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While remodeling in Maryland can be a great way to invest in the future value of your home, it’s still an expense up front. How much they cost depends on a number of factors – how extensive of a project it is, how high-end the materials are, and whether you do it yourself or have it done by professionals. But no matter what, it will likely be a significant expense. That means you need to spend a significant amount of time figuring out the best way to pay for it. Here are some tips to help you figure out the best fit for your finances.
The absolute best way to pay for anything, from a bottle of wine to a new wine cellar, is cash. Particularly if you have the chops to do most of the work yourself, you can save up and buy supplies a little at a time, and chip away at projects slowly. Even the lowest interest rates still charge interest, so paying for things up front will always save you cash in the long run. The downside to this is it will likely deplete your savings, which could take years to build back up. And while it’s almost always better to pay cash than go into debt, dipping into an emergency fund for a non-emergency remodel could end up hurting you in the long run.
For more expensive remodel projects in Maryland, such as a whole home remodel, cash may not be an option. Kitchen and bathroom projects are notoriously expensive — even low-end bathroom remodels can cost close to $8,000, according to remodelingcalculator.og. This is why when choosing which room to remodel first, cost is a factor. Or maybe you have a deadline for your project’s completion, and saving up enough money would take too long. Or maybe you’d just prefer not to dip into your savings for a non-emergency. There are several loan options available, and each should be thoroughly researched to see which makes the most sense for you, based on your finances and the scope of your project.
One option is refinancing your mortgage to get a lower interest rate. If you qualify (you’ll want to talk to your banker or a mortgage lender), a lower interest rate could mean lower monthly payments, and that could mean more cash available for your Annapolis remodeling project.
HOME REMODELING LOAN
There are several government loan programs in Maryland, including rehabilitation loans and special loans and grants. While they are mostly geared toward essential remodels and repairs, check with your city or county to see if there are Community Home Improvement Program loans available, which are subsidized loans that give extremely low interest rates.
HOME EQUITY LOAN
This is a secondary loan that uses the equity your home has built up as collateral. If you can quality, a home equity loan offers lower interest rates than a credit card or some other types of loans. Bear in mind that your home is the collateral, which means the bank might be able to foreclose if you run into trouble and can’t pay back the loan.
Generally, high credit card debt is a pretty risky move. But if a personal loan seems too scary, credit cards are a relatively no-hassle way to finance a remodeling project, particularly smaller-end projects that you can pay for in stages. Ideally, you can put a chunk of the expense on your credit card, pay off all or most of the balance each month, and continue doing that until the project is done. You can also look into cards that have zero interest for six months to a year. Some sites might recommend using a rewards card, but beware: you have to spend a lot of money to really start cashing in on those rewards, so unless you’re sure you can pay off the card quickly or swing the monthly payments long-term, don’t dive into credit card debt just for the lure of rewards.