Redecorating your home just the way you want it can be expensive work. You have an idea of how you’ll upgrade your space, but these plans can go out the window when you walk into hardware and furniture stores. You come in for a new couch to replace the old, saggy one and boom, before you know it, you’re walking out with new flooring, paint, and drapes. 

When you shop like this, it’s easy to get halfway through your reno and come up short. To make up the difference, you might consider borrowing an installment loan online.

But should you? 

Online Loans Are for Unexpected Emergencies

According to the lending experts at MoneyKey, an installment loan has a specific purpose in your budget. They act as safety net when something goes unexpectedly and unavoidably wrong. 

An installment loan, like any loan or line of credit, comes with rates and fees. Although these charges are normal additions to any borrowing arrangement, they do up the price of your loan. 

If you take out a loan online to cover a renovation, you’ll pay for the flat cost of your work plus these charges. As a result, your reno will cost you more this way than if you paid out of pocket. 

These fees are why you shouldn’t use an installment loan for cosmetic renovations. 

What is an Unexpected Household Emergency?

After more than a year hunkered down at home during the pandemic, you’re probably more than a little sick of the four walls of your living room. It might seem like switching up your décor is an emergency. But this unnecessary upgrade is a want that you could delay without any harm. 

Emergencies are essential purchases that must be made right away to protect the safety of your home. And while every homeowner can expect to budget for ongoing repairs, sometimes issues surprise you. 

Let’s say you wake up to find your chimney’s leaking, and the cost to repair the facing is more than you have saved. You might consider taking out an installment loan online to prevent any more water damage to your home. 

How to Handle Costly Renovations

With an installment loan off the table, does that mean you have to postpone your cosmetic reno, too?

In some cases, yes. The best way to afford an unnecessary expense like décor is through methodical saving. Every month, you can put aside a little bit of cash until you have what it takes to refresh your living room.

As you generate the funds you need, you can also reduce what you pay on materials, tools, furniture, and labor. Here are some ways you can do that:

  • Rent items from a tool library so you don’t have to pay full price for equipment.
  • Consider the barter system — trading for goods and services is still a thriving economy.
  • Visit reused furniture and charity shops, including Habitat for Humanity’s ReStores for discounted furniture, materials, and more.
  • Use apps and browser extensions to locate discounts and coupons on supplies.
  • Take a do-it-yourself approach when it’s safe to do so.

Bottom Line

When an installment loan is for unexpected emergencies, it may not be the right option for your décor. But there are other ways to stretch your budget. Consider the tips you learned here today the next time you want to refresh your space, keeping online loans for true emergencies.