"Hero" Program and Financing Options

If you are wanting or needing to make some major home renovation moves, but you are concerned about how you will afford to finance the project, we can help. At Los Angeles Home Remodeling, we can assist you in qualifying for the "HERO" home energy efficiency financing program, or help you explore other financing options as well.

We understand it can be difficult to pay the full bill for a home remodeling undertaking upfront or within just days of job's completion. At L.A. Home Remodeling, we work with you to find a way to finance your project, as well as help you find ways to reduce costs and qualify for incentive programs and rebates.

To learn more or to discuss with us the HERO Program and other financing options, call us today at 424-369-4765.

What Is the "HERO" Program?

The HERO (Home Energy Renovation Opportunity) Program is run by PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) in both California and Missouri. The program is designed to get home owners the financing they need to make improvements to their home's energy and water efficiency levels, saving homeowner money and helping the environment.

The program involves repaying the loan through your property taxes, collected by the county you are in. Sometimes, the extra property tax assessment will transfer with the property to a new owner, should you opt to sell.

The HERO Program began in 2010 in Riverside County, CA, and today, around 85% of California homeowners have access to the program. Already, tens of thousands of homes in L.A. County alone have upgraded their efficiency under HERO financing program.

How Does the HERO Program Work?

If you qualify for the HERO Program, HERO will finance both the purchase and installation of various energy efficient products. HERO covers these costs 100%. Your repayment, as mentioned above, is simply added onto your property tax bill. 

Repayment is often done in a way similar to making mortgage payments, however, on a monthly basis. Plus, any interest you pay on the loan is often tax deductible.

To get approved for the HERO loan, you need at minimum of 10% equity in your home and cannot be delinquent on your property tax or mortgage bill. And you cannot be in bankruptcy.

You do not have to have a good credit score to get approved for HERO, but you do have to make the "right" kinds of upgrades. And note that it's perfectly find to make these improvements while planning to resell your home quickly afterwards, and have the HERO repayment transfer with the sold home (obviously, with full disclosure of that fact, and of the great efficiency level!, to the new homeowner.)

What specifically can qualify as a HERO-approved upgrade? Here is a partial list:

  • Solar panel installation and AC-to-DC solar-power inverters.
  • LED light fixtures, both indoor and outdoor.
  • New windows capable of saving you from 7% to 15% on your energy bill.
  • UV light filtering window films, which keep a lot of heat from entering your home.
  • New insulation products for your attic, walls, ceiling, basement, or crawl space.
  • A radiant barrier on your attic ceiling that will reflect away much radiant heat from the sun.
  • New vents and ventilation fans in your attic.
  • Stationery or retractable awnings and patio covers that keep heat out of your home.
  • Skylights because they will let in the sun's light, which means you'll use less "artificial" light.
  • Energy Star approved ceiling fans, mini-split air conditioners, high-efficiency furnaces, and other energy efficient appliances.
  • High-efficiency water heaters, instant hot water systems, and high-efficiency toilets, shower heads, and faucets.
  • Rain-catching and utilization systems, drip-water irrigation, and other products that reduce water waste while watering your lawn/landscaping.
  • Drought tolerant plants, artificial turf, and other landscaping choices that reduce water usage.

Other Financing Options

Besides HERO, we at Los Angeles Home Remodeling can help you explore other possible financing options.

We sometimes can provide in-house financing that will cover the full cost of all services rendered. The loan would typically require no collateral and have a very low, and unchanging, interest rate. Depending on your credit rating, we may even be able to offer a no-interest loan.

In-house financing from L.A. Home Remodeling can keep you from putting renovation expenses on your credit card or having to use equity in your house as collateral for a bank loan.

We may also be able to help you get approved for financing at a bank, however, and may even be able to convince the lender to give you a lower APR and an easier-to-handle installment plan.

There are ways available to most homeowners to get the financing they need to fund their home remodeling project. Few can just pay upfront in full, and you don't have to wait for years and years to get started. We can help you get the financing for your project, one way or another.

Estimating Costs

Estimating (and working to reduce) costs will save you money and will mean you need a smaller amount of financing, which also means you pay less interest.

It's important to understand what to expect as far as estimated costs of your project. Here below are some general guidelines to give you an idea.

The US average cost of a multiple room home remodeling project is a little under $40,000. Most projects range between $15,000 and $60,000. Smaller projects may cost less than $5,000, while high-end, larger projects can easily top $100,000.

Factors Affecting Cost

By using a single contractor to handle all aspects of your home remodeling project (L.A. Home Remodeling is capable of "doing it all"), you will save money, plus speed up the completion of your project. And we can also suggest to you options for reducing costs without compromising the quality of the finished product.

Materials and labor are the main costs involved, but there are also permits and other expenses that may arise. We can give you a free, upfront, accurate estimate of what it's all going to cost, which will allow you to plan and budget ahead.

The larger your project is, in terms of number of rooms and upgrades and square footage, the more it will cost. If an addition or extension is needed, foundation work is involved, or any walls need to be removed, moved, or installed, that drives up costs too (and demo work and debris removal also would be involved and add expense.) Removing load-bearing walls would cost more than removing non-load-bearing ones.

Where "Most of the Money Goes"

Basement remodeling is often relatively expensive since many basements are unfinished to begin with, and the same can be said of attic renovations that turn the attic into a usable room of the house. But, it's much cheaper to renovate existing space, on the other hand, than to add more space (plus you don't eat up square footage on your lot.)

Plumbing and electrical work can be costly if you are redoing large portions of your home's existing systems. But you can't avoid doing the necessary plumbing and electric work involved in a room upgrade, and if your existing systems are under-code, you need to bring them up to code.

Kitchens are the most popular rooms to renovate. The US average for a kitchen renovation is $20,000, with most projects in the range of $5,000 to $50,000. Cabinets account for around 25% of that expense, new appliances for some 15%, and counters for around 10%.

Bathrooms are the second most common type of renovation project, and for small rooms, they do tend to cost a bit, as much as $10,000. But it all depends on what kind of materials and products you use. And you can save money by refinishing tiles and tubs rather than replacing them and in a host of other ways. We at L.A. Home Remodeling know how to bring costs down to the minimum level that doesn't hurt the quality of outcome or prevent you from realizing your "vision" and being 100% satisfied with the results.

New appliances way be fully worthwhile, but the highest-end appliances will clearly be a major added expense. Stainless steel is beautiful, practical, and durable, but certainly adds more cost upfront. But for outdoor kitchens and barbecues, stainless steel is often the only viable alternative for appliances to prevent corrosion, which would damage your investment. And also consider the more efficient appliances will save you on your power bill, besides being more convenient and enjoyable to use.

HVAC upgrades, like installing new AC units, repairing, de-dusting, or insulating heat ducts, or putting in new insulation and vents adds substantial expense, but it saves you a lot too. And this is one of the key areas where you can qualify for the HERO Program or for various government incentive programs and rebates. So you have to consider the savings as well as the cost.

Finally, we mention that a new roof will certainly be a major investment. But it will last 20, 30, 40 years or more, depending on the type of material you choose. And you can't delay on getting new roofing or at least making roofing repairs if leakage is becoming an issue. That threatens to do water damage to your home's interior and cost you more than the new roof would alone.

Asphalt shingles are generally the cheapest roofing material upfront, though architectural shingles cost a bit more. Cedar or other wood shakes and steel/aluminum metal sheet roofs are mid-range. And tile or slate is high-end. But again, the more expensive materials pay off in the long run because they are more durable, so it's always a trade-off and it takes an assessment of each person's needs and preferences to come to a decision.

Some Final Thoughts on Home Renovation Financing

After you have decided exactly what kind of remodeling job you want to undertake, when to begin, and what kinds of materials and products you want to include, we will get you a detailed estimate that should be within 10% (usually closer) of the actual. And then you have the information you need to plan and budget.

Larger and older homes tend to cost more to upgrade, and it depends, of course, on how "high-end" you want to go with each element. But we at Los Angeles Home Remodeling can recommend you high-quality products at each level and help you understand where you can cut and where it's best not to. The final decisions are always yours, but we give you the benefit of our experience and work to help you to save money and still see your "home remodeling dreams come true."

Back to financing and the HERO Program. L.A. Home Remodeling has helped many other homeowners afford to begin their remodeling projects sooner rather than later. We can often provide financing in-house on very reasonable terms. But we can also use our "clout" as a well respected Los Angeles Area business to help you get a regular bank loan on good terms. 

We are familiar with the HERO Program down to the tiniest details, and we can help you plan your home upgrade in a way that gets you the maximum possible financing from HERO sources. And remember, HERO upgrades will also save you money on energy usage and water consumption, which will in turn lessen your carbon footprint and lower your water waste ratio.

Contact Us Today to Learn More About California's HERO Program and Home Remodeling Financing Options!

At Los Angeles Home Remodeling, we are fully familiar with the details of the "HERO" Program and of many other home remodeling financing options. We can help you find the best way to finance your upcoming renovation project.

Contact us today by calling 424-369-4765, and we will be happy to assist you.

We serve the whole Los Angeles Area and Southern California with top-tier home remodeling services, and we have been helping home and business owners get the financing they need for many years. We stand ready to do the same for you.

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