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Home maintenance costs

A home maintenance schedule is vital to your house’s upkeep. Making regular checks on your exterior, appliances, heating and cooling, plumbing, security, and electrical systems will help prevent breakdowns. Unfortunately, home maintenance isn’t cheap and it would be wise to budget for it in advance.

This article will help you create a home maintenance checklist, plan and information on how to secure a loan to reduce the burden of home maintenance costs. This information will help ease the stress of home maintenance or renovations now and in the future.

Home maintenance costs guide

Budget for a house renovation

In some cases, certain appliances are beyond repair perhaps due to how old they are. In this case, rather than wasting your savings to make constant repairs it makes sense to just replace the appliance altogether. If you require renovations for multiple appliances you’re probably wondering, how much does house renovation cost?

The process is pretty much the same as making a budgeting for home maintenance checklist. The only difference would be that a remodel or replacing an appliance completely is more expensive than making repairs. However, considering that you’ll spend much less on monthly repairs for a new appliance it’s not a bad investment.

Average cost of home renovations

To keep it as simple as possible, let’s break down the costs of two major parts of your home i.e. the kitchen and bathroom. Experts recommend that your kitchen renovation should cost 5%-15% of the value of your home. However, it can cost anywhere between $15,000 to $50,000 based on the appliances you choose and the scale of the remodel.

Similarly, for a bathroom remodel you’ll need at least $15,000 for a standard renovation. Again the cost may vary based on the nature of the remodel. For example separating the shower from the bathtub can increase costs dramatically.

The bathroom and kitchen will likely make up the majority of your costs, as such be sure to budget for these first before adding on other minor renovation costs.

Secure financing for home renovations with Mortgage Maestro

Whether it be for home maintenance or renovations, not everyone has ready access to large sums of money. Even if you have spent a considerable amount of time making monthly deposits to your home maintenance fund, it still may not be enough. This is where Mortgage Maestro comes in.

We can help you secure a loan to help ease the financial burden of home maintenance. Our team of experienced agents will use Mortgage Maestro’s extensive network of banks and lenders to provide the best option for you.

Our advice is unbiased, contact us today and we can assign an agent to you immediately. Regardless of what you choose (bank or other lender) we can do the heavy lifting for you and provide you with options that best suit your home renovation or maintenance financial needs.

Monthly home maintenance checklist

Inspecting your home monthly will help keep your maintenance schedule on track. Listed below are a few examples of aspects of your home that may need a tune up.

  • Clean/replace the furnace filter: This helps remove dust build-up, makes it easier to regulate your home’s temperature and also help avoid overly expensive energy bills.
  • Clean faucet aerators and showerheads: It will help remove mineral deposits.
  • Inspect bathtubs, sink drains, dishwasher, and washing machine: Usually there’s a lot of blockage in these areas after extended use. As such you may want to unclog them if need be.
  • Test electrical appliances: Electrical items like smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors need to be tested periodically for your own safety.
  • Clean the garbage disposal: You can clean it by grinding ice cubes, then flushing it with hot water and baking soda.
  • Check hot water tank, windows and roof for leaks and wear: this can really save a lot of money and potential insurance claims, get a professional opinion every couple of years.

This list may vary depending on the structure and design of your home. However, in general these are the items you should look out for.

Maintenance costs

As a new homeowner, you’ll want to know how much home maintenance costs. You’ll have to factor in a lot of variables while making your calculation. The value, size, age, condition and location of your home will heavily influence your costs.

But the question remains, how much should you budget for home repairs and maintenance? The 1% rule of thumb is a good place to start.

The 1% rule of home maintenance

This involves putting aside 1% of your home’s tax assessed value for home maintenance. For example, if your home is worth $500,000, based on this rule you’d budget $5,000 annually for maintenance.

However, this rule may vary depending on your home. Factors like the age and condition of your home will dictate how much you should spend yearly. Similarly, homeowners often think 1% is too low and unrealistic when it comes to home repairs. They believe that setting aside 3%-5% makes for a more realistic estimate.

This rule isn’t meant to be taken directly at face value. It merely serves as a starting point for your budgeting plans. Realistically you’re likely to exceed this amount depending on the scale and nature of your maintenance plans.

Other alternatives to estimate your property maintenance costs

  • Square footage rule: This entails saving $2 per square foot of your home for maintenance and repair costs. For example, if your home is 2,500 square feet, then you would budget for 2,500 x $2 = $5,000 of maintenance costs. However this system doesn’t factor in the other variables that affect your cost. For example, you won’t need to deal with replacement costs for appliances in a newer home, regardless of how big or small it is in terms of square footage.
  • Individual approach: Sometimes it’s better to look at your own individual property and make the call yourself. Consider major features like your roof, siding, foundation, electrical and plumbing. Do your own research on replacement costs and document them on a timeline, these numbers will give you a baseline amount for regular home maintenance.

How to budget for home maintenance costs

Let’s say you’ve decided you need $1,000 for daily maintenance plus a $5,000 emergency fund for significant repairs and replacement costs annually. However, it is difficult to set aside an extra $6,000 in one go. It makes more sense to break down that amount into monthly deposits of $500 over 12 months.

Given that home maintenance is a recurring expense, you’ll need to have ready and easy access to at least a portion of your allocated funds. You could talk to a financial advisor about what types of savings accounts are easily liquidated if you need access to the funds, but earn you a good return on your money if you don’t need most of it for a few years. We can make an introduction to a financial advisor in your area if you don’t have your own.

Further reading