for your remodeling plan
9. Squeeze money from home improvement stores
You can often find
very attractive promotions through home improvement centers, 5 percent to 10 percent
off a major purchase from The Home Depot or Lowe's, or zero interest for a year
on windows from Sears. "If your first purchase is for $25,000 in cabinets, that
is a lot of money," says Fritschen.
are meant to drive up sales. As long as you follow the rules to the letter, they
make sense. But, just like with credit-card offers, a missed or late payment,
even by a day, could set off retroactive interest rate that wipes out the benefit
and more. Also like credit cards, it is often a good idea to have a refinancing
method lined up before you commit to the charge. That way you arenít stuck with
an expiring promotion and no way to pay it off.
10. Watch out for loans from a contractor, family member or other private party
Some contractors will "help you out" by offering to front money for
repairs, but Ferrara warns that a contractor loan, as with any private-party loan,
is an incredibly risky proposition. That's because commercial lenders use standard
documents and would be less likely than a private lender to slip in onerous clauses.
"A great rule of thumb for any paperwork is, the longer the document and
the smaller the print, the closer you should look at it," he says.
you are borrowing from family, make sure you know what you are getting into. While
many families get along just fine, introduce money into the equation and you could
be putting your relationships at risk. "You have to keep your mind open to
a world of possibilities, but if you are using a non-traditional loan, read the
fine print, and read it again," Ferrara says. "It may even make sense
to have a lawyer scan over the paperwork if you are getting the loan from someone
other than a lender."