Buy your home and fix it up – all with one loan |

Buy your home and fix it up – all with one loan

Sarah Davis

As many home shoppers learn, the best buy in town is often what real estate agents call a “fixer-upper” – a neglected house on an otherwise nice street, or an older home with lots of charm, but an impossibly ancient kitchen. When cash is tight, you may worry about whether you can afford the expense of renovation after you’ve closed your loan. One option to consider is a home improvement loan.

Home improvement loans, such as the FHA 203(k) loan, can make that real estate bargain even more attractive because they allow you to purchase a home, and improve it, with a single loan. The remodeling costs are built into the loan, and the loan amount is based on the “after-improved” value of the home. Among other repairs, home improvement loans may be used to finance a new roof, remodel a kitchen, or even replace drafty old windows and doors. Home improvement loans may also be used if you want to remodel your current home.

You can purchase your dream home with as little as three percent down using a home improvement loan. On 203(k) loans, FHA will also waive the usual mortgage insurance premium that is required at closing, reducing your out-of-pocket expenses. The program also offers you a variety of fixed or adjustable rate options.

So, when you see a great deal in the classifieds for a home requiring a little “TLC,” but wonder how you could afford to make it your dream home consider a home improvement loan. Before you know it, you’ll own a home and will be well on your way to your next major decision: what color of carpeting do I want?

Sarah Davis is the sales manager of the Avon office of Countrywide Home Loans, a national leader in residential finance. The office is located at 30 Benchmark Road, Suite 209, (970) 748-5018. Additional information about the company’s full array of products and services is available online at

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