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Posted by John King
Homeowners who may have moved house were it not for the slow property market are instead choosing to improve the spaces in which they live, a new poll has shown.
Nationwide Building Society carried out a survey and found that 47 per cent of Britons are planning to make home improvements within the next year, while only eight per cent will be moving.
Out of the improvers, 72 per cent want to modernise their decor and nine per cent intend to make more space, perhaps by adding an extension or conservatory.
Some respondents revealed they would be spending £10,000 on the projects.
However, while it may be nice to give rooms a makeover and enjoy a different look, it may be more beneficial in the long run to think about home improvements that will save money on fuel bills.
For example, new radiators will not be the most obvious thing in a room, but they are likely to be considerably more efficient and so will save money on home heating oil or gas.
They could also pay for themselves if Britain continues to get bad weather into the summer months as it has this year - indeed, there has been a rise in energy use by domestic customers in 2012 as people switched their heating on last month.
Similarly, spending money on a boiler service rather than something unnecessary will help it to run more efficiently and is likely to save significant sums of cash over the course of a year.
A study carried out by ICM recently found almost a third of households fail to do this once a year, Heating and Ventilation reports.
Furthermore, 88 per cent do not have energy-saving radiator panels and 36 per cent cannot control their central heating properly because they do not have thermostatic radiator valves.
Making a few small improvements could mean the difference between manageable energy bills and those that leave households struggling this year.
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