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Budgeting for Home Repairs: A Must for All Homeowners


Already done with the paperwork, paid up your mortgage, insurance and taxes? That’s a great step towards owning your dream home. Unfortunately, this is just the beginning of your expenditures.

Most people forget that owning a home comes with costs attached to it. You are responsible for anything that happens to your property, including repairs, upgrades and modifications.

Such projects dig deep into your pockets, and into unwarranted expenditure.

How Much Do You Save for Home Repairs?

Research suggests that putting aside a minimum of 1% of your total home purchase price every year should bolster your savings for home repairs.

Nonetheless, as time goes by, homes require more and more repairs and upgrades, therefore, 2% to 4% of your home purchase price could do.

For example; put aside 1% of your total home purchase price every year for a house less than 10 years old.

If the house cost $450,000, this translates to $4,500 each year, $375 per month. Also, put aside 2% to 4% for houses older than 15 years from the time of purchase.

Fortunately, some newly purchased homes have system maintenance warranties during the first few years.

You will undoubtedly feel the need not to, but the feeling should not deter you from saving for repair costs.

The 1% to 4% savings rule is however not constant. To better forecast on total monthly repair costs, it is important to review inspection reports every now and then.

Your inspection report will offer clear guidelines to how much is needed in repairs each month and what items need replacing.

Why Budgeting for Home Repairs Is Important

Budgeting has always been the ultimate strategy governing our spending habits.

It is the surest way to manage available funds and at the same time, getting you out of debt. In fact, it can help you to avoid taking unnecessary loans.

Yes, taking some affordable loans from service like may be important in some areas, but a budget will help you make informed decisions.

Fortunately, it is also important in managing home repair costs.

Picture this; what do you do when you wake up one morning to a leaking roof, or a broken sink, plumbing issues and a toilet that does not flush?

The most immediate response is to call in for repairs. Without some extra savings, you are likely to dig into funds intended for other purposes.

Major Repairs Bound to Cost a Fortune


Roofing material

Did you know that it takes an average of 25 years for roofs to wear out regardless of the roofing material used?

Replacing worn out roofing material is one of the most costly activities that need serious budgeting. A leaking roof is bound to cause a lot of interior damage that will eventually bite off a huge chunk from your savings.

A recent analysis from Angie’s List showed that members contributed an average of $12,000 in roof replacement costs in 2014.

Even DIY (Do It Yourself) homeowners incurred average costs between $3000 and $5000 while homeowners who opted to hire professionals incurred costs between $6000 and $13000, depending on their respective house sizes.


One of the most common repair practice is window replacement.

Remember when kids broke your window from a baseball? 

Minor accidents occur severally throughout the year and we are forced to replace broken window panes or even the entire window when we least expected.

Regular replacement can cost up to $350 for each window, with installation costs inclusive. A working house repair savings scheme can seamlessly settle this bill for you.

Heating and Cooling equipment

Who wants to spend cold nights with a broken HVAC unit? It can be frustrating snuggling up in bed under a dozen blankets and still feel that abrasive cold.

Repairs for air conditioning can cost up to $300 and a furnace repair can cost you $250.

A new air conditioning system can bite off $5500 from your personal savings while a furnace system can cost you $4000.

It is important to regularly run maintenance and repairs for your heating equipment, otherwise, you might be faced with the need to purchase a new set.

Don’t forget that regular repair and maintenance can save you from heightened electricity bills.

What Should You Do to Avoid Unnecessary Budgeting Mistakes?


Be as detailed as possible

One of the most heart throbbing mistakes new homeowners make is having an under-detailed budget plan.

They tend to draft a budget that includes major upgrades such as painting, woodwork, flooring and worktops but forget the nitty gritty such as faucets and knobs.

When drafting your budget plan for the first time, it is easy to forget a few extra fees, for example, material shipping costs.

To avoid such costly errors, it is important to revise and update your plan from time to time.

Research and consult

When drafting a budgeting plan, you will have identified the type and cost of material you desire to use.

Do not jumpstart repairs before consulting professionals. Your local architecture and contractor will play an important role in designing the most suitable plan for your repairs to follow.

Also, a professional contractor will be able to identify hidden costs which you might have missed out when drafting your budgeting plan.

Avoid DIY (Do It Yourself) repairs

That’s right… avoid DIY repairs. Doing repairs yourself might seem like the way to go, because of the reduced costs.

But did you know that errors that may arise might cost you more than hiring a professional to do the job for you?

Also, some home repairs strictly require a professional. For example, electrical repairs should only be done by experienced personnel.

Basement repairs are one of the easiest to work on and most homeowners prefer doing such repairs on their own.

Unfortunately, basement renovations are one of the most dangerous repair activities especially when not done right. Irregular underpinning can collapse your home, therefore you should consider calling experienced personnel.

Miscellaneous expenses

Regardless of the amount of research and consultation put in, repair and maintenance are bound to include extra amounts not accounted in the budgeting plan.

Before you begin running repairs, it is important to spare at least 4% of your total budgeting costs for miscellaneous expenses.

Sometimes you might consider making a few changes mid-way through repairs. These changes may not be included in your budgeting plan but are necessary, or they may have been left out during the initial planning stages.

For example, you might consider installing an additional window or tiling your kitchen halfway through the renovation.

Miscellaneous costs will effortlessly cater for such off-budget custom changes.

Final tips

Basically, consider observing the following tips in order to avoid damages or loss, and minimize costs during your next maintenance schedule;

  • Inspect walls regularly for cracks, peeling wallpaper and paint
  • Make immediate electrical repairs
  • Ensure plumbing works fine

Also, remember to avoid budgeting mistakes through consulting and include as much detail in your budgeting plan as you possibly can.

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