Financial Planning: Turn Your House into a Home

You don't have a home just because you live in a house. Turning your house into a home requires serious thought about financial planning.

I've hired cross-country movers and this is the second long-distance move in less than a year. I lived in the same house for seven years. Then, I abruptly changed location twice. One of the things that has become very clear is that your personality makes a home. However, adding that personality can sometimes wreak havoc with your finances if you don't plan.

home remodel and financial planning

The Finances of Major Remodeling

My parents have been updating their house over the last year or two. My parents recently remodeled their kitchen. With their pool of grandchildren growing, and in-laws being added to the picture, my parents wanted more space. Plus, the kitchen was outdated, and the lighting was somewhat poor. Thanks to the remodel, the kitchen and dining areas have been combined and the resulting room has greater openness and light. This is perfect for family gatherings—especially since in our family a lot of the action takes place in the kitchen/dining area.

These remodeling projects require planning in your finances, however. According to HomeAdvisor, it costs, on average, more than $19,000 to remodel a kitchen. Even at the low end of the spectrum, it can cost around $5,000. Even if all you do is replace the countertops or switch out the cupboards, you might still need a pretty sizable chunk of change. This means planning ahead and putting yourself on a savings plan so that you can pay for your remodel in a manageable way—without going overboard and ending up with too much debt.

Lessening the Pain

However, your remodeling project doesn't have to be a money drain. You can actually use your major remodeling purchases to help you later if you pay for them using a rewards credit card. I regularly use credit card rewards as part of my overall spending plan, and that includes using planned major purchases to earn points that can be used for other purchases down the road.

There are a number of credit card reward programs that can help you reach further goals when you use them in tandem with your remodeling project. For example, every purchase made with the BuyPower Card from Capital One can translate into savings toward a new GM vehicle, such as Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, or Cadillac. If you know you'll be in the market for a new car in the future, BuyPower is a great choice. It accelerates savings by offering cardholders 5% earnings on their first $5,000 of purchases each year and unlimited 2% earnings for the rest of the year.

never own a home

Tighter Finances = Smaller Projects

You don't have to spend a lot of money to make your house a home, though. Putting souvenir travel magnets on the refrigerator helps when we move. Small touches, like getting new fresh flowers every week or putting up pictures of your family, can also help. Just make sure you consult your partner if you have one. According to a recent survey on home trends from Capital One, 69% of respondents wouldn't let a significant other redecorate a room on their own.

What about furniture costs?

Because my most recent move was prompted by divorce, I'm looking to replace some of the furniture my ex took. (I don't have to worry about placating a significant other as I redecorate my life.) However, I want my son to feel invested in the new place, so we are trying to figure out what we want to do to create a look for our new house—a look that will turn it into a home. In order to save up for these purchases, I've been letting my Digit account grow. It won't be huge, but it will amount to about $2,000 when we're ready to start buying items for the new place.

We've been looking at different options and considering how to establish a home without wrecking our finances (even temporarily). We're off to a good start so far, and with the help of a credit card rewards program, our purchases will benefit us later.

Do you have any tips for redecorating on a budget? How do you turn your house into a home?

Thank you Capital One for sponsoring this post! This is a paid endorsement. All opinions are my own and were not directed by Capital One. To learn more about the BuyPower Card from Capital One visit

2 thoughts on “Financial Planning: Turn Your House into a Home”

  1. Abigail @ipickuppennies

    So many things go wrong with our older house that we don’t have much of a budget for actual redecorating. So one of my favorite ways to spruce things up is with some paint.

    If a dresser is looking worn, a $12 can of paint can easily make it pop again.

    Can’t afford nicer cupboards? We couldn’t, so I painted. The dingy beige got painted white, looking instantly better. Then I painted the cupboard doors black and dry brushed bright green over it. (Bonus: I only had to buy a sample size of the green.)

    I did add new cabinet pulls, which upped the cost. But they (in my not-so-humble opinion) look awesome and unique. And the project was still under $150.

    1. I love that a little creativity and a $150 in the right places can brighten the place and make old things seem new again.

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