SmartMoney Monday: Renovating vs. New Construction

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Whether you're renovating or doing new construction, you need to do your homework. In Today's SmartMoney Monday, we are going to discuss financing for either renovating your home or tearing it down and building new construction.

If you're considering renovating your home or tearing it down and starting from scratch, knowing your budget is a key first step. You'll want to meet with a loan professional to find how much you have available for what you're planning to do. You'll also want to meet with either a designer or architect to talk about what you want to do and the best way to do that.

Once those are lined up, you will also need a contractor.  To help ease the stress of finding the right one, talk with an experienced contractor who specializes in the type of project you want to do.  There are a few ways to know if you've selected the right contractor or if they're qualified. Ask for referrals from friends and family who have recently completed a renovation or built a new home within the last 2 years, and talk to them about their experience. You can also ask to see their work. Ask about their experience working with the contractor or architect. Would they work with them again? Their answers should give you a good idea of whether this is a person you want to work with.  Also, check the Better Business Bureau and the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs for licensing information or if any complaints have been filed.

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