The number of planning applications submitted for home improvements has jumped by 26% across Britain, research from Halifax Insurance shows.
The figures, which cover the years between 2012 and 2016 and are sourced from local authority data, indicates more people may be choosing to spruce up their existing property rather than move.
Homemovers face continuing price rises while at the higher end of the market a sharp hike in stamp duty has sharply increased the cost of transactions – largely affecting London which has seen the biggest rise in home improvement applications.
There was an increase of 60% between January 2012 and December 2016 in the capital – followed by the East Midlands at 28% and the South East at 24%
Applications for basement and loft conversions have been particularly popular, with loft applications up 183% in London alone over the five year period, while conservatories and porch extensions appear to have fallen out of favour.
Halifax Insurance also surveyed 2,000 homeowners and found specific regions of Britain show preferences for particular home projects.
London residents lean towards applications for tennis courts or a home gym, while people in Wales want a games room and those in the South West are keen on building their own swimming pools.
The trend towards home improvements comes as the Government’s House Price Index showed a 4.9% annual increase in property value in the year to June, with the average UK home now costing £223,257.
Separate research from Lloyds Bank recently found that in the first half of 2017, the number of homemovers was down by 2% compared with the same period a year earlier.
The typical price paid by home movers for a property has surged by 41%, from £206,122 in 2012 to £290,991 by June 2017 – an increase of £84,869, Lloyds found.