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Has lockdown inspired you to plot some home improvements?

People surveyed also said they wanted to make changes now in the event of a future lockdown
Picture iStock/PA 

According to a new survey, thousands of us are planning to spruce up our homes by the end of the year. Vicky Shaw, PA, finds out more.

Many homes across the UK could have a makeover by the end of the year – as nearly half (44 per cent) of households are planning to get stuck into DIY projects, according to a survey by Zopa, a new digital bank.

Those sprucing up their property estimate they will spend £2,174 typically, which is more than double the average spend in the first half of the year at £995, the survey found.

The lockdown has been a major catalyst for people’s desire to make a change.

A quarter (24 per cent) of households say they are bored with their surroundings, and a fifth (20 per cent) feel their garden has become more important, according to the survey of more than 2,000 people across the UK.

The uncertain times play a part too, with more than one in 10 (13 per cent) saying they want to make changes in case there is another major lockdown yet to come.

Overhauls will be made both outside and in. The most common improvements planned are gardening, repainting walls, and updating soft furnishings.

Home entertainment is also a priority, with 12 per cent planning to entertain in their gardens more. Some people have even built bars in their homes or gardens during lockdown, spending £1,500 on average.

Meanwhile, 12 per cent of people plan to work from home more in future, so want to improve their working conditions.

The top additions for making home workspaces more pleasant are new plants, new seating, a new desk and better broadband, according to the survey carried out in July.

Clare Gambardella, Zopa’s chief customer officer, says: “Throughout the last few months, many of us have spent an increased amount of time in our homes and have subsequently made home improvement plans.

“Although lockdown is easing, many believe it will have an impact on our socialising and working habits for some time to come, so it’s no surprise that people plan to improve their homes,” Gambardella adds.

The change in household spending habits is helping to fund some home improvements.

While the majority of improvements will be covered by general savings (58 per cent), over a quarter (27 per cent) of those sprucing up their homes are using money saved from having fewer outgoings during lockdown.

Nearly a fifth (18 per cent) have reallocated savings, which were originally meant for holidays, weddings and birthdays, towards home projects.

These are the most common home improvements planned by the end of the year, according to Zopa…

  1. Gardening
  2. Repainting walls
  3. Updating soft furnishings
  4. Enhancing outside areas
  5. New furniture

Also among the top 10 home improvements planned were increasing and organising storage space, new flooring, replacing appliances, upgrading home workspaces and bathroom renovations.

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