Securing A Personal Loan Is Easier And Faster
First, personal loans are generally easier and faster to get. Applying for a home equity loan requires a lot of paperwork as its similar to a mortgagein fact, youd better start gathering your past two years of financial documents if this type of loan is your first choice.
Most personal loans, on the other hand, will require only basic documentation to verify your identity and income. In addition, personal loan applicants typically receive a loan decision within days, as opposed to weeks. While the application process is not as fast as swiping a card, a personal loan helps you avoid the high fees and higher interest rates associated with credit card debt. For borrowers on a tight timeline looking to make home renovations, a personal loan can be the perfect solution.
Can A Home Improvement Loan Increase My Homes Value
Certain home improvements can add value to your home, such as by:
Increasing the square footage: A room addition that increases the size of your home can increase its value.
Cutting your energy bill: Installing double-pane windows and insulation or adding rooftop solar panels can help cut your energy bill which can add to your home’s value.
Keeping it modern: A well-maintained home can command a higher asking price, so home repairs and modern remodeling can also be a good investment.
Boosting curb appeal: Updating your landscaping or home exterior can make your home more attractive to prospective buyers.
Because of this, you could consider a home improvement loan as a way to potentially raise your homes value.
However, before you take out a home improvement loan, its important to consider how much that loan will cost you. This way, you can be prepared for any added expenses. You can estimate how much youll pay for a loan using ourpersonal loan calculator.
What Is A Home Equity Loan
A home equity loan, or second mortgage, leverages the money youve already paid towards your houseyour home equityas a guarantee to the lender that youll repay the loan offer. This is a type of secured loan, in this case, secured by your house, which the lender can seize should you fail to make your payments. Typically borrow up to 85% of their equity, and the loan is made for a fixed amount of money, in a lump sum.
Home equity loan terms tend to be around 15 years, but can range from five to 30 years. Rates for these loans currently hover around 5%, the average rate being 5.21% in early 2017. A home equity loan has similar interest rates as but is distinct from a home equity line of credit , which acts as a revolving line of credit rather than a one-time installment.
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If You Were Planning To Use Your Home Equity For Another Expense
Lastly, a personal loan might be a better choice if you were planning to tap your home equity for something else. Some families rely on their homes value to help pay for college education, while others might use a home equity loan to start a business or cover other liabilities. If this is the case, a personal loan could allow you to both make the necessary home improvements and leverage your homes equity for another purpose.
Types Of Home Improvement Loans
There are several kinds of loans you can use to make home improvements. The most common are:
- Personal loans: These unsecured loans, which are featured on this page, can be used for any purpose. Interest rates are based on your credit score, and you dont have to provide collateral. This may be a good option if you want to avoid using your home to secure a loan.
- Home equity loans: These are lump-sum loans that are often used for home-related projects and needs. Your home is used to secure the home equity loan. Because of this, you can usually expect a lower interest rate than with a personal loan, but if you miss payments, your home could face foreclosure.
- Home equity line of credit : A HELOC is a revolving line of credit secured by the equity in your home. You can take money out for home-related expenses as needed, rather than as a lump sum. Your home is used as collateral for a HELOC, and youll score lower interest rates because of it.
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How Can I Pay For Home Improvements
You have a variety of financing options to cover home improvement costs, including:
- Home equity line of credit . This is typically your least-expensive option, since it uses your home as collateral. You can withdraw from your credit line whenever you need to without taking more than you need. How much youre able to borrow depends on the equity you own in your home among other factors.
|Total loan cost||$10,729.13|
*The information in this example, including rates, fees and terms, is provided as a representative transaction. The actual cost of the product may vary depending on the retailer, the product specs and other factors.
Personal Loans Dont Require Equity In Your Home
Second, for those who bought a house recently and just paid closing costs, a personal loan may be your only option. As the name suggests, a home equity loan requires you to not just have good credit, but have equity in your homewhich you wont have until youve been paying your mortgage for some time. In pre-financial crisis days, home equity loans were given out readily based on your homes value, but it doesnt look like these practices will be coming back any time soon80% of home equity lenders did not report any changes in their underwriting criteria in 2016, meaning your chances of qualifying for home equity loan or home equity lines of credit without having paid a significant chunk of your mortgage are slim.
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What To Consider With Home Improvement Loans
If youre interested in getting a loan for home improvements, make sure you consider the following factors:
- Security. You need to have enough equity in your home to get a secured loan. Alternatively, you may be able to use a vehicle as security for the loan, such as your car, boat, RV or motorbike, providing the value of the vehicle is sufficient. You will usually need to own the vehicle outright. You can also apply for an unsecured loan, but you may be charged a higher annual percentage rate of interest .
- Interest rate. This is the amount of interest youll pay on the money youve borrowed for your home improvements. Secured loans tend to come with lower interest rates than unsecured loans because its less of a risk for the lender since youve put up collateral.
- Loan term. A longer loan term will give you lower ongoing repayments, but at the end of the loan term, you will have paid more in interest, making the loan more costly. In contrast, higher repayments and a shorter loan term help keep the overall cost of the loan down.
- Processing time. Some lenders can disburse your funds on the same day you apply or usually by the next business day. Other lenders may take seven to ten days to approve your application and disburse your loan funds.
Best For Veterans: Usaa
Only available to members of the armed forces, veterans, and their families, USAAs home improvement loans come with flexible term lengths and funding as soon as the next day.
USAA membership and bank account required
Low maximum loan amount
- Maximum/minimum amount you can borrow: $2,500 to $100,000
- : 7.24%18.51%
- Fees: No application fees or pre-payment penalties
- Minimum recommended credit score: It is reported that USAA accepts subprime borrowers with scores as low as 600, but no minimum credit score is disclosed on the website.
- Other qualification requirements: USAA membership
- Repayment terms: 12 to 84 months
- Time to receive funds: Within 24 hours to your USAA Bank account
- Restrictions: Open to residents in all 50 states. Only those who are USAA members with a USAA Bank account can receive a personal loan.
- Notes: Financing for 12- to 36-month term requires a loan amount of $2,500 or greater. Financing for 48-month term requires a loan amount of $5,000 or greater. Financing for 60-month term requires a loan amount of $10,000 or greater. Financing for 72-month term requires a loan amount of $15,000 or greater. Financing for 84-month term requires a loan amount of $20,000 or greater.
Read the full review: USAA Personal Loans
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How To Find The Best Home Improvement Loan Rates
To land the best home improvement rate, you can:
- Shop around: Not all lenders are created equal. Do your research and compare lenders so you can choose the ideal option for your budget and credit.
- Get prequalified: See if you prequalify for a loan with various lenders. This way, you can easily compare rates and terms.
- Get a co-signer: If you have less than stellar credit, a co-signer may make sense. They can help you secure a loan with an interest rate that you may not qualify for on your own.
- Improve your credit score: A higher credit score can lead to a lower rate. If your score is on the low side, work to improve it before you apply for a loan.
- Choose a shorter loan term: Generally speaking, the shorter loan term you choose, the lower rate youll receive. If you do go with a shorter term, make sure you can afford the monthly payments.
Unsecured Personal Loans For Home Improvements
Many personal loan lenders will advertise their loans as home improvement loans, as many consumers like to use personal loans to cover home improvement costs.
Most personal loans are unsecured loans, meaning they dont require any form of collateral. Instead, the lender determines your eligibility by reviewing your and income. Thats a significant benefit, according to Jacob Channel, senior economic analyst with LendingTree.
The biggest advantage is you can get cash relatively quickly, and you dont have to put down the house as collateral, says Channel. If you do default, the risk of losing your house isnt there. They can be a good option if you dont have equity yet, or have less-than-perfect credit since there are lenders that work with different credit levels.
Since unsecured loans are riskier for the lender than secured loans, they often come with higher interest rates and stricter qualification requirements. Borrowers with lower credit scores may find it hard to qualify for a personal loan at a reasonable interest rate. If thats the case, and you have an asset you can put up as collateral such as a house you may want to consider a secured loan instead.
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What Are The Risks Of Home Equity Loans
Home equity loans and HELOCs have a lot of advantages over other types of debt, like personal loans and . They have lower interest rates and generally more favorable terms. But those benefits exist because if you dont pay, the bank can take your house.
That risk always remains where youre using your house, but if used wisely and sensibly its a more cost-effective way versus borrowing unsecured, Gupta says.
Best Home Improvement Loans Of December 2021
Home improvement loans can help you finance repairs, renovations and additions to your home. Compare offers from multiple lenders to find the best rates and terms.
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An unsecured home improvement loan can help you pay for renovations and repairs. You can use this type of personal loan to upgrade your kitchen, put in a new swimming pool, or repair your roof.
Home improvement loans let you finance your renovation without using your home as collateral. They’re also usually funded more quickly than other financing options. Always compare offers from multiple lenders to find a loan that suits the size of your project and your budget.
Best Home Improvement Loans:
Best for large loans with low rates: SoFi
Best for low rates and long repayment terms: LightStream
Best for credit-building tools: Upgrade
Best for small loans with low rates: Marcus
Best for excellent-credit borrowers: Discover
Best for small loans with a co-borrower: Prosper
Best for existing customers: Wells Fargo.
Best Home Improvement Loans:
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Best For Bad Credit: Avant
Avant offers home improvement loans even to borrowers with less-than-stellar credit, and features an easy application process and quick funding.
Available to borrowers with poor credit
Administrative fee of up to 4.75%
Higher than average interest rates
Low maximum loan amount
- Maximum/minimum amount you can borrow: $2,000 to $35,000
- : 9.95%35.99%
- Fees: Administration fee may be as high as 4.75%. Late fee of $25 charged when a payment is 10 days past due. A $15 fee is assessed for returned payments.
- Minimum recommended credit score: Reported to be 580, but Avant states that most customers have a credit score between 600700.
- Other qualification requirements: In addition to your creditworthiness, Avant will consider your income and employment status when you apply for financing. You must submit proof an active personal checking or savings account. If self-employed, youll also need to submit your 2 most recent tax returns with your loan application.
- Repayment terms: 24 to 60 months
- Time to receive funds: Youll typically receive a direct deposit of your loan funds by the next business day
- Notes: The actual loan amount, term, and APR amount of loan a customer qualifies for may vary based on credit determination and state law. Minimum loan amounts vary by state. The minimum loan amount in MA is $6,400.
Read the full review: Avant Personal Loans
Taking Out A Home Improvement Loan
If you’re looking to make your DIY plans a reality our home improvement loans could help
You can get a personalised quote at the start of your online application and then decide if you want to take out a loan with us
You could get your loan funds on the same day if you apply online, are unconditionally accepted and sign your loan documents before 5.45pm Mon Fri. Sometimes we need to contact you for more information, so it can take a little longer
To apply for a loan online, you must be 18+ and a UK resident with a NatWest current account .
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How Do Home Improvement Loans Work
Though all 3 of these loans have different features, they also have something in common. If you qualify for financing, a lender will lend you the money you can use toward a home improvement or repair project. In exchange, youll repay the money you borrowed, along with interest and possibly fees, over time.
Many home improvement loans are reported to the 3 credit bureaus. Its important that you consistently make your payments on time if you want to protect your credit scores. And doing so can help them, of course.
Once you decide to borrow money for home improvements, there are numerous lenders who may be able to help you: online lenders, banks, and credit unions.
Should I Get A Home Improvement Loan Or A Construction Loan
Another potential option to cover home improvement costs is a construction loan. Heres how home improvement loans differ from construction loans as well as some pros and cons of each to keep in mind:
Home improvement loans
Personal loans can be used for almost any personal expense including home improvements. With a personal loan, you can typically borrow $600 to $100,000 or more and will have one to seven years to repay it, depending on the lender.
Additionally, most personal loans are unsecured, which means you dont have to worry about collateral. However, because this is riskier for lenders, youll generally need good to excellent credit to qualify.
Fixed rates: Personal loans come with fixed interest rates, which means your payments will stay the same throughout the life of the loan.
No down payment: Unlike other types of loans , home improvement loans dont require you to put any money down.
Variety of uses: You can use a personal loan for a wide variety of expenses in addition to home repairs.
Construction loans are typically available to potential homeowners who want to purchase land and immediately build a home on it. However, you might also be able to use this kind of loan to fund the construction that could come with home improvements this type of construction loan is often known as a renovation construction loan.
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Current Home Improvement Loan Rates
Average home improvement loan rates currently range from around 3 percent to 36 percent. While the rate you’re quoted depends on many factors, the most important is usually your credit score the higher your credit score, the lower your rate. Many lenders provide their minimum credit score requirements, as well as the credit score needed to receive the lowest rate. However, even if your score is closer to the minimum, it’s still worth going through prequalification, as lenders may also factor in things like your annual income, debt-to-income ratio and employment status when determining your rate.