Property investment tip 16: 7 ways to make a corner block / end-of-terrace property a more profitable investment

Tips on buying a corner block or end-of-terrace house

In some countries, properties on the end of a block are called the ‘end-of-terrace’, whilst others refer to them as the ‘corner block’. Regardless, I think they make a great investment. My fourth investment is an end-of-terrace apartment in East London.

In highly populated areas, buildings are often attached to one another. The benefit of a corner block is that it’s semi-detached; this means one side of the property is not attached to another property. And the land in a corner block is often larger.

How to increase the value of an end-of-terrace property

With planning permission from the local council, there are many alterations you can make to an end-of-terrace property to significantly increase its market value. Let me explain seven profitable options:

  1. Convert the existing end-of-terrace house into a duplex or a triplex to increase your rental income and capital gains. If the existing house has two levels, don’t demolish it to rebuild; simply reconfigure the internal layout so there is a kitchen, bathroom, living room and bedroom(s) on each floor. The staircase can be moved or re-built so the second-floor apartment has a separate entrance from the street. Depending on the property demand in your area, two separate apartments can often be sold for more than one house.
  2. If the current property is a duplex, add another floor to convert it into a triplex. If the planning permission for this conversion gets declined, then add a loft or an attic so the second-floor apartment gains an extra room.
  3. With council approval, you could build a detached, self-contained granny flat in the backyard, which has a separate entrance from the street. This will increase your rental income.
  4. If you convert the property into a duplex or a triplex, you could sub-divide the garden between the apartments, or give one apartment full access to the garden. Regardless, apartments with backyards can command higher rents, particularly in dense urban areas.
  5. Build a detached garage in the backyard. However, you’ll need permission from the council to lower the street kerb so that a vehicle can drive directly into the garage.  The garage can also be rented to a third-party if the tenant does not have a vehicle, or it can be converted to a home office.
  6. Add a separate side entrance to the backyard. Owners of smaller vehicles such as motorcycles, mopeds, scooters or expensive bicycles may pay more for direct backyard parking access.
  7. A non-conventional way of adding value to an end-of-terrace property is commissioning a well-known artist to paint a mural of community significance on the entire detached wall. The mural could become part of the town’s cultural  identity the years to come.

Corners blocks have advantages and disadvantages

As much as I love the end-of-terrace building, there are still some not-so-great factors you should be aware of. As the detached wall is always exposed to the weather, damp can occur if the wall cavity is not insulated correctly. Always get a building inspection report before you make the purchase.

Also, in high crime areas, you need to make sure the access to your backyard is always secure. We’ve installed motion sensor lights and will be building a very high metal fence to deter potential thieves from entering our end-of-terrace investment property.

Regardless, I think the advantages of investing in a corner block outweighs the disadvantages. So, have you got additional tips on how to make money from a corner block?

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Hi, my name is Jude Little, also known as ‘Big Sister Jude’. I am a comic artist and a property investor. I bought my first property at 26 and ended up owning four properties in Australia and the UK by 30. I created this blog to help millions of people, like my little brother and little sister, who want to climb the property ladder but lack the knowledge and confidence on how to get there.

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