I’m a garden expert – these eight features can slash the value of your home by £1,000s


WITH the mercury rising, and much of the UK country bathed in sunshine, many people are seizing the opportunity to get out into their gardens.

As we spend more time in our outside space, lots of us will invest in new features and fixtures.

Garden expert Kendall Platt reveals the biggest no-nos for your outside space

Kendall runs garden business Adventures with Flowers

But you need to tread carefully as certain additions could end up detracting from the value of your property.

With house price growth slowing, this is something you want to avoid at all costs.

We asked gardening expert, Kendall Platt, who runs Adventures with Flowers, to tell us about some of the biggest homebuyer turnoffs.

The 37-year-old mum lives in Reading with her husband Dave, four-year old Arwen and one-year-old Elora.

She told HOAR: “You need to take care when sprucing up your garden or adding new features.

“If you get it wrong, you risk potentially knocking thousands off what you could get when you sell your home.”

Here are some of the common – and not-so-common – mistakes.

Fake grass

Artificial grass is a popular garden feature, but one which risks devaluing a property, according to Kendall.

“It is a literal barrier to nature,” she said. “Not only does it leach plastics into the soil below, but it also traps heat in the ground underneath which is not good for global warming – or for wildlife.”

She adds that while standing on real grass is an excellent way to cool off in high temperatures, the same cannot be said of fake grass.

“It gets very hot to touch,” she said. “It can result in children – and pets – getting their feet burned.”

The green-fingered whizz also warns that the cost to a new owner of pulling up an artificial lawn and reintroducing nature can be costly – even in a small garden.

She added: “You can bet the prospective buyer will be knocking that sum off the amount they’ll offer to pay you.”

Hot tubs

While fancy water features such as a hot tub can seem luxurious, the fact they are costly to maintain can be a turn-off for potential buyers.

“They are expensive to run because of the chemicals needed, and also due to the electricity required to keep the tub constantly heated, to ensure bad bacteria doesn’t start to grow,” says Kendall.

“Add to this the issue that many people don’t like the thought of bathing in other people’s dirty water, and house-hunters could be hugely put off.”

Some will also worry about outdoor water installations being dangerous for children.

Kendall adds: “Installing a permanent hot tub in your home could potentially knock thousands off the value of your property.”

With this in mind, you need to think very carefully before splashing out.

Alternatively, if you’re set on the idea, Kendall suggests getting an inflatable one, instead, so you can take it with you when you move.

On Amazon, the Lay-Z-Spa 60011 Vegas six-person person hot tub is down from £599 to £299.


Many of us love nothing more than a barbeque on a hot summer’s day.

But unless you take the time to keep your unit clean, you risk devaluing your home, according to Kendall.

“A dirty, uncared-for BBQ might signal to buyers that there are other parts of the property that have not been looked after,” she says.

“This could set the alarm bells ringing.”

If you are sure you can be disciplined about giving your BBQ the TLC it needs, Kendall suggests Weber models might be worth a look.

“These are well made and easy-to-use,” she said. “That said, they are more expensive, too.”

At B&Q you can get the Weber compact charcoal barbecue for £110.

You may be able to pick one up more cheaply if you buy second-hand, on a site such as Facebook Marketplace.

But always check the BBQ is safe before using it.

Paddling pools

Having a paddling pool in your garden could potentially add value to your home, Kendall explains, as it can show buyers how their children or grandchildren could get enjoyment from that space.

But if you fail to look after it properly, the reverse could be true.

“You need to ensure it is kept clean,” said Kendall. “You also need to move it regularly as if not, you risk ending up with bald patches of lawn at the end of the summer.

That’s not a good look for a prospective buyer.”

Garden furniture

If you’re thinking about investing in some new furniture for your garden, you need to choose carefully, according to Kendall.

While a sturdy material such as wicker or rattan can be a good choice as they won’t bend, warp or rot, even in the winter months, such sets can be pricey.

“You can get cheaper plastic, or plastic-coated furniture which looks great, and can withstand the elements,” says the garden expert.

“This is important if you have nowhere to store the furniture over the winter.

“Another advantage is that minimal upkeep is required, other than a yearly clean.”

By contrast, wooden garden furniture is much higher maintenance.

“It will require yearly sanding and treating to maintain its appearance and to stop it from getting damaged,” warns Kendall.

“If you know you won’t have the time for the necessary upkeep, then go with plastic.

“Uncared-for wooden furniture is an eyesore, and could knock money off your property price.”


While a gazebo can be a great feature as it offers shade from the sun and shelter from the rain, it’s easy to get this wrong.

“A permanent structure would likely add value to your home, especially as the new owners would get to keep it and benefit from it,” says Kendall.

“But there’s a risk a plastic or fabric gazebo could reduce your home’s value.

“If, say, the gazebo is left outside for much of the year and not cleaned properly, this could give potential buyers a ‘smoking-area-in-a-pub’ vibe, as opposed to a ‘relaxing-among-nature’ vibe.”

Shower curtains

Lots of homeowners have jumped on a new social media trend of putting a shower curtain in the garden to spruce up a tired space.

But Kendall urges caution, as this risks devaluing your home.

“With bee and insect populations in decline, the last thing we need is fake plants being hung up over our outside spaces,” she said.

“It is spending time in nature that is soothing for our frazzled souls, not sitting next to a plastic shower curtain.”

Kendall suggests a far better approach is to buy two or three pots and fill them with actual flowers.

“This will boost your wellbeing and mood, and will also show potential buyers what could be possible for them if they owned the property.

“Purchasing pots and flowers needn’t burn a big hole in your wallet.”

At Wilko, you can pick up a Yougarden hydrangea in a 3-litre pot for £26.50.

Kendall adds: “We need living things around us to feel good.

“At the same time, making people feel good when looking around your home will hopefully increase the amount they are prepared to spend on it.”


Kendall warns that one of the biggest homebuyer turnoffs is a scruffy and unkempt garden.

“Don’t fall into the trap of treating your garden like a dumping ground, as opposed to another room in your home,” she says.

“When faced with kids’ toys, broken fencing, old garden furniture and shrivelled up dead plants, most buyers will give your home a wide berth.

“And if you’re lucky enough to find they still want to buy it, despite the mess, you’re likely to find they won’t be willing to pay as much for it.”

Kendall recommends demonstrating how your garden is an extension of your living space.

“Many people wish they had more room, so ensure you’re showing house-hunters how they can utilise the area outside the back door to enhance their lives,” she says.

“Maximise the space you have by clearing up rubbish, weeding the flower beds, mowing the lawn, and planting some plants.

“The more greenery and nature you can incorporate, the better.”

Kendall says ensure you’re showing house-hunters how they can utilise the area outside the back door