5 Ways To Afford Home Improvements That Aren’t An FHA Loan

Home improvements are great to add value to your property, but they can be a pain to finance. In fact, most homeowners tend to focus on personal loans or an FHA 203k loan – they can be used for refinancing and repairs instead of buying a new home – when they look for financing options. But, believe it or not, there is more than one way to finance your home improvement project without taking a personal loan. Below, you’ll find 5 ways that should do the trick for you.

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Build an eco house

#1. Let the home raise money for the improvement

If you already have a first mortgage on your home, homeequitylineof.credit can be a valuable option for you. You can draw out money as it fits and choose to pay it back when you can, as long as you keep the minimum monthly payment. You don’t even have to pay interest either until you use the money. But beware, though: If you can’t make the payment, you could end up homeless.

#2. Go green and get funded

If you decide to go green and add eco-friendly transformations to your home, you might not even have to pay for it by yourself. According to archive.epa.gov you can find funding opportunities for green buildings, including grants and tax-credits. There is a variety of national and local programs available. For an updated list, you may want to get in touch with your local authorities.

#3. Find a construction loan

Construction loans are rare and they are difficult to obtain. But this short-term loan option allows you to pay for the construction or extension work. You will need to need to make major renovations to be eligible for this kind of loan. At the end of the construction process, you will need to get the end loan, which is a loan to pay off the first loan. However, construction loans are very cumbersome in terms of application and funding, as the money is only released at specific stages of the project. Finally, if the work can’t be completed within the agreed scheduled, you might have to pay additional costs until you can move in.

#4. Borrow your 401(k)

It’s common for 401(k) programs to let you borrow from your account and pay back the loan over a number of years – generally five – via payroll deduction. However, you can only borrow up to 50% of your account balance, which limits the amount you can get. Additionally, if you leave your job or change company, you will need to repay the loan earlier. In that case, the loan becomes a withdrawal on which you owe taxes and penalties.

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#5 Reverse mortgage for 62+

If you are 62 or older, you can get a reverse mortgage on the percentage of equity that you own in your property. While a reverse mortgage is expensive, you don’t have to repay it until the home is sold or you’ve changed address.

Each way of funding your home improvements presents specific advantages and disadvantages. Unfortunately, unless you inherit a bunch load of money from a rich aunt, you will need to pick the most suitable borrowing option for your situation.

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Save Money And Make Your Next Renovation Eco-Friendly

When it comes to protecting the environment, the benefits are a long way in the future, and the costs are immediate. That’s why, according to interior designer and TV personality George Clark, people aren’t going to change the way they live – at least not without some benefits in the here and now.

Rather than taking an ideological view on the climate, Clark is more pragmatic. He says that if people are going to change, they need some incentives other than another Al Gore presentation about the end of the world.

Fortunately, things have moved on quite a bit since the early days of eco-friendly design. It’s no longer such a compromise to renovate a house in an eco-friendly way. In fact, in some situations, it’s incredibly high tech.

For regular homeowners, this means both getting some benefits and saving money on gas and electricity bills. Living more sustainably and reducing utility costs go hand-in-hand, and it’s something that everybody can benefit from.

Governments have realised this too. In the UK, for instance, the government wants to fit solar panels to 800,000 “social houses” to reduce utility costs for low-income residents. When you compare gas and electricity prices before and after the change, there’s a large difference. And that’s the benefit of eco-living: it helps level the playing field. No longer do you need a substantial income to run a big house, just the right approach to energy usage.

Here are some renovations that are eco-friendly and could save you money in the long term.

Build Draught Excluders Into New Doors

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If you’re planning on fitting new doors, you might be able to save a bit of money on your gas and electric at the same time. Rather than fitting draught excluders, which can look cumbersome and get dirty really easily, find ways to use the door itself to plug gaps between one room and another, especially exterior doors. The good news is that the majority of modern exterior doors come with draught-excluding seals which work much better than regular excluders. Find a door that fits the door frame perfectly and put an end to inch-thick gaps under your doors which let in all the cold air from outside.

Buy Furniture And Fittings Second-Hand

Most people think that the biggest energy cost involved in the delivery of goods comes at the shipping stage. But, in reality, it’s actually the manufacturing stage which involves the most energy use, especially for products which contain metal. As a result, even if you buy furniture locally, you may not be reducing the carbon footprint of your renovation.

It’s always better, therefore, to make use of old furniture: furniture that would otherwise have been thrown in a skip and dumped in a landfill. What’s more, second-hand furniture offers opportunities that new furniture doesn’t. Upcycling a piece of new furniture doesn’t make much sense. But taking something that is apparently past its best and making it new again can be a gratifying experience and something that’s well worth doing at least one.

Choose Low Electricity Appliances

When renovating a room, we rarely consider the type of appliances we choose. But it turns out that not only is the choice of appliances essential for eco-living, but it’s also important from a stylistic point of view.

Appliances, like radiators, aren’t just appliances anymore – something which many homeowners just hope will fade into the background. They’re fast becoming focal points for the room. There’s no longer any need to stick with your original cast-iron radiator and decorate the rest of the room around it. You can get different styles of radiators that can be made to suit any room and look good too.

A current favourite is tall, thin radiators that snake their way all the way up a wall to the ceiling. Gone are the ugly traditional column and cast iron radiators. Designer radiators are here to stay, and they look a heck of a lot better than their counterparts. Designer radiators come in chrome, stainless steel, and aluminium, as well as different colours.

Replace Your Drapes With Thicker Material

According to estimates, as much as 30 percent of all the heat lost from a home is lost through the windows. That represents a significant bump to your electricity and gas bill. But the good news is that you can stem the loss of heat through judicious investment in drapes.

Thin curtains might be all the rage right now, but thicker drapes can be made to work too, especially when paired with the perfect interior. You don’t want your drapes to look too heavy or overbearing, like something out of Wuthering Heights, but you do want something that will stop heat escaping, especially now winter is approaching.

Most professional drape suppliers will allow you to choose the tog of the material. Selecting a higher tog can help to keep small air pockets within the material, providing additional insulation and reducing heat loss.

Experiment With LED Lighting

LED lights were originally invented back in the 1990s. But, as with any new technology, they were extremely expensive, to begin with. Today that’s all changed, and the cost of LEDs has come down considerably. No, they’re not quite as cheap as old-fashioned incandescent bulbs just yet, but they’re well on their way. And, importantly, they provide greater bang for the buck: LED bulbs are able three times as expensive as regular bulbs, but they may last thirty times as long and use 10 percent of the energy.

There’s also another feature of LED lights that make them particularly appealing to homeowners: their versatility. It turns out that the underlying LED technology is a lot safer than traditional lighting technology and this means that LED lights can be arranged into all sorts of configurations which simply weren’t possible in the past. LEDs can be made so small and use up such little energy that they are now being fashioned into sources of light which mimic things in the natural world, like rushes and twigs. LEDs can also be placed in areas where it would previously have been difficult to put bulbs, again adding to their versatility. Lighting a space from multiple vectors, for instance, is easier with LED bulbs than other varieties.

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Stick With Wood Frames

If all you cared about was looks, which would you choose? Factory-produced UPVC window frames or wood frames? In all likelihood, it’s the latter. And the reason? Factory-produced UPVC frames are generic, ugly and hard to repair if they get damaged. Wooden frames, on the other hand, can be sanded down, chiselled away and be replaced piece by piece if necessary.

But there’s another reason to stick with wooden frames whenever possible: plastic frames are just downright dangerous for the environment. According to health experts, UPVC frames emit a toxin which can harm your health as well as the rest of the environment. Wood frames covered in non-VOC paint don’t.

Fill Your Cavity Walls Before You Start The Decorating

If you’re stripping back your old decor and are looking to replace it with something new, it’s worth thinking about filling the spaces between your cavity walls before you start decorating. Homes which don’t make use of cavity wall insulation can see their gas and electric bills skyrocket. What’s more, halfway through a renovation is the opportune time to start injecting insulating material. It’s cheap, and it’s best to do it while the decorating is ongoing to minimise disruption.

Buy Furniture Made From Recycled Materials

Have you ever wondered where all your recycled plastic and metal goes? Most of it goes back into new packaging products, but a small chunk of it also goes to make furniture.

The great thing about recycled furniture today is that you would never have guessed it was, other than the fact that manufacturers tend to be very proud of the fact. It’s high quality and sometimes more durable than unsustainably sourced furniture, thanks to its high plastic content.

Scrap Radiators Entirely

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As discussed, efforts have been made to redeem radiators. But no matter how hard designers try, they rarely fit into the design of a room. Plus, they’re also not particularly energy efficient according to Clark, which is why you should consider alternatives.

Fortunately, you don’t have to freeze in the winter to keep your home stylish: just choose underfloor heating. Not only does it keep radiators out of your living spaces, but it’s also more energy-efficient, slashing the cost of your gas and electric bills.

Use Local Materials For Renovation Works

Bamboo is often considered to be an eco-friendly material because it grows quickly and comes from bamboo farms. But bamboo is cultivated a long way from its target market. Buyers of bamboo are often people in rich countries in the northern hemisphere, whereas bamboo tends to be grown near to the equator. That means that there’s a lot of energy involved in shipping it to your house. You can bypass all of this, of course, by source sustainable materials locally.

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Colorful Pinch Pleat Curtains for Healthy Mind and Body

Curtains are part of any home decorating ideas. Their presence can be magical when they create a beautiful artistry in homes, offices and hotels. It is no wonder why interior designers would include the curtains in their top ten lists. A window without curtains looks motionless and boring. Curtains are comparable to your dress and they create a convivial atmosphere with their unique designs and style.

Among interior designers highly recommended curtain style are the pinch pleat curtains. They are the typical curtains that look formal and cool. The pleats are intricately sewn to give the curtains fullness while hanging on a decorative drapery rod. Jacquard, floral and prints are ideal fabric designs for a pinch pleat curtain.

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The simplicity of the pinch pleat curtain makes them ideal for any type of architecture. They do not go out of style if they are adorned in baroque and Gothic inspired homes. What’s more if you adorn them in a contemporary or log house. Their appeal is overwhelming and creates an illusion of wealth and fame.

When your room is adorned with pinch pleat curtains, you can feel the luxurious ambiance of a hotel room. As you wake up each morning, you don’t feel like going out from your room. For bedrooms, choose bold colors to keep the emotions burning with passion while having your romantic interlude with your spouse. The most ideal color is burgundy, crimson or any shades of red.

The kids’ room should be adorned with playful colors such as red, yellow, pink, orange, aqua blue and floral prints to keep the mind active. Students are encouraged to adorn their bedroom with red curtains to stimulate their brain and increase the body processes and blood circulation. Rooms with patients who are suffering with psychosomatic illness are advised to hang yellow curtains to purify their minds from any negative thoughts.

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Will These Luxuries Add Value To Your Property?

In every neighborhood, there is one property that stands out. It looks good, and you know it’s worth substantially more than the other properties on that street. It is the property that hits that ceiling price or value for the block. Beyond that, it is often the house we aspire to own, or at least make our property look just as good!

It takes a lot of care and maintenance to achieve a great looking property that the neighbors can be jealous of. Of course, you need to have a quality finish to begin with. And chances are, a few luxuries would be desirable if you were hoping to achieve the ceiling price for your property.

There is a problem with investing heavily in your home, though. That ceiling price may limit what you should do. Spend too much, and you may never get the money back. So how can you be sure the luxuries you fancy will one day ensure a quick sale at the top figure price you desire?

Pool

Owning a pool is good for your health as well as for your financial security in the future. Many homeowners find a swimming pool to be a desirable and beneficial addition. Aside from the upfront cost of installing it, there will be ongoing maintenance costs to ensure it is hygienic. You may need to upgrade the railing, gates or water pumps at some point too. Safety is everything when it comes to a pool.

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Check the railing is secure and at the appropriate height. Make sure the gate locks well, and that the pumps are working efficiently. If they’re not, water pump repairs should be undertaken by professionals, but it might be possible for you to find the spare parts you need. Keep the water clean, and enjoy this much-valued addition to your home.

Hot Tub

Hot tubs are highly desirable at the moment. They offer a place for private entertaining, as well as somewhere to sit and relax after a long day. These days, you can find cost-effective inflatable hot tubs at your local DIY store. However, if you invest a little in a gazebo or private structure and planting, you could ensure a greater return. Look for quality spas and hot tubs that are easy to use, and look good in their place.

Does a hot tub add value to the property? If you’re able to allocate a dedicated area of your garden to this, then yes, it could be quite desirable. However, it may not be enough to increase the value of your home substantially. Check your local property listings or ask a property agent for their opinion about your neighborhood prices.

Summerhouse

If you have a good-sized garden, it can be very tempting to fill the space with extra living areas and structures. Always be wary of doing this. It’s best to consider the type of accommodation you live in. If it is a typical family home, then level lawns and clean paths are essential for children and pets to play. An executive home may need the same or additional patio space for entertaining.

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With that in mind, plan your summerhouse addition carefully. You will want it to be sizeable enough to be practical, but not overwhelm the rest of your garden or yard. Wooden structures that are well cared for are very attractive and highly desirable. This might push the asking price up for you.

Landscaping With Decking And Patio

If you design your garden with care, you can enjoy it for multiple purposes. Think about safe play areas for the kids and a doggy patch that’s out of the way. Perhaps you’re keen to grow your own healthy produce? Landscaping to create these areas means that you can ensure you have the right space and aspect for a great patio and deck. Create a desirable view with the planting of shrubs and flowers. A small flowering tree or fruit tree might also increase the value of your home when it matures.

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If you are showing your home to potential buyers, be sure to set out the patio furniture. This should include a high-quality dining set. Adding place settings to the table can help viewers gauge the size of the space and how many people they could cater for. Give the area a good sweep and power wash to be sure debris and grime are removed.

Garage With Auto Doors

Convenience is everything when people are house hunting. They want easy ways to live the lifestyle they aspire to have. Something as simple as upgrading your garage doors might push the value and desirability of your home all the way up. Remote controlled auto doors offer additional security too. Imagine being able to just drive in and out without having to get wet in the rain. Make sure there are adequate security lights providing illumination along the drive too.

Designer Fitted Kitchen

A high-end kitchen will always be desirable. If it looks contemporary and like new, any potential buyer will be relieved they don’t have to put all the work in. Installing a kitchen takes a long time and a lot of upheavals so most buyers would prefer to have it all done before they move in. Best of all, they’re often willing to pay a premium for it all to be in place and looking grand.

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Look for minimalist fitted kitchens with all the appliances built in. If it’s all hidden away neatly, this can be far more attractive. Make sure there is space for a dining set here, even if it is only a breakfast table or bar. Choose your colors wisely to make sure they are neutral enough for most tastes but offer a good level of vibrancy and energy to be stylish.

Flooring and countertops are very important to potential buyers. Look for better quality materials like granite with a high gloss finish. The details can make all the difference. Soft-close cupboards and drawers, and a big, roomy fridge-freezer will appeal to most potential buyers and might make for a quick sale.

Jacuzzi Bath

Some people love the idea of jumping into a jacuzzi bathtub in their own homes. They imagine the bubbles caressing and soothing their muscles, while the skin enjoys a gentle cleansing. Those that own jacuzzi baths might be less inclined to have another one. They can be noisy, and difficult to clean. This one is a tricky one to gauge when it comes to being a valued investment for your home. If you have no personal use for one, it might be worth avoiding.

Sauna

Saunas are a very healthy way to take care of your body, mind, and skin. They can offer a great deal of relaxation as well as a handy, natural way to detox the skin. Saunas at home don’t need to be very big. You might have one in the corner of your home gym, or it might form part of your family bathroom. They are reasonably easy to maintain and can be used every day.

If you install a sauna in your home, this may attract buyers that are particularly health conscious. The installation cost can vary quite a lot. If you keep the sauna area clean and well-maintained, then it might offer a valued add-on for any potential buyer.

Luxury Bedroom Decor

Buying a new home is often more about buying the lifestyle you desire. Luxury finishes will always be desirable and can indeed demand a higher price for the property. If other homes in your neighborhood are finished to this kind of standard, then it makes sense for you to invest in the right style of decor to compete with them.

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Luxury decor should look like a luxury hotel suite. Imagine a well-dressed bed in a room with plush rugs or carpets, enormous headboards, and designer bedside cabinets. Your master bedroom should be the most attractive room in the house. This is the room where you spend most of your hours when you’re at home, especially if you work full time. It needs to be opulent, luxurious, and comfortable.

New Driveway

Don’t forget – the front view or curb appeal of your home is the very first thing anyone will see. It has to impress, and it has to welcome visitors toward your front door. A big part of this is the driveway. If it’s a little dated now, consider having it re-blocked, bricked, or paved. Some surfaces can look as fresh as new if they’re power washed.

Consider bordering the driveway with green planting. Lawn, shrubs, or even a hedge can look beautiful here. Keep all planting trimmed and tidy. Of course, you might prefer to use artificial plants to keep them low maintenance. Avoid gravel and loose surfaces as they can quickly become untidy and invite neighborhood cats and other animals.

Some luxury touches to your property might make it appear more attractive and become more desirable. This could, in turn, hasten a sale. To really add value, consider the add-ons that are most likely to appeal to the type of people that would want to live in your home. These are the ones that could help you reach that ceiling price.

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