5 things you can’t change about a property (at least not easily!)

When looking for a home there is probably going to be a lot of things on your wish list. Maybe you want a certain number of bedrooms, a chef’s kitchen or a big backyard? Whatever it is you’re after there’s a good chance you will have to compromise on what you want in some way or another.

It can be hard deciding what property features are and aren’t important, but you should always be mindful that some things can be easily changed, such as wall colours or landscaping, while other things such as location can’t.

What can’t be changed?

  1. Backyard size – You won’t be able to increase your backyard size unless there is a lot of trees, garden beds, or perhaps an old shed you can dig up, or you have the ability to buy your neighbour’s property too. If you’re rebuilding you might be able to design the house on the block to maximise backyard space, but in general a small backyard is going to stay that size.
  1. Council zoning – Every council has rules set in place about what can and can’t be done to each property. It’s always a good idea to check what council zoning rules apply to a property you intend to buy as it may restrict what kind of changes you can make to it.
  1. Noise – It’s always a good idea to visit a property at different times of the day to check what the noise levels are like. Heavily trafficked streets are likely to be noisy, however they may only be noisy during peak times. You can dampen out outside noises with clever property design, however it may be hard to get rid of street noises altogether.
  1. Neighbourhood – Property is always about ‘location, location, location’ so you absolutely want to make sure that where a property is located is right for you before making a purchase. Consider things like nearby schools, amenities and transport before making a property purchase to help ensure you’ll be happy with where you live for years to come.
  1. Orientation – If you’re looking for a light filled north-facing block then you’re going to need to find one. Where the sun hits a property at different times of day can dictate how liveable it is and while you can use clever housing design to help draw in more light (or block it out), it won’t always be an optimal solution.

A few things that are hard to change…

There are a number of other things such as room size or number of bathrooms that are hard to change, however not impossible if you’re willing to renovate, extend or rebuild. These things can be quite expensive though so keep that in mind.

When home hunting try not to get too caught up in the things that are simply cosmetic and require modest fixes such as a new coat of paint or new bathroom or kitchen fittings.

When a property is styled well these things may charm you but it’s more important to pay attention to the things that you can’t change to ensure that you make a smart property choice for now and into the future.

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