Whether you’re swapping your old bathroom vanity for a new vanity or remodeling your entire bathroom, you’re looking at several hundred — if not several thousand — dollars in cost. It’ll be worth it in the long run, as a new bathroom will add value to your home and be more convenient. However, you need to put some serious thought into how you’ll finance the project. Consider which of the following four ways to finance your remodel is best for you.
If you’ve been practical, you’ve been putting away a small percentage of your income into savings for years. If you’ve been fortunate, you haven’t had to spend much of that savings on unexpected expenses. If you can finance your remodel out of your savings while still leaving yourself a comfortable cushion, do so. It’s not only satisfying to pay off the whole cost at once, it will prove less stressful as you won’t have to worry about monthly payments and interest.
If you don’t have quite enough money to comfortably deplete your savings, raise additional cash by selling items around the house at a yard sale, estate sale or online. Alternatively, sell something you’ve baked or crafted at a local bake sale, crafting convention or community event. The main drawback of using your savings is that then you’ll have less of a safety cushion for financial emergencies.
Your Credit Cards
If everyone waited until they had enough saved to remodel, few people would remodel their homes at all. Even the most diligent savers may be faced with emergency home repairs or medical bills that exhaust their savings. If you’re in a comfortable financial position, adding the remodeling costs to your credit card may be the way to go.
Relying on your credit card means there will be no credit check, and if your limit is high enough, you can start tomorrow. Plus, there will be no waiting for funds from a loan. You will encounter higher interest rates, but if you diligently pay it back and believe you’ll have soon have the funds to pay it off entirely, a credit card may be the best option.
Your Social Circle
Ask friends and family members who are in more financially comfortable positions to lend you the money. If there isn’t a single person who can lend you the money, pool funds from a number of people until you have enough. However, don’t sour any relationships by defaulting on your loan.
If there’s written proof of the loan (as there should be), you could get in legal trouble by not repaying at an agreed-upon rate. Don’t get lazy just because it’s your friends and family lending you the money. If you go this route, you can get your funds interest free and without a credit check.
A Home Equity Loan
If you don’t expect to have the funds for the remodel in a few months, if you don’t want to risk your relationships and you’re worried about the high interest of credit cards, choose a home equity loan. With your home as collateral, a bank may be willing to help you as long as you pass a credit check. A loan will not only help you build good credit, but it will allow you greater flexibility in deciding how long it will take you to pay it back.
As This Old House points out, you don’t have to have perfect credit to finance a bathroom remodel. There are numerous ways to secure financing for your project that don’t involve credit checks. However, if you do go that route, be sure that the costs won’t produce any additional strain on your finances. Meet with a financial advisor to discuss a remodeling budget that would best suit your current debt-to-income ratio.