Home improvement is the process of making changes and repairs to your home, often for personal preferences or comfort. These can include adding new rooms, upgrading the interior and exterior of a property or improving safety and energy efficiency.
The home improvement industry has grown in popularity in recent years. It is one of the largest sectors of the construction industry and is estimated to be worth over $500 billion in the United States alone. It includes the sale of building materials and appliances, the services of contractors, tradespeople and other workers.
There are many reasons that people do home improvements, including to make their homes more attractive to potential buyers or to increase the value of their properties. However, the most important reason is to make the place they call home a more enjoyable and comfortable place to live.
Whether you’re planning to renovate or repair your home, the first step is to determine your budget. This will help you decide which home improvement projects you can complete yourself or hire a contractor to do.
In addition to determining your budget, you should also plan for any unexpected expenses that may arise during the course of the project. This will help you stay on track and avoid falling behind on your home improvements.
Another thing to consider is your financing options. A home equity loan is a common choice for homeowners who want to borrow against the equity in their homes. These loans have fixed monthly payments and are repaid over 5-30 year terms, depending on your mortgage length. They can be a good option if you’re working within a tight budget or are planning to use the money for home improvements, college expenses or long-term medical care.
If you have a high credit score, you may be able to qualify for a home equity line of credit (HELOC), which works like a second mortgage and can be used to finance home improvements. HELOCs typically have lower interest rates than a conventional home equity loan but may not be a good choice for those with poor credit.
When deciding on your home improvement financing, it’s important to look at your financial information closely and consider the length of time you want to repay the loan. If you’re going to be paying off the loan over a few months, it may be better to use a credit card with an introductory 0% APR period.
Alternatively, you could choose to take out a personal loan for your home improvement projects. These are a little more expensive than a home equity loan but can be a good alternative for people with excellent credit who want to finance their renovations on a fixed term basis.
The next step is to find a lender that offers home improvement loans. These loans usually require a minimum credit score of at least 700 and offer competitive interest rates.
The NerdWallet survey of 1,311 homeowners who plan to do home improvement work in the next two years found that millennials are more likely to intend to use their credit cards for these projects. The survey also found that millennials are more likely to say that they want to do a DIY home improvement project than other generations.