It’s the time of year when you’re probably considering sprucing up your home before the summer is upon us. The best time to consider remodeling a kitchen, for example, is in the summer when you are more likely to be cooking outdoors. This leaves the predicament of how to go about financing your home improvement project; kitchen remodeling can be very costly, so making the most of your dollar is important.
Scoping out the project
Depending on how intensive your project is going to be, you could be looking at a substantial investment. For example, if you’re considering replacing your cabinets, but that’s all you plan to do, you could set a target amount, price out cabinets, and start saving money today for a late spring project. However, if you are considering a complete overall, it takes a bit more financial planning.
Estimating your costs
If you’re a do-it-yourself type of person, you may be able to handle most of the kitchen remodeling on your own. The first thing to do is determine the costs, so you know what type of financial burden you are going to be facing. The good news is that this time of year is when the costs of materials often come down because of increased demand, and you may also be waiting for a tax refund. In many cases, you can fund your project by combining your income tax refund and by using some smart savings techniques before you get started on your project.
Once you know approximately how much your costs are, consider how long it will be before you can save money for this project. Don’t forget to add in any amounts of money you will be getting as state and federal income tax refunds as this money will be well-spent remodeling your kitchen.
What happens when you know you can’t save the money and your tax refund won’t handle the expenses involved? This may be the time to consider other financing methods, particularly if your kitchen has not kept up with the times, and you need to replace everything, including the appliances.
Funding your kitchen remodeling with home equity
If you’ve determined you have insufficient time to start saving or your tax refund combined with saving is going to help you with your kitchen remodeling project, you have a couple of options. You can use your credit cards to purchase materials, or you can apply for a home equity loan. In nearly all cases, a home equity loan will be a better option; the interest rates on these loans is usually lower than what you would pay for interest rates on your credit cards.
In many cases, a local bank where you have an established relationship will be willing to work with you to help obtain a home equity loan. Oftentimes, these loans are lines of credit, which means you are paying only for the money you use as you withdraw funds. The good news is that as you pay the loan back, you gain the benefit of having access to the funds you repay. This can be very helpful, particularly if you decide to do other remodeling projects later on in the year.
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