Tag Archives: House Value

Unusual Celebrity Homes

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So earlier this week, we took a look at some of the fanciest homes of the rich and famous. These are the homes of the people who’ve made it big in life. With a seemingly endless supply of money, there’s limitless opportunity available when it comes to building or buying a new home or two. Today however, we’re going to be looking at some of the more unusual celebrity homes out there. Let’s take a sneaky peek through the door.

Christina Aguilera – baby’s room
We found this pic on hometone.com – not exactly the decor you’d imagine for a baby’s room is it? That grumpy faced crescent moon would definitely give us nightmares, and we wouldn’t fancy waking up to the strangely happy love cloud (if that’s what it is) on the wall. Nevertheless, you’ve got to admit, that Christina’s baby probably has the most unique child’s bedroom ever.

 

John Travolta’s house
It’s not all that unusual for major celebs to have access to their own plane. What you tend not to expect however, is that they will design their house to look (and act) like a runway. Well, that’s exactly what John Travolta did, according to hubpages.com. You’d definitely hear him before you saw him.

 

 

Pharrell Williams – exhibition home
Not that we’re the sort to jump to conclusions, but this is the last thing we’d expect from Pharrell Williams. His Miami penthouse is adorned with museum-like exhibits, such as this huge canvas of Brian from TV show Family Guy, and the interestingly crafted chair, seen in these pictures from flavorwire.com.

Have you got any more examples of unusual-looking celebrity homes? We’d love to hear about them.

Here at Econoloft, it’s our aim to transform your property into the home of your dreams. If you’re in need of a little extra space, you may wish to consider having a loft conversion. With over 40 years’ experience in the industry, we’re ideally qualified to complete the work for you.

Take a look at our gallery for more design inspiration, and check out our client testimonials.

For more information or to book your FREE estimate, contact Econoloft today on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you when it’s convenient.

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09.01.2014 No Comments

“We doubled our house for £36,000”

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When Claire and Mike Bradbury purchased their two-bedroom bungalow in Watford in 2009, they always intended to extend.

“It was quite a compact property with just 45 sqm of living space,” said Mike. “We had always planned to build a loft conversion and substantially increase our living space.”

The couple used Econoloft to help them design what would become an entire new floor of their home. Over the last few years, Econoloft has been carrying out more extensions than ever on bungalow house types.

Becke Livesey from Econoloft said: “Generally speaking, homeowners must carry out a full structural survey before starting any work on a bungalow loft conversion. The loft conversion has to be planned with the structural integrity of the building in mind. It goes without saying therefore, that you need to be working with experienced builders with the necessary professional affiliations and insurances in place.”

The Bradbury loft conversion is comprised of a master bedroom, a study and a bathroom and has added a further 40 sqm of accommodation – almost doubling the size of the house.

The conversion has seen the rest of the property being reconfigured too. One of the original bedrooms was taken out to make room for the new stairs, and the lounge has moved into what was that bedroom. The couple still have a spare room downstairs.

“Econoloft were here for around six weeks and I did my own wiring and plumbing,” said Mike. “To get the rooms to a liveable standard probably took around four months which is not bad considering we have nearly doubled the size of the house.

“The £36,000 loft conversion has proved a great investment which has added £60,000 to the value of the house but most importantly it has given us a fabulous living space in a great location inside the M25.”

Econoloft says it has worked with other families who have purchased a bungalow as an investment. “A true bungalow can really reap rewards for the canny investor,” said Becke. “If you have the time to extend your property, you will enjoy the benefits of both space and money as Mike and Claire have discovered.”

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27.09.2013 No Comments

K is for… king of loft conversions

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It’s that time of the week again where we focus on our A to Z guide to loft conversions. The letter ‘k’ was a difficult one so we’ve had to be a little creative today (I’m sure you will forgive us).

We’re taking a closer look at how you can be the king (or queen) of loft conversions and the secret is all in the planning. So here is what you need to consider before converting your loft.

1. Get out that measuring tape
The best way to be able to visualise and plan how you’re going to make the most of what loft space you have is to take a trip up to your loft. Don’t forget to take your measuring tape and pen and paper. If you measure the space out yourself, while looking at it, you’ll have a much better idea of what is achievable, as looking at a floor plan can be deceptive.

2. Make the most of the space available
Once you’ve got a good idea of how much space, (including headroom) there is in your loft, you can start to plan what to do with it. If your loft has areas where the headroom is limited, make the most of this space by using it for storage. Low-level furniture items will enable you to really use every inch of available space in your loft.

3. Consider lighting
An easy way to make your loft seem instantly brighter and airier is to allow as much natural light to come flooding through as possible. It may be possible to install a roof to floor window but if not, a Velux rooflight will do the trick – just don’t position a bed directly underneath it, unless you want to be woken up early.

4. Planning for the future
You may have your heart set on a lavish cinema room or games room now but think carefully about how you might wish to use the space in the future. If you’re likely to hear the patter on tiny feet within the next five years, you may wish to keep the room options as wide as possible, to avoid having to revamp the whole space further down the line.

5. Insulation matters
The final job to do before you get the experts in is to ensure that the whole room if thoroughly insulated. If you’re unsure about how to do this, we have a whole blog post dedicated to the topic – simply look back at letter ‘I’ of our A to Z.

Once all of the planning and preparations are complete, you can then call in the professionals. Here at Econoloft, we’re here to help to every step of the way.

Take a look at our gallery of previous projects for more inspiration, while our client testimonials prove just how dedicated we are to fulfilling your needs.

For more information or to book your FREE estimate, contact Econoloft today on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you when it’s convenient.

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01.07.2013 No Comments

I is for… insulation

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Regular readers of our blog will by now be familiar with our handy A to Z offering weekly tips about all things technical relating to loft conversions. We’re now on to the letter ‘I’ and nothing quite fits the bill like insulation.

It is really important to make sure that your loft is insulated properly in order to keep the room warm and minimise overall heat loss from the house, meaning that your heating bills should not dramatically increase.

So here is your guide to insulating your loft conversion.

Why bother with loft insulation?
You may be wondering if it is really necessary to insulate your loft. You’ll no doubt be aware that heat rises. That means that should you choose not to insulate your loft, you may lose 25 per cent of your heat through the roof – and that is an awful lot of heat to lose.

So if you’re hoping to keep your energy bills low, make sure you insulate your loft. Good quality loft insulation lasts for a minimum of 40 years so over time, you’ll find that it pays for itself easily.

How to choose the right loft insulation
– If you have regular joists
The best type of insulation to use in this case would be rolls of mineral wool insulation. It’s a fairly easy job that you can do yourself should you wish. Simply layer the first piece between the joists and then position the next layer in a criss-crossed fashion until the joists are completely covered. If you don’t feel confident about doing the job yourself, you can always ask a professional installer to do it.

– If you’ll be using the loft as living space
For this purpose, you’ll need to ensure that boards are put down over the joists which remove the possibility of insulating on top of the joists themselves. To make sure that you have enough loft insulation, it’s a good idea to purchase insulation board that is already fixed to the floor boarding. Alternatively, you can raise the floor level, allowing you to fit in more mineral wool.

And of course, you could always insulate the roof instead of the floor. Do this by positioning rigid insulation boards between the roof rafters, ensuring that the boards fit snugly. Use the highest performance insulation board possible in order to fully insulate your loft.

– If you have a flat roof
For a flat roof, it is preferable to insulate from above. Attach a layer of rigid insulation board over the roof’s weatherproof layer. Should you choose to insulate from underneath, you may find that it leads to condensation problems and you don’t want to risk a damp loft, particularly if you’re going to be using it as living space or for storage.

Here at Econoloft, we’re something of an expert when it comes to converting lofts. Make sure your loft is correctly insulated in order to reduce energy bills and prevent the risk of damp.

If you’re looking for some inspiration, take a look at our gallery of previous work and have a read of our extensive client testimonial portfolio for proof of why we’re the best in the business.

For more information about loft conversions or to book your FREE estimate, contact Econoloft today on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you when it’s convenient.

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18.06.2013 No Comments

3 ways to improve the outside of your home

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Regular followers of our blog will know that this month is home improvement month here at Econoloft. Whilst we usually place the focus on the interior of a property, we feel that it is necessary to take good care of the outside of your home too.

After all, first impressions count and if the exterior of your home looks tired and worn, people are likely to assume that the inside of your home is the same.

So here are three ways to improve your home’s exterior.

 

1. Paint your front door
First things first, give your existing front door a good clean and then paint away. You could choose a bright colour to get you in the mood for upcoming summer or stick to a traditional white.

We stumbled across this great blog which gives you tips for painting your front door. The author recommends considering colours that also complement the existing exterior house colours and brickwork. This bright yellow door adds a sunshine feel and really stands out against the vivid green and red shrubbery.

 

2. Plant a window box
A window box will add instant impact to the exterior of your house and will brighten it up immensely.

We think that this window box would cheer us up if we saw it from across the road – bbc.co.uk gardening guide recommends sourcing some plants that will last all year round to create a permanent display. Garden centres usually have a good choice in stock.

 

3. Clean the windows
There’s no use having a pretty painted front door and gorgeous window box display if your windows themselves are dirty and the frames are crumbling.

And of course, clean and smudge free windows allow you to look out at the beautiful view. The Telegraph ran an article about kerb appeal – make your home look great from the outside by cleaning your windows and replacing rotten window frames with new ones. You could always paint the wooden frames too if you want your house to stand out next to your neighbour’s.

So there you have it – three simple ways to instantly improve the exterior of your home.

You also need to pay attention to the inside of your home. At Econoloft we’ve got over 40 years in the loft conversion industry.

Check out examples of previous work we’ve done for our clients to see how we could transform your loft.

For more information or to book your FREE estimate, contact Econoloft today on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you when it’s convenient.

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25.04.2013 No Comments

How to make your home sellable (part two)

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In our last post we talked about small home improvements that you can make before you put your house on the market.

After all, your house may be lovely but that doesn’t necessarily make it sellable. In order to impress viewers and persuade them to part with their cash, you need to make your home in to somewhere they can visualise living.

So here’s part two of how to make your home sellable.

 

1. Pay attention to the outside of your house
It’s vital that you make a good impression on house viewers, but if the first thing they notice about your house is that the windows haven’t been washed in a while, the garden is messy and the paintwork on the door is peeling, it’s unlikely to impress them.

Give your house so-called “kerb-appeal”. Housetohome.co.uk recommends trimming the hedges, repainting the front door and hiding the rubbish. When it comes to selling a property, it’s the little details that can make the difference between a buyer offering a good price or not putting in an offer at all.

 

2. Become a domestic god(dess)
It may sound obvious but it’s really important to give your house a thorough clean before the viewers turn up. That means vacuuming the carpets, dusting every surface until it shines, and cleaning the kitchen and the bathroom until they sparkle.

This Pinterest.com user knows the importance of having a kitchen that sparkles. Imagine how you would feel walking around a house where you could see dust or sticky crumbs on the kitchen countertops – whilst it would look lived in, it probably wouldn’t make you want to buy it.

 

3. Make it look attractive
Convince the people viewing the house that it is the best looking property they have seen with a few added touches. Fill a fruit bowl with fresh fruit and make it into a table centrepiece and fill vases with bright, bold blooms to add pops of vibrant colour.

Take inspiration from channel4.com and dress your table with this attractive coloured glass tableware set. The contrasting blue and yellow tones work well to produce a sunny, welcoming mood.

Studies have shown that by converting your loft, you could add nearly a quarter to the overall value of your house, which is no small sum.

Here at Econoloft, we have 40 years of industry experience under our belts, and the many positive client testimonials prove how happy our clients are with the work we’ve done for them.

We know that everyone’s tastes differ which is why we tailor each of our designs to match your specifications.

For more information about how Econoloft can help transform your loft or to book your FREE estimate, contact us today on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you when it’s convenient.

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04.04.2013 No Comments

Add value to your home with a loft conversion

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We’ve had experience in the loft conversion industry for over 40 years, so our family business is considered by many as the authority on loft conversions.

As such, we’re fully qualified to explain to you the benefits of converting your loft.

Many people may not realise that converting a loft can actually add a great deal of value to a property.

According to an article in the Guardian, over a third of valuers (35%) said that although painting and decorating makes a home seem more appealing, it adds little or no actual value.

Experts say that a loft conversion is the best way to add value to a home, and could increase the value of a property by an average of £20,876, at a cost of about £10,000.

After loft conversions, room extensions are said to add an average value of £16,069; a sum not to be sniffed at!

And it’s not just the conversion experts who recommend converting your loft – the National Association of Estate Agents has reported that more than 40% of its members believe that creating additional living space is the best way to increase a property’s value.

If you’re rapidly running out of room for your little ones, it’s far cheaper to add space rather than incur expensive moving costs. What’s more, adding space to the loft saves having to go through the hassle and stress of packing up all of your belongings and relocating elsewhere.

Perhaps your youngsters are reaching the age where it’s just too cramped for them to share a bedroom but instead of worrying about what you’re going to do, consider how much unused space you have in your loft.

If you’re not using it to its best advantage, contact Econoloft to see how we can help you.

You could consider converting your loft in to a master bedroom for you and your partner. Let your kids fight over who gets your old room. If there’s enough space left over in the loft, you might even be able to have an en-suite. Imagine that – no more squabbling over whose turn it is to use the bathroom, and you and your partner would have some secluded, private space in which to relax.

The Independent features some impressive statistics from Nationwide, where it found that building an extension or loft conversion to create a double bedroom and en-suite bathroom could add 23 per cent to the value of an average three-bedroom house.

Choosing to improve rather than move works out cheaper in the long run, plus you’ll get the added bonus of being able to stay in the beautiful family home you’ve brought your kids up in.

And if you do decide to put your house up for sale, you’ll get a much higher price for it, thanks to the additional living space you’ve created from converting your loft.

Before you start to don your overalls however, you’ll need to be aware of the regulations regarding loft conversions.

Under the majority of circumstances, planning permission is not normally required for a loft conversion. That said, permission is required if you intend to extend or alter the roof space and if it exceeds specified limits and conditions.

Loft conversions are considered permissible without the need for planning permission as long as the following limits and conditions are met:

– Volume allowance of 40 cubic metres additional roof space for terraced houses

– Volume allowance of 50 cubic metres additional roof space for detached and semi-detached houses

– No extension to be higher than the highest part of the roof

– Materials to be similar in appearance to the existing house

– No verandas, balconies or raised platforms

– Any window opening to be 1.7m above the floor

Master bedrooms and en-suites tend to be the most popular loft conversions, but in reality, you could convert your loft any way you want. Take a look at some of our previous work for inspiration.

If you’d like more information or have any queries regarding loft conversion, pick up the phone and talk to our experts now. You can book your FREE estimate on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you when it’s convenient.

 

 

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19.02.2013 No Comments

Five ways to increase the value of your home

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The constant variation in the value of property can make it difficult to decide when the right time to move house is.

As your kids grow older, your house seems to shrink in size, and what was once a spacious three bedroom semi two years ago, now seems like a cramped cottage.

But what if we told you that you could make enough room to stay in your beloved house, and at the same time, increase the value of your home?

It sounds tempting, doesn’t it?

Here are five simple ways you could increase the value of your home today;

1. The Sky’s the Limit

Whilst most house conversions require you to build out into your garden, converting your loft is the perfect way to upsize your house without losing your beloved garden space. What’s more, it’s far cheaper to extend your house than it is to up-sticks and move.

Turn your loft in to a master bedroom and add some serious value to your house, not to mention more privacy, away from the kids. Keep the interior décor cool and stylish with monochromes, and create a haven of calm and serenity.

2. Small changes can mean Big Money

If you want to increase the value of your house, it makes little sense to spend a fortune on a total re-vamp. Making a few small changes here and there can make a world of difference to the property’s overall value.

Make a lasting first impression with a neat and tidy house exterior. Clean your windows, clear the driveway, and unblock your gutters. If necessary, give the front door a lick of paint too. Myhometalking.com knows just how impressive a house exterior can be.

 

3. Pave over an Unruly Garden

Phil Spencer, presenter of popular Channel 4 show Location Location Location is the authority when it comes to improving the value of property. He recommends paving over your garden to create parking space, invaluable in areas where parking is scarce.

According to Nationwide, installing space for off-street parking can add as much as 8% to the value of your home. Check out the work of block-paving specialist apave.

4. Mirror Mirror on the Wall

small or narrow rooms can be transformed by hanging a mirror on either side of the wall. Your room won’t look narrow and cramped any longer, and any prospective buyer will comment on how spacious it feels.

Ceiling to floor mirrors are the way forward. The reflection makes your space feel more open and distracts attention away from the size.

 

5. Showcase your Kitchen

If you only have enough money to invest in one room, make it the kitchen. This has now become the one area of the home to showcase. It’s no longer used just for cooking; nowadays we do homework there, watch television, and entertain guests. According to the Telegraph, “a new kitchen will add 4.6 per cent onto the value [of your home]”.

Housetohome.co.uk features kitchen designs like this casual island kitchen. The worktop overhangs at one end to provide a breakfast bar whilst free space below has been turned into a display shelf. Get the whole family together in one room with a modern kitchen.

At Econoloft, we know that your house is your own personal space, so we tailor our designs to match your specifications. Take a look at some of our previous projects if you want some inspiration.

Contact us today for help with adding value to your home.

To book your FREE estimate, call us on FREEPHONE 0800269765 or fill in a call back form and we will contact you at a time when it’s most convenient.

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01.02.2013 No Comments