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Webado Webada

@goldhillcole, A contractor like any merchant has to pay a fee to the credit card company. Anywhere from 1-3% usually, depending on the credit card and the volume of business the merchant does with that credit card. For this (and other reasons) a merchant may not even have an account with a particular credit card anyway. For example not many merchants have an account with American Express which charges probably the highest fees (in addition to charging fees to their card holders). Why, even Costco stopped using Amex and switched to Capital One Mastercard.


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Webado Webada

@decodencervr3, "financing such as FHA203k" must be an option available in the US only. We used to have similar programs in Canada for first time home buyers, usually less expensive homes, but they've been discontinued long ago, especially when the cut-off for the home prices became totally unrealistic. Also one had to have contributed to the fund.

In Canada, various provinces and municipalities occasionally offer incentives for certain types of renovations (e.g. 20% reimbursement), but one has to stay on top of the news about those programs which are usually short-lived. The renos one does may or may not fit the criteria. Everything we've done never fitted those criteria. Also the particular contractor used may ultimately charge a lot more if the work is part of one of those programs. We renovated our kitchen but since we didn't rip everything off that was never an option. We redid our landscaping but again it was not part of any government program. I believe if we changed windows and doors with energy efficient ones we'd get a (rather small) subsidy, lower than what we may negotiate as discount. Ditto for replacing the heating system.

I have to conclude that these programs are more an initiative to drum up business for the contractors rather than to actually help homeowners.

   
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cleansc

The article is missing one large method of payment. Insurance payouts. I've read countless articles right here on Houzz that mention a busted pipe lead to a new kitchen, bathroom, etc, after the home insurance paid up for damages. If you're a good DIY type, that kind of payout can go a LONG way in your house.

   
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