Home Sweet Home Magazine - January 2022

Pay off Debt It’s challenging to set aside money for home repairs and even more so when you’re also making debt payments. Whether you’re still paying off education loans or credit card bills, make debt reduction a priority so you have more financial freedom. Not only will you be out from under the debt, but you’ll be able to invest the money you were paying in interest toward home improvements that increase the value of your home. Seeing your progress is inspiring! Don’t wait for once-a-month payments. Instead, make small payments as you have a bit of extra cash. When you return a $30 item, get online and make a $30 payment. Put your debt on paper and adjust the amount with every payment. Cancel cable, Netflix, Amazon Prime and lawn and cleaning services until your debt is paid off. These are short-term sacrifices with long-term benefits. Make your Savings Visible You’re working hard to shave dollars here and cents there, so put the money where you can see it. This is motivation toward your bigger goal. Use a glass jar, a separate savings account or an

envelope. Each time you add to it, give yourself a pat on the back. For a tangible measurement, go old

school with a vertical bar on poster board you can color in until you reach your goal.

Save During Home Improvement Too

in a bathroom remodel, avoid moving existing plumbing and electrical as much as possible. This is the main expense for many renovations. Also, dive in on the portions you have the ability and tools to complete, such as flooring, painting, cabinet installation or toilet placement. Consider refinishing the sink and bathtub if they don’t need replacing. You can also save money on a prefabricated vanity or refinished cabinets instead of custom or semi-custom cabinets. However you go about trimming your budget and starting the savings process, remember you’re working toward a meaningful goal that will improve your surroundings and your home investment.

Once you’ve saved funds for your renovation or other home improvement project, watch for savings during the process. Keep an eye out for sales on holidays like Labor Day and Memorial Day when appliances, paints and stains are commonly on sale. Hit up discount warehouses for lumber, floorcoverings, landscaping rocks and more. Also watch for coupons for major home improvement stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot. Check out eBay, where you can pick up a coupon for a few dollars that can then be used for 10% off any purchase, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars. Depending on the scope of your project, you can save additional funds by tackling some of the work yourself. You may be able to salvage items, too. For example,

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