Deciding to begin a home improvement project can be both expensive and time-consuming. However, in many cases, remodeling can add character and value to your home over time. As you consider diving into a home improvement project, perhaps the most important item to have in order is your bank account. Here are some of the best ways to be smart with your money ahead of upcoming remodeling plans.
Setting the proper budget and sticking to it is half the battle when ramping up for a remodel at home. While it’s always fun to explore every renovation possibility with your contractor, doing so might tempt you to spend outside of your means. Be sure to do a full and thorough assessment of your finances well in advance, and set spending guidelines for yourself along the way. If you’re unsure of where to begin when it comes to starting a home improvement budget, set up a meeting with a financial planner and have them help you draft up the right spending schedule for you. Having your finances in place will set you up for success in your renovation endeavors.
Check Monthly Expenses
Beyond getting a budget in place, a good way to try and cut some extra costs as you’re approaching home improvement is by reassessing your monthly expenses. From grocery costs to heating and electric, make a list of the most expensive items you pay for each month and determine how you might be able to lower them. During the winter months, turning down your water heater just a few degrees might save you more on your energy bill than you’d think. When it comes to your monthly mortgage bill, ask yourself if now might be a good time to refinance your mortgage payment. There’s an endless amount of simple changes you can make at home and online to slowly cut down on your recurring payments; by doing your research and taking advantage of these strategies, you’re sure to get the most out of your home improvement project.
Whether you’ve tackled home improvement projects before or not, if you’re hoping to stay smart with your money in the process, your best bet is to start small. Keep communication open with your contractor, and never take on more than you think you can handle. Try your best to keep the bare bones of your home intact throughout the renovation.This will likely save you money in the long run. Though you shouldn’t stop yourself from dreaming big as you draft remodel ideas, make small changes over time, and you’re sure to have some extra money in your bank account as you renovate.
Sell Old Items
It’s no secret that home improvement can get messy, so the fewer items you have to trip over in your home, the better. An excellent way to set yourself up for success both financially and structurally is by selling some of those older items you no longer want or use. From furniture to kitchen appliances, you’d be surprised how many locals might be willing to buy your unwanted items. Get the word out through Facebook and Craigslist, or even have a small garage sale to make some money as you prep for your remodel. This will clear out your home before the chaos of a renovation, and will hopefully help you financially as well.
Originally published Dec. 2019.