Homeownership has many benefits and can bring a lot of joy. It’s relaxing to sit on the front porch and enjoy a quiet neighborhood evening or to cookout on the deck and share a meal with friends and family. However, with ownership comes responsibility and a list of ongoing home maintenance tasks that can’t be ignored.
We’re looking at home maintenance tasks that usually need to be done by professionals. These can range from roof repairs to HVAC issues and gutter cleaning. Ignoring or postponing these tasks can create time-consuming and expensive problems in the future. To help you stay on track, we’ve got our four top tips on how to budget for essential home maintenance services.
1. Set Aside Funds Monthly
The average annual maintenance and repair costs for a homeowner can hit nearly $3,000, according to ROCKET Homes. However, this number may be higher if you need a roof replacement or a new HVAC system. Regular maintenance and repair (not emergency or full replacements) can include:
- Window, gutter, and chimney cleaning
- Pest removal/control
- Plumbing problems
- HVAC issues
- Water damage
- Septic tank inspection/cleaning
- Minor roof repairs due to hail or wind damage
- Landscaping, lawn care, and snow removal
To help stay on budget, consider creating a separate account specifically for these tasks. Auto-deposit makes saving easier and you’ll be less likely to skip a month. Generally, it’s recommended to save about one to three percent of your total home cost each year.
2. Create a Timeline for Tasks
Savings and a budget help cover the costs while a timeline works to help keep you on track, so important home maintenance repairs and tasks are not lost in the shuffle of busy lives. Some tasks only come around once a year, while others may need to be done twice, and still, others only need to be addressed if an issue arises.
For most homes, general maintenance includes an annual visit from a certified chimney sweep and an annual septic tank inspection and cleaning. Everyone has windows and gutters which need to be cleaned by professionals at least twice a year. Some gutters may need a third cleaning if the property has a lot of trees.
3. Embrace Energy Conservation
Making your home more energy-efficient can help save money that can be added to a home maintenance fund. Simple changes like switching to energy-efficient bulbs and light fixtures can save about $225 in energy costs per year, according to Energy.gov, because lighting accounts for about fifteen percent of a home’s electricity usage.
Consider energy-efficient appliances when replacing old ones, install a programmable smart thermostat, supplement electric heating with a wood-burning stove or fireplace, and consider renewable energy sources like solar power.
4. Invest in Predictive Maintenance
Predictive maintenance can reveal potential problems before a complete failure occurs. When an air conditioner stops running on a 100-degree day, it’s the worst. Emergency repairs are expensive. Having the unit inspected yearly will come with a service charge, but issues are more likely to be found before a total breakdown happens. This is also true for things like your fireplace, septic tank, and water heater.
Budgeting funds for home maintenance services can make a difference. It’s a stress-reliever to know when it’s time to schedule your HVAC inspection or gutter cleaning, you don’t have to break the bank. And if you’re ready to schedule your gutter or window cleaning, we’re here to get the job done so you can cross it off your list.