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Which renovations should you make to your home?

Which renovations should you make to your home?

There is no doubt that house renovations are getting increasingly popular these days and homes are getting upgraded for various reasons. Some are integrating smart home applications and devices, others are doing a complete remodel and there are those who simply want to raise the value of their home for selling. For whichever reason, renovations done have to be sensible and wise, ensuring that the homeowner regains a beneficial return on investment when the time comes to sell.

 

“As much as we’d like to think that the money we pour into renovations will come back at us in full when we sell our home, that’s rarely the case. However certain renovations add value immediately, some small and exterior-focused improvements offer better value than larger challenging renovations” states Craig Hutchison, CEO Engel & Völkers Southern Africa. If you are considering making some home improvements, you will want to understand a concept called ROI. ROI stands for return on investment, which means how much money you stand to get back on any particular renovation whenever you decide to sell your home.

 

Craig continues by warning that many clients choose to add lavish features, thinking that it would make their property stand out. Sometimes standing out might actually be the wrong thing to do, especially if it changes the price tag. One should always remember that what you like, might not be what the next owner would want in a home, and that would mean that they might not be willing to pay for your customisations. If you custom your home too much, you are narrowing your potential buyers down to a very niche few, and this could result in your home remaining on the market for years.

 

A good place to start is to check the value of the homes in the area to give you a good feel of your home’s value and how much you should spend on the renovations. The last thing you want to do is over capitalise. If you are hoping to make a significant return when selling your home, make sure that the exterior is on par with the rest of the neighbourhood by making minor improvements to create maximum appeal. It is always a good idea to speak to an estate agent in your area to get a sense of the value that doing such improvements could add, and how best to get your renovation to deliver a significant return in future.

 

Choose smaller renovations instead of major remodeling projects to see the greatest potential return on investment. “Renovations to kitchen and bathrooms can generate a return on investment of between 60-80%. You don’t necessarily need to spend a fortune on renovations. Replacing countertops and flooring with inexpensive tiles, re-enameling baths and basins and re-grouting existing tiles in a bathroom can all have a major impact on the aesthetics and thus the inherent value of the property. Replacing old taps, light fittings and towel rails and installing mirrors or even re-painting can make the room appear more spacious and clean” advises Ooba. Another area that can add significant value is the garden and the entrance to the house. Neat beds full of healthy plants, manicured lawns and well maintained boundary walls or fences all create a good impression of your home, and can be quite easily achieved.

 

Renovating? What is the best ROI?

 

 

Loft conversion +192%

It’s often the easiest cheaper and less disruptive way to create an extra space in your house. The loft could be used for an extra bedroom, workroom, TV-room, playroom, study, games room, extra storage or a private home office which will immediately add value.

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Going green +65%

Going green can seem totally overwhelming but it may be good to revise your home’s energy consumption. Many buyers look at the amount of energy a home saves because of the increase in electricity costs. Install solar heating panels, switch all or a few of your light bulbs to LED/CFLs, fix leaky taps, install water saving shower heads and have a timer installed on your geysers

 

Braai room +80%

There are two types of people those with braai rooms and those still wanting one. A braai room means being able to entertain, irrespective of the elements outside. A small unusable area can easily be altered into a practical braai area. Folding/sliding doors are also an option, enabling a person to have an area completely open when needed, yet closed when the need arises.

 

Decking / patio +133%

A deck/patio will provide you with more than a place to entertain outside and soak up the sun. Buyers see a deck as offering a seamless transition from inside to outside. It increases a home’s usable space – but costs only about half of what it would to build a new room. A well-made deck is something that can add real wow-factor as well as functionality.

 

Landscaping +?

A low maintenance garden could attract a buyer and can be just as appealing as a high maintenance garden. Making use of plants and shrubs that are indigenous to the area will alleviate unnecessary watering and maintenance. An automatic watering system and a water feature will add value to the garden.  Ensure that the existing plants and trees in your garden are pruned regularly.

 

Pool +%

If you live in a higher-end neighborhood and most of your neighbors have pools then not having a pool might make your home harder to sell. A pool can add value to your quality of life and enhance the enjoyment of your home; you can’t put a price tag on that. If it’s an upmarket area however, having a pool may be an expectation. Only the homeowner can determine the true return on this investment.

 

New bathroom +75%

Simple bathroom fixes are a great way to redecorate your home and add value, without having to invest a lot of money in renovations. Refresh the paintwork, deep clean, replace the taps, replace that shower curtain with a glass screen, and invest in a heated towel rail rather than a hook on the back of the door. Let plenty of light in – fit more or bigger windows if possible, think about installing skylights.

 

Redecorating +26%

Redecorating can make a property look brand-new. Add a splash of paint, your paintwork sends a strong message to buyers. Change the light switches, the standard white light switches tend to look yellow over time. Rethink window treatments, is the glass sparkling, check that the latches are working correctly. Revive the flooring, replace old rugs and ensure all of your flooring is clean and well kept.

 

New kitchen +80%
Redecorating your kitchen is one of the best ways to add value to your home. It’s essential to have it looking up-to-date, clean and functional. Replace kitchen cabinet doors/handles and drawer fronts, replace kitchen countertops. Add the wow factor with soft closings and some nifty storage solutions. Create as much space as possible. Use down-lights underneath the cupboards or in bulkheads to light splash-backs and countertops for a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

 

Garage +25%

Fit the garage with shelves and cupboard space and replace the garage door. Most homes have double garages – you could build a flat let above the garage. Talk to estate agents to find out what buyers in your area want most – living space, another bedroom, an office. Potential buyers could view this as a way of generating additional income as it could be rented out or even used as office space.

 

Security

This is possibly one of the most important features for re-sale value. Upgrading your home security will not only be lucrative for you when you decide to sell your property, but will also benefit you currently. Adding features like electric fencing, beams, and perhaps security cameras or merely upgrading your fencing will create a safer environment for you and for the potential buyer.

 

 

Traveling to Hoedspruit: Living or visiting – the best of both

Traveling to Hoedspruit: Living or visiting – the best of both

Hoedspruit – One of SA’s top property rental towns

If you are traveling to Hoedspruit, whether to live or simply for a holiday it is sure to cater for all. The name Limpopo derives from the Limpopo River. It is South Africa’s wildlife province and is a land of beautiful and contrasting landscapes with plenty game and nature reserves including the northern section of the Kruger National Park. It is a favourite destination for and sought-after by tourists for its big 5 game parks, birding, untamed bush landscapes and harbours an ancient African kingdom located at Mapungubwe National Park. The Great Escarpment with beautiful mountains, forests, rivers and waterfalls lure visitors to the area. Outdoor enthusiasts love to indulge in the activities on offer like abseiling, fishing, and white water rafting as well as hiking. Although most only visit the area when a break is due from the busy city life, many call it home. The spectacular game parks and natural attractions are just as influential to house hunters exploring the real estate market.

Real estate in Limpopo has proven to be as popular with locals as it is with foreigners. This broad area offers property choices from smallholdings to share options, there are also various residential properties, golf estates and security villages on offer. “Hoedspruit is among SA’s top rental towns, achieving highest rentals second to the Western Cape region, this being a remarkable example of rapid expansion in an area with low rental supply. If you are looking to buy an investment property, Hoedspruit will offer you a great return on your investment” states Ryan Forder, Licence Partner of Engel & Völkers Hoedspruit.

Residents and holiday home owners enjoy the quality of life, a life away from the city with the privilege of being in touch with nature. The towns’ amenities range from a local airport its own medical centre, quality food stores, and fine owner run restaurants with an array of both English and Afrikaans medium schools. Hoedspruit has a close knit community where all residents share a common denominator, the love for the untamed bush.

 

Area overview

Hoedspruit is one of the country’s premier eco-tourist destinations for visitors to the local game lodges and private reserves as well as to the Kruger National Park; it is situated at the foot of the world’s third largest canyon the Blyde River Canyon. Hoedspruit has fast become one of South Africa’s tourism and lifestyle focal points. In terms of property the Lowveld has plenty to offer. Hoedspruit lies in close proximity to game lodges and agricultural farmland. Visitors to this area are bush lovers and return 3-4 times per year to this unique biosphere and game viewing paradise. Hoedspruit is easily reached via a scenic drive from Johannesburg which roughly takes approximately 5 hours.

 

Average property value

Full title properties within the residential wildlife estates are placed on average around the R2 million margin (3 bedroomed) whilst share block properties within the Big 5 areas are on average between R6-8 million (full share). Large private farmland (over 100ha) within the popular Big 5 wildlife reserves such as Klaserie, Timbavati or Thornybush start from R30 million upwards.

 

Typical property type

Whilst a fair amount of properties are typical thatched bush lodges, construction companies have embraced a new trend of Chroma deck roofing which gives homes a classy farm-style appearance. Luxury homes are also starting to feature in some of the residential estates with ultra-modern designs of steel and glass.

 

Estate living

The top selling areas within Hoedspruit are the 2 residential wildlife estates, Raptor’s View Wildlife Estate and Hoedspruit Wildlife Estate. Real Estate in Hoedspruit is unique and each estate offers advantages and a unique lifestyle. If you do not have all the time in the world to explore the various options available to you, you can do a fair amount of research beforehand to single out some of the reserves and wildlife estates which might work for you. Engel & Völkers Hoedspruit can assist you with the individual estates rules and architectural guidelines which need to be considered before heading out to view properties.

 

Buying a property in and around Hoedspruit

Hoedspruit has seen some phenomenal growth in the property market. The Hoedspruit area saw the first residential wildlife estates being developed which at the time was a revolutionary concept providing for wilderness areas within a residential estate where game could continue to roam freely. Home owners can watch Africa’s iconic species from their patios and live in harmony with the natural environment. Needless to say that the lifestyle draws families and holiday makers alike to this unique area. A good percentage of property owners are foreigners who feature mostly within the second home market but often end up making Hoedspruit their permanent home once retired. For the more exclusive client our portfolio covers a broad spectrum of products that includes game farms, big 5 reserves and selected private and commercial game lodges as well as share block properties. Hoedspruit is also providing excellent investment opportunities for investors seeking to purchase and rent out to the ever-growing, unsaturated rental market.

 

10 reasons why you should invest in Hoedspruit

  • growing and strengthening micro-economy
  • proven history of capital growth in wildlife properties
  • quality of life
  • security and safety
  • local attractions, such as third largest canyon in the world
  • culturally dynamic
  • excellent schooling
  • farming and export hub
  • subtropical climate, mild winters
  • convenient access via Eastgate Airport

 

Best time to visit:

All year round due to the warm winters and increased game viewing opportunities when the bush is less dense.

 

What’s happening:

  • Hoedspruit Farmers Market (where only local produce is sold), 1st Saturday of each month
  • K2C Cycle Tour– an annual 95-kilometre mountain bike fundraising tour from the Kruger National Park to the Blyde River Canyon, passing through various private game reserves on the way in July, hosted by Hoedspruit Rotary Club

 

Did you know?

  • Most Hoedspruit restaurants source their fresh herbs from Hlokomela, an NGO that does valuable work in Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

 

Things to do in and around Hoedspruit