The new year isn’t just a good time to make resolutions. The new year is also a good time to plan your home repairs and maintenance for the year. Planning your home maintenance costs for the year will help you plan your household budget.
Let’s look at how to plan for new year home repairs and maintenance.
What is considered home maintenance?
Home maintenance includes anything you do to keep your home in good repair. Every year, your home will require regular maintenance, as well as repairs. Some will be planned while others will happen unexpectedly. When you factor these into your budget, you’ll be in a better position to handle them when they occur.
Annual maintenance costs can include:
- Replacing batteries in smoke detectors
- Annual furnace maintenance
- Furnace filter replacements
- Cleaning eavestroughs
- Lawn care
- Window cleaning
- Caulking doors and windows
Other longer-term projects and occasional repairs or replacements include:
- Roof replacement/repair
- New fence
- New water heater
- Furnace replacement
- New air conditioner
Before you can budget for these expenses, you need to have an idea of what they’ll be based on your home’s value, age, condition, size, and location.
How to Calculate Maintenance Costs
There are a few ways to calculate your estimated maintenance costs for the year. There are many variables that affect this calculation, but it’s important to have an estimate to include in your household budget.
The 1% Rule
The 1% rule says that your annual maintenance budget should be 1% of your home’s purchase price. For example, if you bought your home for $400,000, you budget $4,000 for annual maintenance. But, some say this is too low and that it should be closer to 3-5%. In this case, that’d be in the $12,000 to $20,000 range.
The 1% Rule is a good place to start as it gives you an idea of what you could expect to spend, but it’s not necessarily the most accurate.
Another way to estimate maintenance costs is by square footage. This approach suggests you save $1 per square foot of your home. While it’s true that a bigger house costs more to maintain, this method doesn’t take into account all possible variables. For example, if you have a new home, you won’t need to replace your appliances for a while, regardless of house size.
The best way to estimate your costs is an individualized approach. This method allows you to look at your specific property and make a maintenance schedule that’s suited to your home. Consider your home’s age, size, and other features like your roof, foundation, siding, electrical, and plumbing.
Research replacement and repair costs for these and prepare a rough timeline as to when you’ll need to do each.
Don’t forget to factor in:
- Air conditioner
- Water Heater
- Other major appliances
- Monthly cost of regular upkeep
With this, you should have a good idea of your total home maintenance costs for the new year and beyond.
Protect Your Family and Your Home
When you know your annual expenses for repairs and maintenance, you can better plan your household budget. Having a budget helps you manage spending and save money for emergencies, and the future.
Still, things happen that you don’t plan for, and those things are usually expensive. For these situations, there’s the Smarter Living Plan. It covers repairs, maintenance, and replacement of furniture, appliances, and home systems. When you make your budget, account for a Smarter Living Plan – it’ll save you money in the long run.