Affordability Factors

Energy Star Credit MD DC VA

If you are like me, your home is your biggest investment.

You need to protect it, because its value depends on its condition. As any homeowner knows, that means spending money for upkeep and maintenance. With a roof, siding, insulation, doors, windows, garage doors, and gutters to consider, in addition to mechanical systems, there are many demands on your wallet.

Looking down the estimate page at a home improvement of $10,000 or more can make your blood run cold. But it doesn’t have to be daunting.

Taking on needed home improvements can be more affordable that you think. The average exterior remodeling project of $10,000 can be financed fairly easily. It can cost $167 per month (or less) to borrow those funds. That’s about the cost of one meal out a week.

On the flip side, what is the cost of NOT making improvements? You could be causing irreparable harm to the structure of your home. A leaking roof or window left unattended can leave you with rotted wood behind your walls. This infiltration of moisture can cause interior damage over time if left unchecked. This can eventually lead to a much bigger repair cost down the road. Really, investing now and paying over time is really the prudent choice to secure your investment.

Even with poor credit, it may be easier to secure a loan for home improvements than other consumer credit loans. Banks holding your mortgage loan are eager for you to improve your home because it protects their asset, too. It is actually one of the best ways to repair your credit.

“Home equity loans are actually available for people with bad credit. While it can be difficult to find the right lender, homeowners with poor credit can secure loans that consolidate debt and, if repaid on schedule, can repair their credit scores. A home equity loan with bad credit can be used to make improvements or upgrades on the house. They’re attractive since they offer better rates than those charged on personal loans or plastic.” – Lendingtree.com

Even if you are getting ready to sell your home, the return on your investment for exterior home remodeling projects is an obvious win. Houses that are well maintained and energy efficient tell potential buyers that their investment will be a wise one. Insulation upgrades, for example, can return 130.9% of their value while simultaneously improving energy efficiency by as much as 20%*. Entry door replacement yields a 98% return on your investment, with similar 20% increase in energy efficiency*. Not to mention that a home with a shiny new door alleviates the need for the buyer to have to consider that purchase themselves after they move in.  In fact, US News recommends keeping your maintenance records and receipts  for upgrades to bolster your home’s value.

When you are considering the future of your home ownership, protecting it is the best financial decision you can make. Whether you are getting ready to sell your home or plan on staying put, protecting your investment is your best bet.

*Source- Remodeling Magazine 2016 Cost vs. Value Report and US Department of Energy at www.energystar.gov

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