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Home Equity, Mortgage & Home Buying

Home Improvement Tasks to Tackle in the New Year

If you never got around to those nagging home improvement efforts during the first 10 months of the pandemic, it’s not too late. You’re likely still spending extra time around the house. And now that the holidays are behind us, it’s time to start the New Year fresh. Whether you want to get organized, or you have a more involved remodel project in mind, we’ve got a range of home improvement tasks to tackle in the New Year so you can continue loving your space.

One-Day Home Improvement Projects You Can Do

There are a variety of do-it-yourself (DIY) home improvement projects you can do in half a day’s work and a few hundred dollars. For example, if your garage or storage area needs a reorganization, take advantage of retailer discounts right now on storage containers and simple shelving to help you declutter. Start by dividing items into what you want to trash, donate and keep. Then assess your available space to determine how much shelving and storage you’ll need. Consider how you use what you store in the garage. Everyday items should be easily accessible. Less-used items can be tucked away or put up on higher shelves.

Other one-day home improvements could include reseeding or putting new sod down on your lawn, replanting new flowers and shrubbery in your planters, adding shelving to your kitchen pantry for additional storage, or putting a fresh coat of paint in your powder room.

Home Improvement Tasks to Tackle With Help

Not every home improvement job can be a solo project. Some projects require additional investment and/or the help of someone with a little experience or “handiness.” For example, if you have a few thousand dollars to devote to a project, consider how it could best be invested back into your home. Maybe you want to retile your bathroom floor or shower, or update plumbing fixtures and hardware throughout your home to give it a more modern look. These are home improvement projects to do with someone who’s done these jobs before, or you risk a longer project timeline and potential mishaps that could end up costing you.

Taking Advantage of Your Equity for Home Improvements

If building a backyard oasis or remodeling your kitchen are on your list of home improvements, you’re looking at a much larger investment of time and money. Thankfully, rates for home equity loans and lines of credit are at historic lows at the same time that home values are on the rise. This means you could borrow against the value of your home, or do a cash-out refinance that would lower your mortgage rate and allow you to reinvest the additional funds, thereby increasing your home’s value. In fact, depending on how much you borrow and how much you lower your rate, you could even see your monthly payment go down or stay the same despite pulling out funds for that project.

Any type of remodeling or a larger construction project that’s on your list of home improvements should be handled by a professional. Take the time to get bids from several licensed and bonded contractors. The best way to find a trusted resource is to ask friends and family for a referral. Make sure the contractor has done the specific work you are looking for and that you get everything in writing. The more detail they provide in the bid, the less likely you are to go over budget. Even still, you should plan for a 10-20% cost increase over the original bid to account for unknowns like permitting and bringing things up to code. Oftentimes, contractors don’t know what they’ll be dealing with until they start ripping out walls.

Orange County’s Credit Union Can Help You Tackle Home Improvement Tasks

Taking advantage of your home’s equity is a great way to tackle home improvement tasks in the New Year. Orange County’s Credit Union offers competitive rates and a seamless experience. If you want to learn more about your options, contact an Orange County’s Credit Union Mortgage Loan Consultants today.

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