Using Your Tax Return
Using Your Tax Return

By Kelsey Trumbull

Mar 6, 2018

Not sure what to do with your tax return? You can use the money to make some much needed upgrades to your home! Whether you are thinking of selling your home or planning on staying for a while, these suggestions for using your tax return for home renovations are sure to add value to your home.

If you have less than $1,000

Focus on the smaller details of yourhome. Change out that mailbox that may have been hit a time or two (we won’t tell). Change the color of your front door, or even upgrade to a brand-new door! Be prepared to pay a little more if you have your eye on a steel front door. Give your home a fresh coat of paint, whether it’s the actual home or just the shutters or trim. Treat yourself to a new lighting fixture in the kitchen. Switch out all light bulbs to more efficient, energy saving bulbs; maybe even upgrade to a few smart light bulbs, like this starter kit for $179.00. You can’t renovate an entire kitchen on this budget, but you can add a nice backsplash, update cabinet hardware, or even get some new energy efficient appliances. You could even hire professionals to come clean the exterior/interior of your home. You’d be surprised the difference clean carpets and power washed driveways can make.

If you have $2,000

You can do a lot with this budget. Pick a nice new color for your interior walls, maybe adding an accent wall here or there. Replace those eye-sore pieces of furniture or rugs. Upgrade your kitchen counters to something more modern. You could install several smart home technology systems, such as smart thermostat, smart doorbell/security cameras, smart shades, and phone or voice controlled light switches. Open some space by knocking down that wall that’s been driving you nuts. If you’re more of a DIY-er, before picking up a sledgehammer be sure to consult with a professional to avoid taking down a load-bearing wall.

If you have over $5,000

Depending on how much you have to spend there is the potential for some pretty big renovations. For lower budgets closer to the $5,000, you could add a deck or front porch. These will not only bring big benefits to you while living in the home but will add value to your home and can be a big selling point when trying to sell. Make some upgrades to a larger bathroom or renovate a smaller one. Sticking to just a few upgrades will keep costs down. If you’re looking to completely revamp a bathroom, it can cost anywhere between $7-10,000 depending on what you want to do. You can change out the flooring in a room or two. Install new windows that are going to help keep costs down.

The kitchen can be a pretty big project but is one of the most used and therefore important rooms in your home. If your budget extends towards $8-10,000, you should be able to afford new countertops, redo cabinets with a fresh paint or stain, add a back splash or new lighting fixtures, and possibly some new EnergyStar kitchen appliances. A kitchen renovation is one that is sure to add value to your home. For more ideas on home renovations that give the most bang for your buck, check out this interview with our Chief Appraiser!

Investing your tax return into home renovations is great way to add value to your home regardless of whether you’re selling soon or not. Use these suggestions to help you decide what you can do within your given budget, or consider other options to help finance renovations. If you are looking to buy a new home, another way to use your tax return is as a down payment.

If you have any questions or want more information about the homebuying process, contact one of our licensed Mortgage Loan Originators. If you are ready to begin the process, click here to get started!

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