Kathleen Donovan - Charlestown RI Real Estate, Richmond RI Real Estate, Exeter RI Real Estate


If you’re trying to decide whether it’s best to move from your current home or to make the necessary improvements on the home, it’s not an easy decision. One thing you may have to consider is how to get the capital in order to have those home improvements done. 

There’s a variety of options available to you in order to secure a loan to renovate your home. Whether you need to renovate the kitchen, build out from your current property, or replace the heating system, there’s ways that you can get the money to complete these necessary updates. 


One thing to consider about any of the options discussed is that you don’t want to be paying for home improvement loans until you need to update everything once again. If you’re preparing to sell your home, making improvements is a wise choice, as it can increase the return that you’ll get on your home. 

Don’t Run Out Of Cash


 If you cannot complete the improvements that you started, you may not be able to get another loan to complete them. You can typically borrow between 80 and 90% of your home equity. The downside to refinancing your home or taking out home equity lines of credit is that you’ll need to pay closing costs once the loan is approved. In other words, you’ll need to put out some cash in order to get some cash. 

Use Your Own Cash

If you have some cash saved up, it’s wise to just do one project at a time. This can take some time, but can be more economical in the long run. If you don’t need to complete your repairs in a hurry, then using your own savings is a good idea.

Refinance Your Home

If you would benefit from a lower interest rate, refinancing your home can be a great option. As long as the cost of repairs doesn’t exceed the number of years that the updates will last, refinancing makes sense. 

Home Equity Credit Line


If your mortgage is locked in and working for you, home equity lines of credit are always a good option. You can draw money out as you need it and pay it back as you go. You won’t need to pay interest until you use the money and the loan is good for 10 years. The downside is that if you don’t make the payments, you could lose your home.   

Home Equity Loans

This type of loan allows you to borrow a fixed amount and then pay back the loan with a fixed monthly installment. A 15 year term is typical of this type of loan.


Construction Loans


A construction loan can be used to build a house or to make large-scale renovations. These loans are short-term and not always easy to find access to. Not to mention that they are heavily managed and perhaps the least popular option presented here. 


FHA 203K Loans


This type of loan is generally used to purchase a home that is in need of much repair. The downside is that you’ll need mortgage insurance for the entire life of the loan. Less complicated repairs often offer a more streamlined FHA loan of up to $35,000. 


FHA Title 1 Loans


These loans provide up to $25,000 for home improvements. The money is insured by the federal government and can be obtained from approved lenders. Homeowners don’t need access to equity in order to get one of these loans and they are available in 20 year terms. 


These are just some of the options that are available to you as a homeowner seeking ways to get cash to make improvements to your home. You can tap into other types of personal loans including credit cards. Really, you need to do what’s best for your finances. It’s good to know that there’s options available to you to improve your home.


Attending an open house should be a fun, exciting experience. An open house enables you to view a residence and determine whether a home is right for you. As such, if you know what to expect from an open house, you can plan ahead and maximize the value of this event.

Preparing for an open house can be simple. Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you get ready to attend an open house.

1. Review a Home Listing

A home listing enables you to learn about a house's age, condition and other factors. Thus, you'll want to review a home listing closely to ensure it is worth your time to visit an open house.

If a home listing grabs your attention, it may be beneficial to attend an open house. That way, you can get an up-close look at a residence.

On the other hand, if a home listing fails to garner your interest, you may want to consider other residences. Because if you attend an open house for a residence that falls short of your expectations, you risk wasting precious time and resources.

2. Put Together a List of Questions

When it comes to preparing for an open house, it often helps to put together a list of questions about a residence. By doing so, you can ask pertinent questions about a home and gain the insights you need to decide whether to submit an offer.

There is no such thing as a "bad" question to ask during an open house. Therefore, you should be unafraid to ask any questions about a house when you attend this event.

Remember, the more information that you have about a home, the more likely it becomes that you can make the best-possible decision about a residence. If you ask plenty of questions during an open house, you can obtain home insights that you otherwise may struggle to receive elsewhere.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

An open house may prove to be a daunting experience, particularly for those who are pursuing a home for the first time. Luckily, real estate agents are available who can help you plan ahead for any open house, at any time.

With an expert real estate agent at your side, you can get the support you need to succeed during the homebuying journey. In fact, this housing market professional will learn about your homebuying goals and ensure you can accomplish them in no time at all.

Typically, a real estate agent will keep you informed about open houses in your city or town. This housing market professional is happy to attend open houses with you and offer homebuying insights and recommendations as well.

If you want to get the most out of the homebuying journey, it pays to hire an expert real estate agent. Reach out to a local real estate agent today, and you can hire a housing market professional to guide you along the homebuying journey.


Moving to a new home quite literally uproots your entire life. From moving day on, you’ll be learning to navigate your new home and rebuilding your daily routines.

The first week in your new home is both the most excited and the most chaotic. Boxes are likely still scattered around the house, you’re constantly forgetting where the light switches are, and trying to figure out how to arrange your furniture.

With all of these changes going on it can be easy to get overwhelmed in your new home. That’s why we’ve put together this list of things you should do in your first week at your new house to get settled in and prepared for your new life.

On Moving Day

Day one of your move can only run so smoothly. As a result, it’s important to try and relax throughout the day. Remind yourself that you don’t need to unpack and arrange everything today. It’s also a good idea to keep a checklist of everything you need to accomplish on moving day, whether that’s paying movers, handing over keys, or turning on utilities.

Since the majority of your belongings will likely be in disarray for the next few days, you should make sure you have a box of your daily essentials clearly labeled that you can unpack first. We’re talking about toothbrushes, toiletries, and anything else you’ll absolutely need to get your day started.

The First Week in Your New Home

Once you’ve made it past the first day the hardest part is over. It will soon be easier to get a good night’s sleep in your new bedroom, and your morning routine will run more smoothly.

To be best prepared for the first week in your new home, we’ve prepared a checklist of important items to tackle so that you’re fully settled in as soon as possible.

  • Familiarize yourself with the home. Safety should always be your first priority, even at home. Take the time to find out where your circuit breaker is, your water main valve, light switches, fire extinguishers, and so on. Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, or just change the batteries so you know the exact date they were changed.
    It’s also a good idea to develop a fire escape route. Since you and your family aren’t as familiar with the layout of your new home as your old one, it’s important to understand where the best exits are in case of an emergency. Pick a landmark outside that you’ll meet at in case of a fire.

  • Change your locks. A top priority for your first week should be changing out your locks. Not everyone is careful with their keys and discriminate in who they give them to. Whether you choose to hire a locksmith or buy and replace the locks yourself, it’s better to get this task accomplished sooner rather than later.

  • Deep clean. You won’t soon have another opportunity to clean a house that isn’t filled with meticulously arranged furniture. The first week in your new home is a good time to clean the carpets, scrub the corners of each room, and do a thorough cleaning of your refrigerator and cabinets. It’s tempting to start putting items where they’ll go as soon as you arrive, but cleaning first will save you time later. The same principle applies for painting your walls.


Your bathroom can quickly become one of the dirtiest places in the house even after a deep clean. Knowing the most important places to focus on in the bathroom can make or break the appearance of your bathroom. Read on for some tips to help keep your bathroom spic and span. 


Toothpaste Causes Gunk And Build Up


You don‘t want toothpaste gunk to get ahead of you. Use all-purpose cleaners to quickly wipe away any toothpaste. Use baking soda or some other kind of abrasive cleaner to get up any stubborn toothpaste that won’t come up. Remember not to use abrasive cleaners on any surfaces that may scratch easily.


Keep The Toilet Tidy


The toilet is one of the more difficult areas of your home to clean. Keep ahead of the dirt in the toilet by spraying the bowl down with an all purpose cleaner or vinegar and water. The bowl can be sanitized easily with 1/4 cup of bleach or commercial toilet cleaner.


The Shower: Where You Get Clean


You need to get your shower in good shape so you feel clean once you get out of the shower. A gunky shower head can cause hard water due to lime build up. Attach a bag of vinegar over the shower head with a rubber band. Leave it on the shower head for 1 hour. Then, turn the shower on to flush with water. 


In the tub, make a baking soda and vinegar paste, or use an all-purpose cleaner to remove soap scum and grime. Any rust stains can be removed with a stain-fighting cleaner.  


Surface Clean Up


The different surfaces of your bathroom require different cleaning methods. For most surfaces, a damp mop will suffice to start. Many cleaning products can scratch or ruin certain materials so it is always best to err on the side of caution. A mild detergent can be used to help get rid of any dirt and grime on most surfaces. 


Marble and granite can be vacuumed first to remove any debris. You shouldn’t use any sort of wax or acidic product to clean these types of stone. 


Tile can be wiped with mild detergents and flushed down with water. You want to avoid using any harsh cleaning products that can ruin the tile. Wax and polish are no-gos on tile surfaces.


The best way to keep your bathroom clean is to do frequent quick cleanings. You don’t want to wait for dirt and grime to build up before you bother taking the time to tidy up the area.     

                 


Clutter can be overwhelming, particularly for a home seller who wants to generate plenty of interest in his or her residence. However, there are many quick, easy ways to declutter your house, including:

1. Organize All of Your Belongings.

Although you may have accumulated many items over the years, a step-by-step approach will enable you to organize all of your belongings and declutter your residence at the same time.

To get organized, take a close look at all of the items in your home. Then, sort through these items and differentiate your must-have items from the non-essential ones. This will enable you to declutter your house with ease.

Remember, if you devote the necessary time and resources to organize your belongings now, you can clean up your living space. And as a result, you may be able to make your home an attractive option to a wide range of homebuyers and boost your chances of a quick sale.

2. Add Storage.

If you choose to keep a broad assortment of items in your home, you may want to pick up storage bins. That way, you can place various items in storage bins, label the bins accordingly and store the bins in an attic or basement to minimize clutter.

Furthermore, decorative storage options are available for those who want to declutter without sacrificing their distinct sense of style. For example, chests and dressers make it simple to store clothing and accessories and may help enhance your living space's décor. Also, file cabinets ensure you can store your documents with ease.

Don't forget about garage storage cabinets, either. These cabinets can make a world of difference for home sellers who have assorted tools scattered throughout a garage. In addition, garage storage cabinets often are portable, which means you can bring these cabinets with you after you sell your house.

3. Get Rid of Junk.

Junk can be problematic, but one individual's junk is another's treasure, and it may be simple to find many people to take junk off of your hands.

If you have a large collection of non-essential items that look great and work properly, you may want to consider hosting a yard sale. By doing so, you can declutter your residence and earn extra cash by selling assorted non-essential items.

You may be able to donate non-essential items to local charities as well. And in some instances, you could receive a tax deduction for your charitable donations.

When it comes to decluttering your residence, there is no need to clean up your house alone. Thankfully, your real estate agent can offer guidance and tips to help you take the guesswork out of decluttering. This real estate professional will make it easy for you revamp your house, and as such, help you optimize the value of your residence.

Spend some time decluttering your home – you'll be happy you did. With hard work and attention to detail, you can declutter your residence and bolster its appearance .




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