A downstairs bathroom can take thousands off the price of a home in the UK
Estate agents estimate that a downstairs family bathroom takes some £13,500 or 6% off the value of the average property in the UK.
Research has found that some 23 million people would not consider buying a property if the main bathroom was downstairs.
Londoners are most likely to be deterred by a downstairs bathroom, taking £27,000 off the value, while those in Scotland are least likely to have an issue with it, according to the study from Direct Line Home Insurance.
British people prefer an upstairs bathroom with 44% saying that a downstairs bathroom would put them off buying a property. Furthermore, downstairs bathrooms have reportedly directly contributed to the loss of millions of property sales, with 7.4 million people deciding against buying a property in the past because the bathroom was located downstairs.
The lack of desirability of downstairs bathrooms and the apparent negative impact on property prices, may also be contributing to the increase in home owners choosing to move them upstairs, with 45% of estate agents reporting there are fewer properties with downstairs bathrooms listed now compared to five years ago.
Some 25% of estate agents are advising home owners that if a property has a downstairs bathroom they should consider relocating this upstairs prior to listing. Although this would be dependent on the cost of moving a bathroom versus the potential value, it would add to a property at the point of sale.
If home owners are considering where to spend money to increase the value of their property estate agents suggest adding an extra bedroom will add more value than an extra bathroom.
No matter where it is located, the quality of a home’s bathroom is vital when trying to sell a property and attract potential buyers with 91% of estate agents reporting that bathroom quality is important to a sale with 33% saying it is very important.
‘Downstairs bathrooms are usually found in older properties accessed through the kitchen and despite them featuring in thousands of homes across the UK, they divide opinion. With some home buyers actively avoiding properties like this and others finding them much more convenient, especially if they are less mobile or have young children,’ said Dan Simson, head of home insurance at Direct Line,.
‘Home owners who are planning home renovations should let their insurer know about any changes being made to their house, as any work that involves walls being knocked down, floors being taken up, plumbing or electrical work, can result in damage to the property. Having builders and other trades coming and going with spare keys also increases the security risk,’ he pointed out.
‘Once the building work has been completed, householders should inform their insurer of any changes that have been made to their property, as adding bedrooms or bathrooms can not only add value to their home, but also change their home insurance requirements,’ he added.