ARTICLE: Alistair Helm, CEO Real Estate NZ

The very clear inference in this question is that you want to add value to a property you are looking to buy. The majority of property buyers fall neatly into two camps: those looking to take on some work to improve the appearance of a property, and those who want an easy life and would like to move straight in with no work to be done. A recent survey on showed that well over half of all prospective buyers were looking to buy a property that needed some renovating work to be completed.

The scope of work to renovate a home will naturally reflect on the budget, the potential and the confidence of the buyers. It’s a tall order to buy a derelict property that needs major renovations as a first project. It’s better to take on some easier work first – a new kitchen, or a simple paint and decorate job. Bolstered with some experience and confidence you can then go on to more ambitious projects.

In assessing candidate properties it is important to do your homework regarding any preceding work. For example, is there a Code of Compliance issued for the work? Access to property files at local authorities is invaluable these days as they contain detailed architect’s plans from any prior work that has been completed. If you are looking for a medium level of work it is worth checking out properties with sound skeletons – the piling is new, the plumbing has been replaced and rewiring is completed but the place still looks a mess. These properties provide a great opportunity as the finishing details are all practical tasks for the average do-it-yourself-er.

If you are not into DIY but like the idea of a do-up then it is even more important to gather a team of tradespeople with the requisite skills to be able to complete the work in a timely manner, and to a defined budget.

You might be interested in reading: Key steps that will help you plan your home renovation.


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This column featured in Issue 001 of Renovate Magazine. Renovate Magazine is an easy to use resource providing fresh inspiration and motivation at every turn of the page. 

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*All information is believed to be true at time of publishing and is subject to change.

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