How to add extra appeal to your home

Central heating and double glazing top of the list for desirability in a home

Central heating and double glazing top of the list for desirability in a home - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The property market can be tricky to read, so if you’re thinking of putting your home up for sale, either now or in the future, how do you know how “saleable” it’s likely to be?

What’s hot? quizzed more than 2,000 people to find out what they want from a property.

The insurance website found a home that’s going to stay warm and cosy, and be energy efficient, is a big priority – with both central heating and double glazing coming out on top in terms of desirability. Many people also cited a new boiler as being a high priority.

With many valuables tucked away around the home, security is also high on people’s minds, with secure doors and windows appearing in fourth place of the top 20. Technology is also a key factor. The research suggests many home buyers will want to make sure their home will accommodate their gadgets and keep them connected to the wider world. Plenty of electrical sockets was found to be paramount, as was a good broadband connection for streaming films, and a living room big enough for a supersized TV.

...And what’s not?

There are also quite a few surprises when it comes to what didn’t make the top 20. Despite adding character, period features failed to make the list, suggesting some buyers maybe willing to forego charm in favour of practicality when it comes to property searches. While nearly two-thirds (65 per cent) of people were concerned with having a garden, a conservatory also failed to make the top 20.

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Open plan kitchens and living areas, and homes located near to highly-rated schools also didn’t make the cut. Matt sanders from Home Insurance says: “it is surprising to see previous must-haves, such as good schools and conservatories, fail to make the top 20. “However, our research shows that buyers are becoming more financially savvy and are willing to make compromises on finder details of a property to keep costs down and avoid expensive work in the future.”

How your home can become a must-have property

The findings suggest that a new boiler, extra plug sockets and modernising insulation could be a smarter investment than more traditional selling points if you’re looking to sell your home. But there are also steps you can take to brpaden your property’s appeal to buyers even if you don’t want to plough more money into it before selling up.

Sanders suggests: “it’s worth making small changes to the décor when it comes time to sell.”

The top 20 “must-haves” people

want to see in a property

1. Central heating

2. Double glazing

3. A garden

4. Secure doors and windows

5. Driveway or dedicated parking space

6. Plenty of electrical sockets

7. Local shops and amenities

8. A good broadband connection

9. Friendly neighbours

10. At least two toilets

11. A bath

12. A good energy efficiency rating

13. A new boiler/central heating system

14. A reliable, clear mobile signal

15. A shower cubicle

16. A garage

17. Cavity wall insulation

18. A landline telephone

19. A living room big enough for a large,

flat screen television

20. A dining room