- When you own a home there is necessary seasonal maintenance such as preparing for winter
- Home renovations can be funded with a home equity loan, mortgage refinancing, and government incentives
- Getting a custom financing solution can with completing renovations on time
As the summer comes to an end, and the cooler nights start to transform the trees into brilliant bursts of colour, it’s time to start thinking about home maintenance and preparing for winter in Ontario.
The fall is a perfect time to do some renovations and protect your biggest asset – your home. Whether you are going to do some maintenance to improve your home’s energy efficiency, make repairs, do seasonal updates, or get some interior updates done, this is the time of year to get some work done. Refinancing your mortgage or getting a home equity line of credit can give you the financing you need to ensure you can budget to get good work done when you need it.
Prepare for winter – home efficiency
With cold weather on the way, it is time to consider the energy usage in your home and making upgrades where necessary.
Necessary upgrades may include:
- Roof repairs: inspect your roof for leaks, replace shingles, ensure your home is ready for snow.
- Windows and doors: if you have old windows and doors that are not efficient at keeping in the heat, this is something that can save you money over time.
- Insulation: go up to your attic and ensure the insulation is sufficient, upgrade the insulation in the basement and garage, particularly if it is attached to the house.
- Replace appliances: Old appliances often take a great deal of energy, and new efficient ones can make a big difference to your energy bill.
It is important to keep your home in good shape so that when the winter comes, it doesn’t bring further, preventable damage.
The fall also means dealing with seasonal needs such as:
- cleaning gutters
- fertilizing lawns
- cleaning up flowerbeds
- refinishing the deck
- doing any last minute outdoor painting
It is also time to inspect the furnace before turning it back on to ensure it is working well. You may need to change filters, inspect the pilot light, and ensure that the systems are working well. There is nothing worse than having heating problems in the winter! One option is to get a winter home inspection to confirm you are ready.
Financing home renovations
Home renovations can be expensive and time-consuming, but when you invest in your home, it not only influences the experience of living there, it increases the value. There are many ways to finance renovations and repairs to ensure you have the budget in place to protect your most important and biggest investment.
Government financial incentives
Each province in Canada has incentives that provide rebates to upgrade heating, appliances, and home renovations to cut energy costs. Before the winter comes, you may want to take advantage of these rebates and assistance programs to cut the costs of updates.
Canada has a Greener Homes Initiative program that offers grants and loans to make your home more energy efficient. The Government of Canada has also provided incentives for each province to make your home more efficient.
When your home is more efficient, it is more cost-effective for energy consumption; it is cleaner and therefore kinder to the environment. It is more comfortable without drafts and leaks, and it increases the value of your home.
Home equity lines of credit and refinancing your home
The equity in your home has been growing for as long as you have owned it. If you want to do small seasonal maintenance, you may be able to use your savings for your home maintenance. If the project is larger, a home equity loan or refinancing your mortgage may be a better option.
For example, a roof replacement is one of the more expensive home renovations. In Ontario, roofing costs can be $5,000 – $11,000 to replace depending on the materials used. If your roof is leaking, you need to fix it; if you wait, it will only get worse.
Accessing the equity in your home enables you to get the budget needed to get the job done.
Over the years that you’ve lived in your home and paid the mortgage, you have built up equity. It should be there when you need it, but sometimes it seems hard to access it. As a homeowner, you have options.
1. Mortgage refinancing
You can talk to a mortgage expert and refinance your mortgage for a larger amount to get the money you need to do home renovations. This entails getting a new mortgage to replace the old one so you have options to increase the amount, reduce monthly payments, increase amortization to make it more affordable, and change payment frequency. This is a great option if interest rates are going down or if you get an offer to blend and extend the rate to take advantage of the changing economy.
2. Home equity loan
With a home equity loan, you can use the equity in your residence to access money for your home renovations. This enables you to use your home as collateral so you can take out money when you need it to pay for repairs like roof replacements. With a home equity loan you only pay interest and can pay off the balance whenever you want to. On the other hand, a mortgage has a defined term and penalties if you attempt to pay it off early.
Home renovations in the fall season can be a big project, but also a fulfilling one. You have an opportunity make your residence more energy efficient and more comfortable. Seasonal updates and maintenance, like staining your deck and fertilizing the lawn are low-cost activities, while new windows and doors, roofing and insulation can cost more.
If you are going to do a bigger home renovation project and want to access the equity in your home to access the funds to pay for it, contact the mortgage experts at Mortgage Maestro.
Through an easy online application process, an experienced mortgage professional will guide you through the process and help you get a custom financing solution to suit your needs. Competitive rates, unbiased advice, and broker-assisted solutions can help you find the best solution so you can get the work done on your home and enjoy the winter season.