Home maintenance isn’t optional. Things break, no matter how good they seem now—and homebuyers and homeowners need to prepare for that inevitability. A surprise $1,000 expense is an easy way to ruin your month, but if you budget and prepare for upkeep, maintaining a home is easy.
We recommend that homeowners save about $250/month for home maintenance. This should cover all your routine upkeep, as well as those major repairs and replacements that could otherwise wipe out your short-term slush fund. Also, avoid the lowest bid. Check reviews and pay for quality. You’re going to be living in this home for a while—this isn’t the place to go cheap. Here’s where that $250/month will go:
It’s tempting to procrastinate on major home-improvement projects, especially the exterior ones you don’t see all the time. But the projects outside your home project it from wind, rain, snow, and sun. Procrastinating or skimping here will only lead to worse problems later.
- Roof Replacement: $15,000+ every 25–30 years
- Gutter Cleaning: $250 every year (or DIY)
- Painting: $5000-$10,000 every 7-10 years
- Caulking: $200 every year (or DIY)
There’s no universal expiration date for plumbing, heating, sewer, and electrical systems. Regular professional service and inspections will keep you abreast of any developing issues before you end up in a crisis situation.
- Water Heater: $1200+ every 12 years
- Furnace: $3500+ every 20-25 Years ($240 for yearly service)
- Ductless Heat Pump/Mini Split: $4,000
- Wall Heaters: $1,000 for every 12+ years
- Sewer Inspection/Scope: $250 every 5–7 years
- Sewer Line Flush: $300 as needed
- Refrigerator: $1300 every 12 years
- Oven/Range: $700 every 15 years
- Dishwasher: $600 every 12 years
- Washing Machine: $700 every 12 years
- Dryer: $600 every 12 years
- Caulking and Sealing: $150 yearly (bathroom and kitchen)
- Replacement: $5000+ every 15 years ($20/sq yard)
- Carpet Cleaning: $250 every year
- Floor Refinishing/Screening/Buffing: $4/sq ft
Properly maintaining your home will keep your house in good condition, both so you can sell it for its highest potential when it’s time to relocate and so you can enjoy living it. The satisfaction and smoothness of a well-maintained home is a reason for upkeep in its own right.
Any specific questions about home maintenance? Give us a call! Real estate isn’t just about buying and selling—it’s about making sure you have the best home-owning experience possible, too.