Outdoor improvements top priority for renovations
Outdoor improvements are the number one priority for homeowners renovating, according to fintech Selina Advance.
Bathroom renovations were also found to be a key priority for almost three million Brits – 9% of all homeowners – followed by kitchen extensions or renovations (6%).
1.3 million homeowners planned to upgrade their home’s smart technology and a further 4% planned to make their home more sustainable, for example with solar panels.
Over the past year, Selina Advance found that more than half of all homeowners (55%) had made home improvements, rising to three-quarter (75%) of those aged 18 to 34 and 69% among those living in London.
The top motivation was to add value to their home (23%), followed by creating more entertaining space (18%).
One in 10 (11%) made improvements to enable home working, rising to 16% of 35 to 54-year-olds, and 8% wanted to create space for children and growing families – rising to 14% of 18 to 34-year-olds.
Selina Advance’s new research has also found that more than a quarter of homeowners (26%) used credit to fund home improvements made in the last year. A fifth (22%) used unsecured credit such as credit cards or loans and 9% remortgaged.
This rose to to 34% among those with net assets of £250,000-plus, 28% used unsecured credit such as cards and loans and 13% remortgaged.
Similarly, among those planning renovations in the next year, 35% planned to use credit – 32% with unsecured credit such as a credit card or loan and 10% with a remortgage.
Among those with higher assets (£250,000-plus) almost four in 10 (39%) planned to use some form of credit – 13% planned to remortgage.
Hubert Fenwick, co-founder, Selina Advance, said: “The recent lockdowns have made us all think differently about our homes and it’s made many of us aspirational about how we want our homes to look, feel and operate.
“This looks set to continue as a further 15 million Brits have their sights set on upgrading their homes in the next 12 months and many of these will benefit from using a HELOC which gives greater flexibility and affordability. You only pay for what you need, when you need it.”
“A third of homeowners say they plan to borrow to fund the works to their home and we know this can be expensive.
“HELOCs offer a new way for these homeowners who have worked hard to build up equity in their property, enabling them to borrow affordably, responsibly and with flexibility that is often needed with these projects in mind.
“As a homeowner you are rewarded with low rates compared to most other forms of unsecured personal credit (bank loans or credit cards) while having greater flexibility than a remortgage may offer, and you have no early repayment charges and can borrow larger amounts of money over longer terms making the monthly payments very affordable.”