When you think about starting any home remodeling project, the first thing that might come to mind is, “How much is this going to cost me?” and “How can I pay for this?”
Whether you’re replacing your entire home siding, windows, or just want to upgrade your garage floor with an industrial concrete coating, any construction or addition to your home can be a hefty investment.
Just like when you buy a new car, there can be a lot of technical terms and reading the fine print that you must decipher before deciding how you will go about financing it.
Southwest Exteriors has been an exterior remodeling contractor in San Antonio for 32 years. Because we specialize in large-scale projects, we offer four different monthly payment options for your project to make it as least intimidating as possible.
We know that financing can be confusing and complicated sometimes which is why we want to make it as easy as possible for you. With any of our financing options, you are in the driver’s seat and get to choose your plan, rate, and timeline.
However, when you’re presented with multiple options and your mind is racing about how everything will work, you probably have dozens of questions scrambling around your head.
This article will answer the top 22 questions about our monthly payment plans and processes that our design consultants get every week.
After reading, you will know more about the details of your financing options, services, and how things work so you can feel more comfortable and confident going into your home remodeling project.
1. Are there any prepayment penalties?
There are no prepayment penalties if you finish paying your project off earlier than expected. Some outside financing companies or banks charge a prepayment penalty for paying your term early. This is because the bank is essentially losing money from the interest you would have paid for the rest of your term.
We don’t believe in that. If you pay your project off early, you’ll be rewarded with knowing your project is all taken care of, and you don’t have to worry about it anymore.
2. What is the maximum and minimum amount I can finance?
In most cases, the minimum amount you can finance for 0% rates is $1,000. For other low, fixed-interest rates, $3,000 is the minimum required.
The maximum you can finance is up to $100,000 with any rate and the opportunity to finance up to $160,000 if needed.
3. What information do I need to apply for financing?
You must provide:
Your first and last name.
Date of birth.
Valid driver’s license.
Valid and current income information for all applicants
If you have your driver’s license at your consultation, it can be scanned then and there to speed up the application process.
4. How long does it take to apply for financing?
It takes about 8-25 minutes to apply for any financing option. There are no application or inspection fees required.
5. When will I know that I am approved for financing?
It varies depending on the vendor; however, you will know you are approved almost instantly or within three minutes unless there are any gaps in your credit that must be looked into.
Gaps can include gaps in your purchase history, recent purchases, or bankruptcies. Even if there are any gaps, it will typically only take 10-15 minutes to sort out.
6. How long is the loan approval good for?
The loan approval time frame varies by vendor, however, the range can be anywhere from 90 days, 4-6 months, or even a year. This will be specified depending on the financing vendor you choose.
This means that once you are approved for your financing, you have an allotted time frame before you will have to apply again if you have not yet started making payments.
7. Do you have to pull my credit, and is it a hard pull?
Yes, we have to do a hard pull on your credit with every financing option we offer. This means that even if you don’t use the financing, it will show on your credit that you applied and your credit was looked into.
8. Can I apply for the loan and not use it if I don’t want to?
Absolutely. If you apply and get approved for a financing option then decide against it, you do not have to follow through with it. It will still show as a hard pull on your credit.
9. What companies do you use to finance?
We work with Credit Human, Service Finance Company, EnerBank, GreenSky, and CreditNovo.
CreditNovo is a solution for homeowners with lower credit scores that can have difficulty finding financing.
10. What kind of paperwork do I have to do?
To apply for financing, you have to fill out a simple application with the information listed in Question #3. From there, it is a check into your credit history, which requires no extra effort on your part.
Applying for this financing is similar to if you were to apply for a credit card.
11. When do my payments start?
This depends on the vendor as well, however, most payments start when your project is fully completed. In some cases, payments will start within 30-60 days after approval.
12. How do I make payments?
You can set up to make payments through a secure, online portal with the financing vendor you are approved for. You can set up bill payments or recurring payments on the portal. If you like to kick it old school, you can also mail your payment checks to the vendor office.
All payments are made directly to the vendor of your financing, not to Southwest Exteriors.
13. What does my credit score need to be?
For all financing vendors, except for CreditNovo, your credit can be as low as 650-680 to apply. CreditNovo is an option for homeowners with a credit score in the low to mid 600s. Sometimes, your credit can be even lower as long as there are no discrepancies that could compromise your credit.
14. Will there be a lien?
A lien is a legal claim to the assets financed under the loan if you fail to make payments. For all financing options, there is no lien.
15. Will my loan be sold to anyone else?
No. Your information and loan will stay with the financier you are approved for.
16. Do I pay a deposit before financing starts?
No, there is no deposit required before your financing payments start. The project in full is divided equally into monthly payments for the duration of your loan.
17. Can I put a cash deposit down, then finance the rest of my project?
Yes, you can put a cash amount done and finance the remaining balance of your project. We can always combine financing options to best fit your needs.
18. Do I get more of a discount if I pay for my project in cash?
Yes. You get a 23% discount on any portion of your project that is paid in cash. This means that the more you pay in cash for your project, the more your entire project will be discounted.
19. Do we have to use both incomes of the household to apply for financing?
With Service Finance, you do not have to use more than one income to apply for financing. With the other vendors, you have to apply with the income of all homeowners.
20. Do I have to pay any closing costs or appraisal fees?
No, you do not have to pay any fees with our financing options. When you finance through your bank, you typically have to pay multiple fees for appraisal and inspections.
21. Do I have to show anything to prove my income, or is it stated?
In most cases, you do not have to provide any proof of income to apply; it is stated in your credit history. It may be requested, but this happens very infrequently.
22. Can I add a second project to my loan once I am approved?
Once your financing has been approved for your project, you cannot change the amount or add on a secondary project. You will have to apply and get approved for another loan for your second project.
For example, if you are financing your window replacement project, then decide you want to replace your siding too, you’ll have to apply for a separate financing option from the windows.
How to choose the right financing option for you
Now that you know the answers to the most frequently asked questions about our financing options, you can better understand the terms and conditions of our monthly payment plans.
With Southwest Exteriors, you get to choose which option is best for you. We offer multiple 0% and low-interest rates from multiple financing companies to fit your needs best.
Choosing the right financing option for you all comes down to your comfort level in paying for your project.
If you want to pay for your project as fast as possible and are comfortable doing so, then you can choose an option to pay for your project in full or choose a low-interest financing rate for a short term.
If you know you want to pay for your project over an extended period of time or need a financing option to help with your credit score, then we have options for you too.
The biggest thing we want you to know is that you are in the driver’s seat of your project and your financing. We know that we are not the least expensive option on the market, but we want to be affordable for every homeowner and do not want the price tag to get in the way of making your dreams come true.