How to afford a new kitchen or bathroom

Lifestyle Written by John Bolton, Aug 8 2018

It’s common knowledge that kitchens and bathrooms are amongst the fastest ways to add value to your home. But, let’s get real. Doing home improvements is about lifestyle and creating enjoyment in the spaces that you spend so much time in.

First up, the kitchen. Arguably the most important room in your house. It’s the heart and soul of your home and the place where family and friends inevitably end up gathering. In my home we eat most of our meals around the kitchen island and it’s the only time we all listen to each other!

When it comes to bathrooms, for most of us that’s about a little bit of luxury. Picture a rain dump shower head or a bath tub to soak away the day.

So here’s some tips to help you fast-track and afford your kitchen or bathroom project (and score some socialising brownie-points).

The smart way to finance it

If you haven’t worked with us before, at Squirrel, we’re awesome at getting you a better deal on your mortgage. Often there’s also some untapped gold in structuring your mortgage better to free up cash flow. 

A small renovation doesn’t need to hit you in the back pocket – in fact, in a lot of cases we can do it without it changing your monthly repayments at all.

If you haven’t looked at your mortgage for a while, then chances are with some tough negotiating we might be able to cover the cost of your kitchen or bathroom renovation. You see, getting 0.20% shaved off your mortgage rate will free up $1,000 a year of cash flow on a $500,000 home loan. That’s enough to borrow $15,000 without any change in your monthly mortgage repayments, and the extra lending paying itself off over 25 years.

It’s not exactly free, but what if you could fund a new kitchen or bathroom with no change in your monthly mortgage payments?

Borrowing money off your bank can be hard at the best of the times, and the best deal might mean needing to refinance. That’s why we’ve developed a personal loan designed especially for Homeowners. 

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Introducing the Homeowner's Loan

With a Homeowner’s Loan you can easily borrow up to $20,000 unsecured (or up to $70,000 with security). It’s the only peer-to-peer personal loan product in New Zealand with no fees. No establishment fees, no monthly fees and no exit fees.

It’s at a rate of 7.95% interest-only for the first 12-months. So borrowing $15,000 will only cost $100 per month for the first year. What does this all mean? It allows you to get your renovation underway with minimal effort. We can then help you to consolidate the loan back into your mortgage, hopefully on a better deal, and we can do it at a time that suits you.

A Homeowner’s Loan makes home improvements easy. And best of all, there’s no cost for us to renegotiate or refinance your mortgage. Our service as a mortgage broker is free.

If you don’t want to put the loan on your mortgage, it’ll convert to a principal and interest loan over a term of five years at the end of the first 12 months (or you can choose a term of up to seven years) and pay it off at a rate that suits you.   

Not everyone has the same needs. At Squirrel we’re all about making financing stuff as easy as possible, giving you the flexibility for how you want to pay it off, and making sure you get the best possible financial advice.

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Got questions about the Homeowner's Loan? We're happy to chat.