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home improvement Credit cards were the most affordable of the five financing options (credit: Credit.com).

HOUSTON—With Houstonians needing to make nearly $51,000 to afford a home valued at $142,000, it is likely that many of these homeowners are part of the great majority of Americans plunking down credit cards, payday loans, peer-to-peer lending, and even personal loans through friends and family to pay for home improvements. In fact, during the past 12 months, 5.41 million Americans borrowed an estimated $16.16 billion for home improvements, with the average loan amount being $2,990, according to Finder.

The majority (46.3%) are inserting plastic to pick up the home improvement tab, followed by personal loans (25.9%), borrowing from friends and family (16.7%), peer-to-peer lending (7.4%) and short-term loans (3.7%). In addition to the survey, Finder analyzed which of the five financing options might be more affordable at the end of the day, revealing that credit cards were the most affordable of the five financing options, with total interest paid during the life of the loan being $297.27 at an average interest rate of 18.62%.

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Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown is an editor for the south and west regions of GlobeSt.com. She has 25-plus years of real estate experience, with a regional PR role at Grubb & Ellis and a national communications position at MMI. Brown also spent 10 years as executive director at NAIOP San Francisco Bay Area chapter, where she led the organization to achieving its first national award honors and recognition on Capitol Hill. She has written extensively on commercial real estate topics and edited numerous pieces on the subject.

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