Homeowners invest in gardens to prepare for better times on the mortgage market

09 September 2008 / by Daniela Gieseler
British homeowners appreciate the extra space their gardens offer and believe the green space adds an average £9,000 of value to the property if they were to sell their home, new research from Yorkshire Bank has found.

Yorkshire Bank's quarterly Homebuyers Report found that in a difficult housing market many Brits are investing in their gardens as a means to add value to their existing properties.

The findings show that the investment would be justified as those currently without a garden would fork out a third of their average annual salary for this extra benefit, even considering a higher mortgage for the purchase of a house with a garden.

90 per cent of homeowners with gardens say they use it at least once a week, while a surprisingly high percentage – 41 per cent – use it every day for different purposes – from practical to social activities. Hanging out the washing topped the list, followed by a space for socialising and as a play area for the kids.

Gary Lumby, Yorkshire Bank's head of retail, commented: "As the housing market continues to slowdown, many are looking at ways of adding value to their homes. Our research shows that gardens are highly prized and with so many willing to pay a premium for outdoor space, investing in your current garden could see the value of your house grow."

While first time buyers are happy to secure a mortgage deal and get a roof over their heads in the first place, the demand for gardens grows with age and with the time homeowners stay in their house.

Accordingly, first time buyers would only pay £4,361 extra for the benefit of the garden, while longer established homeowners would pay more than double with amount – a staggering £11,932. People in their forties would also pay £11,650 in order to own a garden, compared to £7,333 for those in their twenties.

Gary Lumby, Yorkshire Bank's head of retail, concluded: "Our research shows that Brits value their outdoor space - and are willing to put a pay for the satisfaction they get from having their very own green and pleasant land."

© Fair Investment Company Ltd