No money, no home improvements

money11In a challenging housing market, homeowners might be expected to improve their homes rather than move. But new research carried out by OnePoll for AA Financial Services shows that many are being so careful with their money that they won’t make any home improvements until they have enough savings to fund the project.

The AA Financial Services findings show that one in ten are planning some changes to their home. The most popular is redecoration, which 42% say they’ll do. That’s followed by a new kitchen (27%), garden improvements (26%) and a new bathroom (25%).

Using savings is by far the most popular way of funding a project (47%), with money from a bank account a distant second (16%). The third most popular choice is to use a credit card, which just 7% say they’ll do.

Mark Huggins, director of AA Financial Services said: “Although times are tough, there are still people who want to ‘do up’ their home, and of course, making some home improvements is cheaper than moving.

“Although the improvements people are looking to make are considerably cheaper when compared to moving, you can never start saving too soon. Hopefully when you’re ready to make some bigger changes, or move, you’ll have enough put away to do so.

“Even though consumers are willing to use their savings to pay for home improvements it’s still a good idea to have some money set aside ‘just in case’.”

Mr Huggins added: “People seem to be most keen to pay with savings, which is likely because they’re being cautious. If you’re careful with your finances and take the time to look around you may find that there are other options available which fit your needs.”

The improvements people are planning are:

Choice %
Redecoration 42%
New kitchen 27%
New patio or garden improvements 26%
New bathroom 25%
New furniture 14%
New windows 13%
Bedroom revamp 13%
An extension 12%
A conservatory 11%
Loft conversion 6%
Flood resilience measures 3%
Conversion of an integral garage to make more living space 3%
Other 7%
None of the above 4%

What is the most likely way that you will pay for your home improvements?

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Choice %
Savings 47%
From money in bank account 16%
Pay for it on credit card and consolidate afterwards  7%
Cash in an investment    6%
Personal loan 6%
Use a low-interest money transfer card 4%
Mortgage extension 3%
Inheritance 2%
Retirement lump sum 1%
Other 2%
Don’t know 5%

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