Brenda Maggy's Blog
If you’re looking to make changes to your home in a big way but don’t have the time or the budget, there’s plenty of things that you can do in order to bring your home to another level without breaking the bank.
Look From The Outside In
Enhancing the landscaping and curb appeal of your home can be an easy project to add value and comfort to your home. Whether you’re getting ready to sell or you just want to feel more at home, making your home look more inviting from the outside is a worthwhile project.
Open Some Space
Just knocking down a wall can make a huge difference in your home. Once a wall is removed, it can really transform your space. Be careful though, as knocking down a wall where plumbing is or electrical work is can disrupt a lot. This can become very costly, so you may not want to undertake such a big project. Also be mindful of reconnecting floors or moving features like a kitchen island. Be sure to get a few quotes from contractors for these jobs before you settle with one.
Get New Windows
Putting in new windows is a great project that can add a lot of value to your home. You should really replace the windows in your home every 20-25 years. Updating the windows in your home not only changes the look of your home but makes it more energy efficient as well. The extra insulation can also help to keep out noise disturbances and keep your home a quiet place to live. If you live near a main road, new windows are a must.
There is nothing more attractive to buyers and homeowners alike than new appliances. These are fairly cheap investments considering their returns. You can replace one appliance or go for a whole new kitchen if you’d like. It all depends on the condition of the appliances. Even simply replacing the washer and dryer can make your life easier and also make your home more attractive to buyers when you decide to sell.
Change Up The Floors
Simply switching your carpet or ripping up carpets to put in hardwood floors can be a huge game changer for your home. The costs of these improvements can vary greatly. The size of your rooms and the type of materials that you choose can affect the costs as well.
Putting in shelving or other organizing systems to help you and your family keep organized can be invaluable. Not having to deal with constant clutter can reduce stress and make your home look more presentable. This is another improvement project that is totally worthwhile for you to complete.
For home sellers, maximizing the value of your residence is key. However, it is important to remember the dangers associated with overvaluing your house.
If you overprice your residence, homebuyers may choose to look elsewhere for their dream house. As such, it may take you many weeks, months or years to sell your residence if you fail to price it correctly from the get-go.
So what does it take to avoid the risk of overpricing your home? Here are three tips to help home sellers set a fair price for any residence, in any real estate market, at any time.
1. Review the Housing Market in Your Area.
Spend some time assessing the local housing market – you'll be glad you did. This will enable you to better understand how your home compares to other residences in your city or town so you can price your house accordingly.
Check out the listing prices of homes that currently are available as well as the sold prices of residences that recently were purchased. By doing so, you'll be able to collect a broad assortment of housing market data and use this information to determine the right price for your house.
2. Get Your Home Appraised.
A home appraiser will conduct an in-depth examination of your residence, help you identify problem areas and determine your house's value. That way, you'll be able to enter the real estate market with realistic expectations and set a fair asking price based on your home appraisal.
Furthermore, a home appraisal offers valuable insights into ways that you can improve your home. The assessment will allow you to learn about the pros and cons of your home, and ultimately, determine the best ways to transform your house's weaknesses into strengths.
Don't forget to evaluate your home's interior and exterior as well. Completing home improvement tasks will improve your residence inside and out. Plus, performing home maintenance may allow you to set a higher asking price than you initially expected.
3. Hire an Experienced Real Estate Agent.
Let's face it – navigating the real estate market can be a long, arduous process. Thankfully, real estate agents are available that possess extensive industry experience and know-how, ensuring you can set the right price for your house without delay.
Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent understands the ins and outs of both buyer's and seller's markets. As such, he or she can offer recommendations about how to price your home, enhance your house's interior and exterior and much more.
With the right real estate agent at your disposal, you should have no trouble setting a fair price for your home. In addition, this professional will do whatever it takes to promote your house to the right homebuyers consistently, bolstering your chances of optimizing the value of your residence.
Don't leave anything to chance when you sell your home. Instead, employ a real estate agent, and you can speed up the process of selling your residence.
Since home values are continually on the rise, it makes more sense for many Americans to tap into their home equity for financial security. The home equity line of credit is a great resource that has come back with many benefits. You can finance so many things from home improvement projects to the vacation you have always wanted with a reverse mortgage. There are consequences if you don’t turn to home equity with careful thought. You could end up owing more than your home is even worth at a certain point. That’s not giving you any value.
Smart Financial Moves
Tapping into a home equity line of credit could be a smart financial move. If you use little to none of the money it can be wise to have extra cash on hand for emergencies, considering rates are so low for home loans. It can help you to be prepared for unexpected financial setbacks. The key is to not use the money unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Good Ideas For Home Equity
- Emergency fund
- Home renovations
- Education funds (if you’ll be able to pay it back in a timely manner)
Bad Ideas For Home Equity
- Car purchase
- Random spending
If you’re expecting an increase in income and need some extra cash on hand for a purpose, using a home equity line of credit can be a good resource. Also, if you’re selling your home soon, tapping into home equity for improvement projects can help to give you a better return on the sale.
Home Equity Is Not An Unlimited Source Of Funds
Home values can change drastically with the market and the amount of demand. The amount of equity you may have can change as well, and your repayment amounts can vary drastically based on the state of the housing market. While tapping into home equity will most likely put you in the positive, you could end up in the negative if you’re not carefully prepared.
The Ways To Draw On Your Home Equity
There are 3 main ways to draw on your home’s equity. In any of these cases, you cannot borrow more than 80% of your home’s value from any lender.
This loan is exactly as it sounds; you take a set mount of cash out from your home and refinance it at the same time.
Home Equity Loan
This is a loan that is sometimes referred to a second mortgage. This usually has a fixed rate.
Home Equity Line Of Credit
This loan is like using a credit card. There’s a maximum that you can borrow, and you use money as you need it. After a certain amount of time, you can no longer draw on the money.
Refinancing your home will extend the life of your mortgage. You’ll have higher costs but end up with lower rates most often.
Questions To Consider When Thinking Of A Home Equity Line Of Credit
- Does your home need renovations?
- Is the loan rate lower than other types of loans like car loans?
- Do you need to consolidate your debt?
- Are you facing large bills like medical bills or college tuition?
- Are you starting a business?
Used in smart ways, home equity can be a great financial resource for you. Consider your options and plan your finances wisely. Your home is in fact your biggest asset!