Sellers spend 20% more on DIY

This figure is up 20% from three months ago (£1,683) according to the latest findings from Alliance & Leicester's movingimproving index.

Whilst the spotlight is firmly on house prices and the reported escalating cost of buying, the expenses involved in selling a property may be overlooked or neglected. With the average cost of selling a £100,000 house estimated to be around £4,000, a further £2,000 spent on home improvements to get the property to a saleable standard represents a large extra cost to those selling their homes.

A&L's quarterly movingimproving index asked a GB representative sample of 4,000 people how much they intend to spend on DIY over the next three months and which projects they are intending to carry out. The key findings were as follows:

• Britons intend to spend an average of £1,239 sprucing their houses up in the months leading up to Christmas. This figure has increased by 11% since July 2002 as Britons settle in for a winter of painting and decorating.

• Britons intending to sell their homes within the next year will be spending an average of £2,016 over the next three months. This group is more likely than the average Briton to be installing a new kitchen (12% v 8%) or a new bathroom (9% v 7%) over the same period.

• People in their 30s are intending to spend the most on DIY over the coming three months (£1,522). This contrasts with those in their 60s who only intend to spend an average of £741.

Paul Cooper, head of mortgages at Alliance & Leicester, said: "It is encouraging to see that intended DIY spend has recovered from the dip witnessed over the summer months. People are planning to spend record amounts on DIY and this suggests that they believe they will get their money back in the sale of the property.”