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Is it time to repaint your home? Is your kitchen or bathroom showing its age? Does your chimney need to be shored up before you use your fireplace this winter?

Nationwide, home renovation professionals are reporting unusually long wait times for new cabinets, windows, roofing materials and even appliances. Projects that used to take two weeks to go from an initial concept to being fully finished can now take six weeks or more. And a lot of that time is waiting for materials.

For homeowners, that means that if you’re thinking about renovating your kitchen or bathroom, adding a deck or doing something else to your home this fall, you need to start planning and preparing now.

Here are five things you should do now if you’re planning any home project — big or small — for this fall!

Set up a budget. In addition to the delays in getting materials, some construction items (including the basics, like wood) are more expensive than they were a year ago. Get a few estimates and check prices so you know how much you could be paying for your project. Need assistance? CommonWealth One can help you figure out how you could use the equity in your home to fund your projects. Register for our free webinar coming up this week on mortgage refinancing to learn more about all the ways you can finance a renovation at cofcu.org/events.

Know what you want to end up with! Having a really clear vision for your desired outcome will help ensure that you get the results you want without overspending. Go through home magazines and websites to get inspiration ideas and talk to your contractor or interior designer about how to make it happen!

Set up an organizational system for the project. Chances are, you’ll end up with a lot of paperwork including receipts, contracts, samples, business cards and more. Set up a file folder or commit to scanning every piece of paper related to the project to save on your computer. The information might come in handy in a few months if you need to contact someone again.

Identify how you will live while work is being done. Whether it’s a small paint job or a big kitchen re-do, work in your home can be disruptive. If you’re working from your dining room table, you may need to move your “office” to another part of the house to avoid noise and dust. If you are renovating a kitchen, you’ll want to stock up on food that does not need to be cooked. Think about what you need to do to live in a work zone and don’t forget to consider how it affects your budget!

Keep it clean. Before work starts, you’ll want to talk to the people working on your house about construction dust. Do you need to roll up your rugs or put up plastic sheeting so drywall dust doesn’t get everywhere? What about things like doing dishes during your kitchen renovation – do you need to put a drying rack in the bathroom? These types of preparations can save you from headaches later on.

We wish you the best with your home renovation, whether it’s a new coat of paint or a whole new home! And, of course, if you need help with funding, we are ready and eager to help with both home equity loan and mortgage loan options.

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