Before and After Renovations

Before and after: a RenoFi-powered renovation in Iowa

See how this entire first floor transformed with a RenoFi Loan.

Original Home

  • Location: Bettendorf, IA
  • Built in 1954
  • Roughly 5,662 sq. ft.
  • 5 beds, 3.5 baths
  • Total renovation cost: $170,000

Original value:


The Renovation

  • Full home remodel
  • Floors and paint throughout the home
  • Home office, mudroom, bathroom, fireplace, master bedroom
  • Master bedroom, playroom, sunroom, kitchen
  • New electric, HVAC and plumbing

After renovation value:


Michael and his wife Jenna picked their home for the awesome neighborhood, unique properties, and the ample space: 1.7 acres of wooded area. 

They always knew they would want to renovate, it was just about waiting until they were financially ready. 

Luckily, a RenoFi Loan allowed them to complete a renovation three years after they moved in, and even tackle everything on their wishlist. 

Read more about the project below.

The project



Michael and Jenna’s project included the following:

  • Entryway
  • Home office
  • Mudroom
  • New fireplace
  • Kitchen
  • Master bedroom
  • Main bathroom
  • Painting
  • Flooring
  • Lighting
  • Half bathroom



Like many people during the pandemic, Michael and Jenna wanted to create space for a new mudroom with a bathroom in their home, as well as a home office. At the same time, they also updated the flooring, painting, lighting, and cabinetry on the first floor.

They chose to connect their mudroom to their kitchen area, with a pantry in between. The mudroom allowed space for more storage and a place to shed shoes and coats from outside.

They also chose a new hardwood flooring for their first floor to replace the mixed carpet and style that existed previously, to give the home a more modern look.

For the master bedroom, Michael and Jenna went with new custom cabinets around the bed for additional storage, as well as increased space in their walk-in closet.



The main bathroom got extended in size, a new vanity, a walk-in shower, and increased lighting and ventilation. 

“I think it looks good,” says Michael. “I think they did a great job. And I think the vision that my wife and I had for what we were looking for, I think they got pretty darn close.”

The problem

While Michael and Jenna didn’t have any major issues with their home before the renovation, they knew as soon as they picked it that it definitely needed some upgrades.

“Most of the interior was pretty outdated and probably hadn’t been renovated or updated in a very long time, probably not since the 80s,” says Michael. “So there was a lot of work to be done, just to make it more to our liking.”

However, Michael and Jenna loved the area so much that they knew three years ago that this was the house for them.



“Its location is central in the area where we live, and the highway is very close for me to go to work,” says Michael. “It’s in a pretty old neighborhood where the lots are a bit bigger than the newer sort of cookie-cutter, model neighborhoods.”

Not to mention, they have a lot of space!

“We have 1.7 acres around our home, and it’s wooded, and so it’s great to go for my son to go play out in the woods,” says Michael. Finally, “There’s no HOA. They’re kind of a nightmare, dealing with them in the past when I wanted to do certain things in my yard.”

Overall, this was a great home option for Michael and Jenna when they were house hunting three years ago. All it needed was a renovation, and that’s where RenoFi came into play.

The financing

Michael and Jenna knew that the project they were looking to complete was going to be big, so Michael began researching loan options.


He started with Chase, his normal bank, but realized that he wasn’t getting very far. “The process, at least, preliminarily checking with them was gonna take a while,” says Michael. “I just sort of began searching. I think I found [RenoFi] through Google.”

Michael didn’t end up pursuing other loan options through Chase or another bank, as soon as he spoke with a RenoFi Advisor on the phone, he was hooked.

“It was pretty intuitive and not too difficult to fill out the forms online and get things scanned in and sent in,” says Michael. “Filling out the forms for RenoFi seemed to go relatively quickly. And then ultimately ended up working with Quorum for the line of credit.”

Michael noted that RenoFi helped a lot with the financing process, because there aren’t a lot of options out there.

“There aren’t many other companies or banks that do renovation-specific loans. You can get loans for a lot of different reasons, but a renovation-specific loan, there aren’t really any of those. With Coronavirus, RenoFi helped mediate that process.”

The advice


Michael and his wife Jenna learned a lot through their first major home renovation project, and have a couple pieces of advice for any other homeowners planning on doing the same thing.

Create a timeline

“Come up with a timeline in your head of when you’d like for it to ultimately get started,” says Michael. “Base your decisions about when to start applying for a loan on that timeline, because it does take a bit of time for all the paperwork and approvals to go through. And all that needs to take place before the contractor actually comes in and starts to work.”


Collect design ideas

“If you’re not working with an interior designer, if you’re planning to work with the contractor on decisions, make sure to have a lot of ideas, either pinned on Pinterest or saved in files that you can go through with the contractor,” says Michael. “I know that we had a bunch of examples. We had tons of different home magazines and architectural stuff that we went over with him so that he could either find the same thing or find something comparable to it. It will make things go a lot faster if your contractor knows exactly what you’re going for.”


Be patient

“Be patient on the estimates and also the timeline of when they start and finish,” says Michael. “Those have to be flexible, because those things typically never stay true to the initial plan. They always end up changing a little bit here and there. So, understanding flexibility and when there are shortages of things and things are back-ordered.”


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