A home renovation project is one of those rare opportunities where you get to spend money to make money. In other words: the updates you make on your house today, will only increase the value of your property in the future. Plus, in the meantime, you get to enjoy a better living space without the hassle or cost of purchasing a new home.
Ready to get started on a home remodeling project? We’ve got 5 big tips that will help you save money and spend smartly on any home renovations.
#1: Set a Budget
Don’t just dive into a home remodel and hope for the best! Kick off the project with a plan that encompasses all wants and needs for the renovations and an initial set of parameters on cost. How much are you hoping to spend? What’s your upper limit? Think about not only what’s possible for costs in the short-term, but also what value you want from your home in the long run. Once you’ve got a sense of the key numbers from your end, then it’s time to head to the professionals for a total cost estimate. It’s always a good idea to approach multiple contractors at this point and carefully evaluate the budget for each; while keeping in mind that the cheapest quote isn’t always the value for money. Finally, be sure to budget additional funds – at least 10% of the final quotation – for unexpected costs.
#2: Save Small
During a home remodeling project, small savings can make a big difference to your final cost. Ask your contractor if it’s possible to lower costs by adding some of your own manual labor, for example during the demolition stage or with daily cleanup time. Another great tip is to check the dimension of available materials before you start designing a room, to reduce spending on excess plywood, tiles and so on. Finally, check out a recycling center or Habitat for Humanity center for fixtures like door knobs and cabinet handles. Used fixtures cost less than new ones, and you might just find something totally unique for your home. When your own project is finished, consider donating any leftover materials or old fixtures: it’s better for the environment and will save you money because when tax season rolls around, donations to a registered charity can be claimed as tax credit.
#3: Think Function First
Interior styles will change, but having smart functional elements throughout your home will always increase its value. Think about adding extra storage, more windows for natural light, and any structural or plumbing updates that will make day-to-day life a little smoother. And speaking of function and plumbing: keep in mind that plumbing changes will almost certainly bump up your remodel budget, so wherever possible, aim to keep sinks and toilets where they are unless your pipes are specifically in need of a renovation.
#4: Take Advantage of Financing Options
Homeowners have a range of solid financing options to help cover the cost of home remodeling. A home equity loan or line of credit usually offers a much lower interest rate than what you’d pay when financing with a credit card or personal loan. What’s more, the interest on home equity credit is often tax deductible. There are even special financing offers on energy efficient home renovations. HUECU, for example, offers the MySolar program in partnership with NRGTree, to help homeowners access a free estimate on solar panel installation and compare home equity and personal loan financing options.
#5: Be Energy Efficient
Beyond solar panels alone, being energy efficient will lower your utility bills and increase the resale value of your home. Not sure how to make your house more energy efficient? Mass Save offers a free Home Energy Assessment to check out your home’s current use of energy and provide a custom list of recommendations on energy-saving changes. After the assessment is complete, you may be able to take advantage of a 0% APR loan through HUECU to assist with the installation of energy efficient home improvement. Visit https://huecu.org/other-loans/mass-save-heat-loan/ for more details. Qualifying improvements include high-efficiency heating systems, insulation to reduce cooling and heating costs, Energy Star windows and more!