Home improvement boom

With the housing slump in full swing, more and more home owners are opting to improve their properties rather than sell up, leading to a likely surge in interest in conservatories.

Recent research has shown that almost £4 billion has been spent over the last 18 months by people deciding to improve rather than move.

The survey, by Liverpool Victoria, showed that more than half of those carrying out improvement work brought in professionals to do the job properly.

There is also a trend emerging where homeowners are opting to become landlords rather than sell their homes with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) noting that 43 per cent of its surveyors had noticed more instructions to let in the last quarter.

Architect Your Home head of marketing Nina Longstaff explained this is leading to a rise in home improvements.

"Increased competition has had a positive effect on the interior design market, especially at the top end of the market," she said.

"Landlords at this end of the market have to work harder to attract the best tenants and interior design is a key element in achieving that."