapore. For more questions, tips and resources related to buying and selling your home, check out the AskGuru forum and PropertyGuru’s guides!

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