With a sunny bank holiday fresh in our memories, we’re daring to believe we’ve finally left winter behind. While many of us tackle the traditional spring clean, others are thinking of making bigger changes – and planning a few home improvements over the sunny months that (hopefully) lie ahead.
Creating a patio, building an extension, converting the garage, paving the driveway… whatever the job you’re thinking about, it’s a whole lot easier when the sun’s out and the temperature’s well up in the double digits.
So, a few tips to help you make your summer plans a success:
Know what you’re aiming for
First of all, make sure you know exactly what you’re hoping to achieve. Your project’s bound to have some limits – in particular, available space, planning regulations and finance – so you’ll need a clear picture of what you can realistically aim for.
Once you’ve set the boundaries for your project, it’s time to plan the specifics.
If you’re the kind of handyman/woman who can tackle it all yourself, you’ll need to figure out what materials you’ll need, whether you’ll need any new specialist tools, how long it’ll take, whether you need to book some time off work…
If you’re hiring professionals, they’ll take care of the details – but it’s up to you to choose the right company. Here’s where the internet can really help, so take the time to look around and read plenty of reviews before you go ahead and get a quote (actually, it’s a good idea to get at least three quotes).
Figure out your finances
It might sound negative, but don’t just assume you’ll be able to finance it all. The bigger the job, the more important it is to be sure – there’s nothing worse than leaving a job half-finished while you search around for the cash to complete it.
If you’re planning on using your savings, is this realistic? Are you sure they’ll be enough – and that you’re not going to need them for something else in the meantime?
If you’re saving up for it, remember you only have a maximum of four more months before autumn begins and the nights really start drawing in again. Can you comfortably set aside enough every month to cover the costs? Would it make sense to leave it until next spring? Should you think about topping up by borrowing?
If you are planning to borrow some money, do you know how you’ll borrow? For smaller sums, a credit card or overdraft facility might do the job. More ambitious projects might call for a homeowner loan – one of the more ‘traditional’ ways of financing home improvements. To find out more, you can talk to a qualified loan consultant at Ocean Finance, the company that supplied this article.
They could show you how much you’d need to set aside per month to get the loan repaid, so you can be confident of repaying it. This is particularly important with secured loans, as your property could be at risk of repossession if you don’t keep up with a loan that’s secured on it.
Whatever you’re doing this summer, remember the project starts long before the first tool comes out of the box. Let’s just hope the British summer doesn’t spring any unexpected surprises!