Best Home Improvement Loan Rate – 5 FAQs

As the name implies, home improvement loans are special loans that banks and other lenders extend to homeowners for the purposes of making improvements on a home. Improvements that are allowed can fall into any number of categories, including indoor and outdoor improvements.

In general, banks who extend these types of loans to customers would like the home improvements to be something that will increase – or at least maintain – the value of the home so as to preserve the home equity.

Borrowers can generally take out this type of loan from their current mortgage lender, or they can shop around to other lenders. The homeowner has no particular obligation to go with their existing mortgage lender when it comes to borrowing money in the form of this type of loan.

Of course, if you are looking to borrow money to make improvements to your house, you will want to shop around to try to qualify for the lowest-possible rate; shaving just 1-2% off of your loan interest rate could save you thousands of dollars in interest payments.

If you are looking for the best home improvement loan rate, here are the answers to 5 frequently-asked-questions (FAQs) about home improvement loans:

1. Do home improvement loans require that I put up collateral?

A: Many home improvement lenders require that you put up collateral, usually in the form of home equity. They may extend to you, for example, a 75% LTV (loan-to-value) loan. This simply means that the total amount borrowed plus existing mortgage balance together must equal less than 75% of the home’s appraised value.

However, some lenders do offer this type of loan without requiring that the borrower put up any collateral. It is important to shop around until you find a lender that is willing to agree to your desired loan terms.

2. Is there a minimum or maximum loan amount?

A: Most lenders will usually require a minimum loan amount of, for example, $5,000. And, there will be a maximum loan allowed, as well. For those lenders who require collateral in the form of home equity, the maximum can be easily calculated based upon the type of loan (e.g., 70% LTV, 75% LTV, etc.).

3. How do interest rates compare to credit card interest rates?

A: In almost all cases, interest rates for this type of loan are going to be lower than if you borrowed the same amount against a credit card.

4. How do I access the money?

A: You may be paid the money you borrowed in a single, lump sum. In other cases, you may be able to set up the loan payments to where you simply withdraw the amount you need, much as you would when using a credit card or writing checks.

5. Are these short-term or long-term loans?

A: In general, the best home improvement loans are relatively short-term loans. This is especially true if you decide to borrow the money on a borrow-as-you-go basis. However, if you choose to get a lump-sum type of loan, your repayment terms may be longer term, such as 5 or 10 years.

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Home Improvement for Less: Discount Home Improvement

A beautiful, well-kept home is something to be proud of. Home improvement, however, is usually an expensive undertaking. But if you know where to look, you can always find discount home improvement supplies at amazingly low prices.

Like most people, I’m sure you don’t want to pay more than you have to. The same applies to home improvement tools and materials that you need for your home beautification project. When you shop at discount home improvement centers, you’ll find what you need at a fraction of the regular price. Here are a few home centers where you can find everything you need for less.

Lowe’s

This is a one-stop shop where you can buy things you need for home improvement at a lower price. Tools, appliances, kitchen cabinets, tiles, lighting, home decor and more are all available at Lowe’s.

Home Depot

Like Lowe’s, Home Depot carries a full line of supplies for home improvement at discounted prices. This franchise company specializes in tools and materials that you need to improve your home.

Big John’s Closeouts

When you need discount home items, Big John’s Closeouts comes to mind. You get supplies at deeply discounted prices from this outlet that specializes in closeouts, liquidations, overruns, transportation damaged building materials, and bankruptcies.

Habitat for Humanity ReStores

Items from these outlets are usually donated goods for resale. These goods are sold to the public at a fraction of the regular retail price. Shop around and you may find something you like.

Local Hardware Stores and Home Centers

Check out your local hardware store for promotions and discounts, such as buy one and get one free. You can also head to the back of the store to find discount supplies. Some items may need a little repair but they can still serve their purpose. You may also find a wider selection of items at local stores.

Come Up With a Budget

When you plan on improving your home it’s always best to keep a certain amount in mind that you are willing to pay. Naturally, you don’t want to end up spending more than you can afford. A realistic budget will ensure that you can complete your project while keeping costs to a minimum.

When preparing your budget, think of areas where you can save money.

Shop online to find the best deals. Home improvement discounts are easy to find on the internet. You’ll find more choices and bigger discounts too.

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