Your Quick Guide to Financing Home Improvements

House 4 min read

31 Oct 2019

Starting out with home improvements? Your visions of an ultra-modern wet room in place of your terracotta coloured bathrom probably haven't extended to the costs. But your plans should definitely include financing your home improvements. And for the first time home improver, you’ll likely need an outline or guide to the costs involved. Which is where our blog should come in handy!

When stasrting out, the first thing to do is to make a list of all your ideal home improvements. Then set yourself a budget. Next, see how many of those improvrments you can realistically afford – ( our blog should help with this one). You should then have a much clearer idea of how to finance your home improvements.

To make things a little easier, we’ve split the costs up depending on the objective of your home improvements. We look at the costs of improvements to benefit your quality of life, and improvements to boost the re-sale value of your home.

Financing home improvements (that benefit your quality of life)


Involved in this plan will probably be painting, new kitchen tiles, maybe a spruce-up of the bathroom. You might be prepared to roll up the sleeves and replace that terracotta bathroom sink yourself! Or you might have fully accepted your lack of DIY prowess and you’ll be calling in the experts.

To help with planning the financing home improvements in this category, we’ve taken a look at some of the likely costs below.

Paint: The humble tin of paint is one of the most affordable and effective ways to transform your home. Big brand names like Dulux are usually the first that spring to mind. Their luxury, washable Moda brand costs approx. €67.99 for a five litre tin. Farrow and Ball’s five litre tin will set you back €76 approx.

On the more reasonable end of the scale, Irish brand Fleetwood does a five litre Easyclean finish for €36.99. Their Sheen finish is €31.99 for two and a half litres. While ten litres of their Designers range (matt finish) is a very reasonable €45.99.

(All paints for interiors).

Paint brushes: Invest in good quality paint brushes. Believe us it will be worth it when you’re not spending your weekend trying to extract paint-brush bristles from your drying paint. Fleetwood’s Pro D paintbrush comes in at €13.99. The Fleetwood roller set costs approx. €15.99.

At the higher end of the scale, award-winning paint brush manufacturers Purdy have a set of three brushes for approx. €32. While a Purdy roller kit will start at around €50.

New tiles: As with the humble tin of paint, new tiles in your bathroom or kitchen can have a transformative effect. However, choosing the tiles can be one of life’s most difficult choices! Once you have a good idea of the costs it can make the decision a little easier. As a guide, 60 cm x 60 cm floor tiles range in price from €20 per square metre upwards. Wall tiles can start from €14 per square metre. An average 3 x 4 metre kitchen floor should cost approx. €500. This should include buying the tiles, grouting and trims plus fitting. Top tip: It’s always a good idea to take tile samples home and see them in the light of your kitchen or bathroom before purchasing.

Basic bathroom upgrade: You can bet that a lot of people will have a bathroom makeover at the top of their home improvements wish-list.  We talked to mechanical engineer, David Daly, (BA (Hons) Eng. Tech RP. MIPHE) of Advanced Technical Products about a bathroom upgrade. A quick and cost-effective makeover would include fitting some new tiles, a new toilet seat, vanity unit, new shower curtain/ screen and replacing the shower hose and head. You can expect to pay around €1,000 for all of this.

Handyman fees: With all the Youtube tutorials out there, you could save yourself some cash and learn how to lay those new tiles yourself. But chances are you won’t have the time or patience - and it might be easier to just call in the experts. The price of a handyman can vary from county to county. Hourly rates can also vary depending on the work involved. But a quick look at showed handymen advertising in various parts of the country for between €22 - €25 an hour. Websites such as can also have deals on handyman vouchers. A recent deal advertised eight hours work for €129.

You will definitely need to shop around and compare quotes and reviews before making your decision. You can also post your job on, see the offers coming in and compare prices at a glance. Easy!


Financing home improvements (to boost re-sale value of your home)

If you want to boost the re-sale value of your home, you’ll likely need professional help. Your plan might involve improving your home’s energy efficiency. Or carrying out large scale or structural repairs. You’re probably looking at a steep enough bill at the end of it all, so you’ll definitely want a plan in place for financing home improvements like this.

To help get you started, we’ve broken down some of the costs for you below.

Replacing a boiler: We talked to David in Advanced Technical Products again about replacing a boiler. He told us that the most important thing is to always consult an RGI registered installer. These contractors are certified and insured to carry out the job safely, and in accordance with the law. Looking at costs, a modern gas fired system condensing boiler will start at approx. €850. Expect to pay between €2,000 to € 3,000 for a supply and fit - depending on the location of your home. Hevac Ltd. or Heat Merchants Nationwide are stocks of various brands.

To save more energy, consider also fitting thermostatic rad valves and insulating you cylinder in the hot press to save more energy.

Full Bathroom Upgrade: We also asked David about a complete bathroom makeover. We looked at a full strip-out, insulating the outside walls and reinstating the stud partitions. You would need to hire a builder or bathroom make-over company to carry out this out. The quality of the work is all-important on a project like this. Expect to spend upwards of €6,000 for a complete job - depending on finishes and sanitary ware. Davies and Tubs and Tiles have extensive bathroom showrooms nationwide.

New kitchen appliances: You’ll likely need to upgrade at least one kitchen appliance if you are working towards boosting the re-sale value of your home. Let’s take a look at the cost of a new fridge, oven and washing machine. Integrated fridge freezers start from €399. If you’re going for the American style fridge-freezer, these start from €479. Electric cooker-oven starts from €229. (All prices are

Top tip: Don’t be tempted to go for store credit when buying your new appliances. The interest rates are generally extremely high. A home improvement loan will work out a lot more cost effective for you. And if you go for a credit union home improvement loan, you’ll also have a lot more flexibility with structuring repayments etc.

We’ve answered all of your FAQs on credit union home improvements here.

While this blog includes information on discounted credit union loan interest rates.

You can click here for information on how to apply for a home improvement loan.


Or Submit an Online Loan Enquiry