The UK housing market has received a boost in the last year as the lockdown led to British house hunters seeking new properties with bigger gardens and more outdoor spaces. The furlough program combined with the stay at home message has meant that many people's disposable income has greatly increased, enabling them to both improve their existing garden designs and for some people to look towards new homes.

Research by a landscaping materials provider has revealed that having a garden, outdoor space, or even a small patio can add up to 25 per cent on the average rent price, but this can vary depending on where in the country you are. According to the data from Paving Direct, the most expensive gardens in the UK are in Bath, adding a massive 43 per cent to the average rent price. The company’s research also found that areas where a garden is less likely to impact on the rental yield include Kingston Upon Hull, Sheffield, and Leicester ranked bottom of the table.

Cass Heaphy, Digital Director at Paving Direct, comments: “Homes in the centre of cities like Bath and Birmingham do not always have a garden, which can drastically increase the price of houses which do benefit from a green space. With the impact of lockdown, we’ve seen demand for paving jump. People have been spending an increasing amount of time in their own homes and want to make the most of their outdoor space.” She added that property investors need to be more aware of the opportunity cost of upgrading gardens at their properties, as it can add measurable value and reap a higher revenue. While the data shows gardens add value to homes across the country, the research showed less than a 1 per cent price difference between houses with and without gardens in both Sheffield and Hull. Both these cities have substantial universities which could be a major variable in this statistic.

Five Quick Tips for Improving Rental Yield

1. Get The Basics Right - the first step to a better yield is to get the simple things done like a full carpet clean or making sure all appliances are in full working order.

2. Kitchen & Bathroom - there's nothing quite like a dirty kitchen or bathroom to lower a rental opportunity. Take time to get these two rooms immaculate and definitely consider investing to refresh older rooms.

3. Keep It Simple - while it can be tempting for some to choose bold colours, keep a level head and choose subtle neutral colours to appeal to as many people as possible.

4. Outdoor Spaces - with more and more staying at home outdoor spaces will only increase in their desirability. Increase your yield by making sure your rental gardens are clean, tidy and inviting for renters. Properties with nice outdoor spaces significantly increase the living space for tenants. Low value rentals should look towards a simple weed-free patio and well kept lawn for maximum viewing pleasure. Properties with front gardens and driveways have great opportunities to lift first impressions with simple ideas like brick paving.

5. Special Upgrades - if your rental property is in a busy marketplace try standing out from the crowd by adding something special to the home like a walk-in shower or luxury kitchen. In a property at the lower end of the market it could be worth investing in new blinds or adding curtains to increase the homeliness for viewings.

Due to the Covid19 outbreak a huge number of people will now continue to work at home, further increasing the demand for improved rental properties. Aldermore Bank’s city tracker uses a combination of five factors to rank the UK’s best areas for buy-to-let and found that Manchester, Cambridge and London were the top three cities in the UK for buy to let properties. There are a number of northern cities in the list but the south east is the best overall region to consider for those looking to increase their portfolios.

If you’re looking to improve your garden and wanting modern garden paving solutions, visit our shop today.

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