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What are the UK’s top home improvements?

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Written by: Christina Hoghton
26/02/2016
Some home improvements are hot, while others are not. We look at the most popular projects.

Kitchens and bathrooms top the list of the UK’s top home improvements, according to a new survey by Gocompare.com.

But those making changes to their home could be making a big mistake by failing to inform their home insurer about the changes.

And homeowners making improvements are being warned that major works could invalidate their home insurance.

Kitchen confidential

In the last five years, a third of homeowners have undertaken a home improvement or extension. New kitchens, bathrooms and installing energy efficient measures including fitting a new boiler, central heating system or double glazing top the list of work carried out.

A massive 48% fitted a new kitchen, 45% installed a new bathroom, and 40% fitted a new boiler.

But, worryingly, the research found that 52% of homeowners who had undertaken major works had kept it a secret, by failing to inform their home insurance provider of the changes they have made – potentially invalidating their home insurance.

Gocompare.com spokesperson, Ben Wilson, explained: “Updating key rooms such as a kitchen or bathroom or extending your home not only makes your home a more appealing place to live, but can increase the value of your property and possessions. For example, when installing new kitchen units many homeowners also buy new electrical appliances, furniture and other accessories – increasing both the value of their home’s rebuilding costs and household contents.

“If you’re thinking about a major renovation project, you should review your home buildings and contents insurance to make sure that you have adequate cover – both during and after the work has been completed. Before starting the project, discuss your plans with your insurer to make sure they won’t invalidate your cover.

“For example, if building work involves erecting scaffolding or removing external doors or windows for any length of time, your property will be less secure. So, to reflect the increased theft risk, your insurer may increase your household insurance premiums while the work is carried out. After completion, you may need to increase your sum insured to reflect any increase in the value of your possessions and the rebuilding costs of your property.”

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