If you’ve decided your house is in dire need of sprucing up, or perhaps it’s time to get started on the extension you’ve always dreamed of, either way – financing any home improvements is going to be a subject you’ll need to consider in depth.
You might be considering some DIY projects to enhance the ambience of your property, but if you’re thinking bigger it’s likely you’ll need to utilise the help of recommended tradesmen.
Depending on the type of work you want carried out, you might have to give some thought to hiring plumbers, joiners and builders or other specialists to make sure jobs go without a hitch.
But another consideration is sure to be how you are going to finance your home improvements. There are a number of choices for you to think about in this area – perhaps you’re happy to borrow money against the value of your house, or maybe you’ve stashed some savings away specifically for updating your property.
If not, you might be considering taking out a loan to cover the cost of the works. If this is the route you plan to follow, you’ll find all kinds of loans out there, from banks and building societies to products designed to cover renovation projects from firms that specialise in lending money for such jobs, provided you have a sound credit rating.
Before you sign on the dotted line, however, it would be a wise move to get some sound financial advice first. This is especially the case if the jobs you’ve got planned are to make your house more saleable. You can find out the cost of materials by visiting DIY stockists and pricing up paints and wallpaper, for example, and to work out how much you’ll need to pay contractors it’s best to retrieve a number of quotes from different firms to get a rough estimate.
Once you’ve compiled a list of figures, take the numbers to your local estate agents to find out exactly what people looking to buy properties in your area want, and how much they are willing to pay. You’ll need to make sure the amount you’re thinking of spending on doing up your house will actually pay off when it comes to selling up and that you can afford the monthly interest payments on a loan.
If you decide you’d like to proceed with the works, you’ll have to select the best trades people for the job. A good way of finding out more about companies or individuals you’re considering employing is by reading reviews of their work online, which other customers have posted. You can also obtain quotes for work to find out which are the firms have the lowest prices, but remember that cheapest workers may not always be the most thorough. This way, you can find reliable tradesmen at the best prices.
On the other hand, you might be considering smaller jobs in your property, which you hope to complete yourself. If this is the case, you’ll still need to account for all the materials and whether you have time to devote to enhancing your property. Taking on DIY work yourself can be thoroughly rewarding, providing you do the job right. And it could save you money.
But it should be considered that doing technical jobs just to save money could be a costly mistake. If you don’t have the know-how to plumb in a bath, it could be a better move to pay a skilled worker to install it rather than watch your money go down the drain in the long term when you discover the pipes have leaked and caused water damage because you plumbed it in yourself…badly.
If you’ve found some DIY jobs you’re sure you can complete yourself, take a look online at the tutorials that can help show or tell you how to go about the project in a step by step fashion. You’ll find all kinds of useful information on subjects such as laying a wooden floor, draught-proofing exterior doors, laying carpets or putting down paving slabs, so decide what you can do safely and don’t try to overstretch your abilities.
If you’re in a hurry to complete a job you might well be tempted to have a go yourself, but this could in fact be a false economy. The old adage ‘if a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well’ should be applied at this stage to avoid any potentially costly botches and help you improve your home while getting the best value for money in the long run.