Inside-out: Fine & Country Brookmans Park explain which outbuildings are most likely to help sell a property

PUBLISHED: 14:35 30 November 2015 | UPDATED: 14:35 30 November 2015

Work into the night without disturbing the rest of the household with an outside office

Work into the night without disturbing the rest of the household with an outside office


Many properties, particularly in countryside locations, come with outbuildings and annexes with various states of use. Some add a large amount of value to a property, while others can dissuade buyers from making a purchase...

A modern out-building, used for the likes of a gym or home studioA modern out-building, used for the likes of a gym or home studio

Outbuildings have many uses, from garages used for storage, to stables or large annexes. Traditionally, they have been price neutral, having little or no impact on the value of a property, but more recently the outbuilding’s functionality and condition are coming into play.

It is generally accepted that stables add value, especially if there are 15 or more. Other outbuildings such as garden sheds and barns can either add or detract from a home’s value depending on a few factors.

Home buyers will want answers to several key questions. Does the outbuilding have a well-defined use? Is it in good condition? Is it costly to maintain or repair? If an outbuilding is derelict or unused, like a large dilapidated barn, old sheds or unused farm service building, then it could lessen the value of a property as expensive repair work can be very off-putting to buyers.

A 'Pod' constructed by Contemporary Garden Rooms, ShropshireA 'Pod' constructed by Contemporary Garden Rooms, Shropshire

Converted and functional outbuildings, on the other hand, often add value. This may include outbuildings that are small and in good condition, such as storage sheds that can be used for tools or equipment or larger outbuildings, such as detached garages. Additionally, outbuildings that have been converted for home leisure use, such as a pool or cinema complex, are becoming increasingly popular status symbols and can add value to properties, especially in the upper end of the market.

Adding an outbuilding to an urban property has become fashionable as an alternative form of guest accommodation or home office. This is a reflection of the times, where more people work from home, but canny investors are also realising that outbuildings can be monetised if they are converted into rental properties.

A garden or garage office that separates work from home can be a real plus, as can outbuildings that have been converted into additional living space. A well-designed annexe can provide appealing guest accommodation, or be converted into granny flats for elderly relatives.

An outhouse constructed by Contemporary Garden RoomsAn outhouse constructed by Contemporary Garden Rooms

Before you set to work turning that tumble-down shed into a plus home cinema complex, do your homework. Compare your property to others in the area and give careful consideration to the cost of conversion and the likely payback. Don’t forget to speak with your local planning office before you proceed so that you know exactly what is required.

Photos courtesy of Contemporary Garden Rooms who can be reached by visiting or on 01952 825630 |

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