Home improvement projects are often very expensive, so unless you have unlimited funds to play with it is essential that you budget wisely. Of course, you may not have any money whatsoever, in which case you have an even tougher challenge on your hands. But don’t worry, even if you are really short of cash, it is possible to transform your home with a few simple home improvement projects, and here’s how to budget for them.
Choose Your Project Wisely
Some renovation projects cost more than others. Kitchens, bathrooms, conservatories and extensions are all costly projects and if you don’t have much money, you may wish to avoid planning any of these. However, even if you are not flush with cash, you can undertake the more expensive projects if you borrow the money.
Secured loans are suitable for homeowners with equity in their properties and unsecured loans are ideal for less expensive projects.
Work Out the Relative Costs Involved
Before you get stuck into paint catalogues and DIY stores you need to work out the costs of the project. This will give you a good idea of how much you are going to be spending – or borrowing if you need to finance the project with a loan. Check out prices for items online and ring around a few tradesmen for quotes if you can’t do the work yourself.
Cut Back and Save
There are lots of ways to cut corners without compromising too much on quality. The most cost-effective way to save money on home improvement projects is for you to do as much of the labour as possible. This might not be practical if you don’t have the skills, but many jobs are easy enough to learn if you have the time and patience.
The best way to finance a home improvement project is to save up and pay cash for everything. Unfortunately, this might not be possible if you have big plans and you want to see results sooner rather than later. So what are your options?
- Credit cards can be used to pay for smaller projects, but be aware that you will end up paying a lot of interest if you can only afford to make the minimum repayments every month.
- Unsecured personal loans are useful for medium-sized projects.
- Store credit is an option if you are buying a new kitchen, bathroom or conservatory.
- Taking out a secured loan or re-mortgaging is best for larger projects such as home extensions – check out Secured Loan Calculator to see how much you may get
Stick to Your Budget
Whatever your budget, make sure you stick to it like glue. It is always tempting to spend a bit more and upgrade to the next finish, but if you spend a little bit extra on everything, the overall cost of the project will rise enormously. And if you are borrowing the money to pay for your home improvement project, it could cost you dearly.