COVID-19 Has Sparked a Renovation Revolution

One of the most cost-effective ways of enhancing a property’s value is through renovation and refurbishment projects. When it comes to home improvement projects, homeowners have a limitless range of creative options, from improving the environmental sustainability of the house, replacing old fixtures with modern furnishings, to carrying out extension projects.

UK property owners have a fondness for undertaking home improvement projects. And the COVID-19 pandemic has only increased their focus on refurbishment and renovation projects, whether for their main residences or buy-to-let properties. For instance, according to a survey conducted by NatWest, over three-in-five homeowners (62%) would think about remortgaging to carry out a home improvement project.

Given my close working relations with property investors, buy-to-let landlords and brokers, I firmly believe that the UK is on the verge of a refurbishment and renovation revolution that will uplift the standard of properties available on the market. What’s more, it will help contribute to the country’s recovery efforts after the pandemic.

Triggering Demand for Home Improvement Projects

Understandably, you might be wondering why homeowners are thinking about home improvement projects when we are in the midst of a global pandemic that doesn’t seem to have any real solution in the near future. What you might not have realised is that the increase in activity and demand for such projects is a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The UK has been observing the social distancing rules since 23rd March 2020. After lockdown measures were officially put in place, most offices and commercial workspaces were closed temporarily. This resulted in a great section of employees being forced to work remotely from home. The implementation of remote working was also an enlightening experience for some businesses.

Employers started to realise that workers could still perform their duties efficiently without the need for being physically available in the office. Business leaders have started pondering on whether they need to consider downsizing their offices in case this form of flexible working will become the norm after the pandemic.

Financing Home Improvement Projects

Marketing Financial Solutions, being a bridging lender, is working closely with homeowners carrying out refurbishments and renovations, whether it is to comply with HMO standards or to extend a property. Through discussions held by our Business Development Managers, it has become apparent that some are having a difficult time accessing the finances required to undertake such projects.

Considering the current situation, banks have become more strict with their lending criteria, which has led to delays in processing applications. This can have serious repercussions, especially in terms of meeting deadlines and reducing potential construction costs. It is due to this reason that anyone planning on undertaking a home improvement project, such as ‘Kitchen showroom Surrey‘ or a new kitchen island, in the coming months must ensure that they have the needed finance set up.

This essentially means that they should not limit themselves to the few loan products available on the high street and should also consider bespoke loans facilitated by specialist finance providers. As opposed to mainstream lenders, specialist finance providers can award loans speedily that are customised to cater to each applicant’s unique needs. In addition, the loans can be structured factoring in the project deadlines.