Home improvement is a broad term that includes remodeling, renovation, or maintenance of a house. The latest statistics show that the average homeowner spent $10,636 on home improvement projects in the past two years, a dramatic jump from the previous decade.
Some improvements may have a negative effect on your resale value. For example, adding marble flooring to your bathroom may be a nice touch, but potential buyers won’t pay for it. Instead, look for a more practical solution, such as retouching worn areas or cleaning the siding.
However, while a new front door can be an affordable way to improve the appearance of your house, it won’t add much value. This is especially true if the project includes an upgrade to the electrical or plumbing systems.
In order to make the most of your investment in a new kitchen or a new front door, you should first create a detailed list of the changes you want made. Make sure that you hire a reputable contractor, and a good insurance policy will go a long way to protect you and your family.
Obtaining a home improvement loan can be a great way to finance repairs. These types of loans come in many forms, from unsecured to secured. Depending on the type of work you need done, you may be able to borrow up to 85% of the home’s value. While these loans have higher interest rates than personal loans, they can be an affordable alternative to credit cards. They are often repaid over a five to thirty year period. If your credit score is in the normal range, you may qualify for a more attractive FHA loan.
Having a home improvement contract can be a bit daunting. A good one will describe your proposed scope of work, including a schedule for inspections and filing of construction documents. It should also indicate who will be responsible for paying for any inspection fees. Also, check your local building codes office to see if there are any laws or regulations requiring permits for the project.
As with any major purchase, it’s always a good idea to research the contractor you’re considering. Verify that they are licensed, and ask for references to determine the quality of their work.
You should also consider a home equity loan, which is similar to a second mortgage. While it is less expensive than a personal loan, it is a more time-consuming process. Alternatively, you can use a credit card for the purchase, which often has an introductory 0% APR period.
Another trick is to do your home improvement project over a period of time. A loan that is backed by a mortgage usually has a longer repayment period. By securing the financing with a home equity line of credit, you can pay for the improvements over several years.
There are also credit cards that offer an introductory 0% APR for 12 months. While these are a great option for small home improvements, you should still be wary of high-interest rates.