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4 Steps to Stress-free Home Improvements

July 24, 2020

Whether it's overhauling your kitchen, adding a sunroom, or something simpler, like a new coat of paint, a home improvement project can be taxing on your budget and your patience. Here are a few tips to help.

Step 1. 
Before you begin anything as costly – and disruptive – as a remodel, it's important to understand why you're doing it. Will the update add value to your home? Create a better environment for entertaining? Write down your dreams for your new space and keep your list handy throughout the project. It may help you stay centered if things get hectic.

Step 2. 
Find the right contractor. Reach out to friends, family, employees, contractor referral sites – even your social media groups – to create a list of potential candidates. Just as you're better equipped to reach a financial goal when you work with a financial advisor who understands you, partnering with a contractor who shares your vision is critical to your project's success.

Step 3. 
Get multiple bids – even for small projects. Home improvement costs can vary widely. Even if the first quote is within your budget, get at least two more quotes. Price shouldn't be the only factor, though. You'll want to ensure the contractor you choose can do the job to your standards. Ask for references, research online reviews and check their Better Business Bureau rating, if applicable.

Step 4. 
Consider your payment options. You could set a savings goal and wait until you've accumulated enough cash, use cash you already have on hand, seek financing options or sell securities. Each of these options comes with its own set of tradeoffs. Your financial advisor can help you weigh them and decide which makes the most sense for your circumstances and goals. Whichever you choose, make sure you have enough cash readily available to meet any unexpected expenses and don't make decisions that might put your other financial goals at risk.

Finally, once the project is complete, contact your insurance company to make sure the improvements are covered under your homeowner's policy. You put a lot into the project. Be sure to protect it.

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