Recent research shows that just one in five Brits (22%) lives in their dream home, and higher value ownership doesn’t always bring home happiness - almost two thirds (62%) of those who live in homes worth more than £500,000 say their current house isn’t their dream home.

Yet this hasn’t dampened our obsession with home improvements – anyone reaching for DIY tools this bank holiday won’t be alone with a fifth (22%) of homeowners having spent at least £11,000 on domestic improvements in the last two years. In fact, almost two thirds (63%) of homeowners have done up their dwellings over this period with homeowners most likely to spend between £2,000 and £5,000.

And we are not just making cosmetic changes. The study, which includes a review of local authority data, shows that planning applications have risen by 27% over the last five years. There are, however, signs that enthusiasm might be cooling: the last 12 months (June 2016-May 2017) have seen a year-on-year increase in planning applications of less than 2%, a significant slowing from the 6% growth seen over the same period a year earlier.

The data also shows how Britain’s ‘dream home’ is changing. While single storey extensions (up 49% since 2012) and loft conversions (up 43%) remain most popular, basements have seen the most dramatic growth in applications, a rise of 183% since 2012, with London boroughs representing the top 16 local authorities. Meanwhile, conservatories and porches are less favoured in terms of new applications, but remain popular as an existing feature.

The place of the kitchen has changed dramatically also. In this study it takes the top spot on Britain’s ‘dream home’ wish-list, yet in historical terms the kitchen is a relatively modern invention. Where once you’d be lucky to have running water, today it is the ultimate status symbol and where we do most of our entertaining.

Remember, if you have spent money on energy saving efficiency in your home for sustainable living and have upgraded the house and garden, it will appeal to many more buyers. You may benefit from our Free service on marketing and value to achieve the best result.

If you are looking for your dream home or selling a home that might be someone else’s dream, please call us on 01993 779020 for a Free Valuation and Expert Advice. Research by Halifax Insurance with additional information from MRC.