Dave Ramsey says: Some things aren’t worth the second mortgage

Jul 4, 2023, 1:00 PM

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Dear Dave,

My husband was recently told layoffs are about to happen at his company, and that it might be a good idea for him to start looking for another job. He has found a couple of good possibilities, but the jobs are located about 100 miles away. In preparation for a possible move, we spoke with a real estate agent who told us we’d have to remodel our kitchen to sell the house. We’ve got about $4,000 in savings, but the agent said remodeling would take between $2,500 and $3,000. Should we get a second mortgage to pay for the work?


Dear Natalie,

For starters, I’d suggest cutting expenses any way you can, living on a strict budget and saving as much cash as possible. But taking out a second mortgage? No! You don’t want that hanging over your heads.

You might want to get another opinion on the kitchen remodel, too. Sure, a new kitchen would be nice, but would it be a make-or-break kind of thing if you decide to sell your home? Probably not, unless it’s in really terrible shape right now. Regardless, there’s no way I’d go into debt to make this happen. I mean, your house isn’t even on the market yet. There’s no reason to fix up a house that’s not for sale, especially when you’ve got just $4,000 to your names.

My advice is to wait and see how the whole job situation plays out before you make any big decisions. Then if you end up selling the house and moving, you might take $500 or so from savings to freshen up the kitchen a little bit.

— Dave


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Dave Ramsey says: Some things aren’t worth the second mortgage