When buying a home it is common to think primarily about the listing price, monthly mortgage payments, and closing costs. Yet, there are more expenses involved in owning a home than that. One that tends to be minimized is the cost of maintenance. Prepare yourself for the many maintenance items that will need attention once you own a home with these insights from Westmont Illinois real estate agent Beata Kolpek.
Saving for Repairs
One word of advice when it comes to covering maintenance costs is to put aside funds specifically for maintenance. As a general rule, save about one to three percent of the purchase price each year for repairs. So if your home costs $250,000 try to set aside $2,500 at the very least. And what will you be spending this money on? Consider the typical maintenance issues:
• Drainage issues (related to basement or crawl space)
• Roof repair
• Electrical issues
• Water heater replacement
• Heating & cooling issues
• Windows and doors leaking air
• Structural issues
Save on Energy
Another way to prepare financially for maintenance issues is to identify ways to save energy. There are green options for many aspects of the home. For example, if you will be getting new appliances in the kitchen, be sure to ask about energy efficient models. Light bulbs are another way to save on energy. The amount of energy that is saved over an extended period of time can be significant.
Plan Your Projects
The good news is that not all maintenance issues arise at the same time and projects can be spaced out over time. When you have a solid budget you can plan which projects can happen at what time. It may take a few years to set aside enough money for a new roof, but that tile in the bathroom can happen in a month or two. By planning well you can improve your home and add value to it as well.
Know When to Hire
One last way to prepare financially for home maintenance is to determine which projects require professional help. This is important because it can save you money both ways. Obviously, you save money when you do a project yourself. This is also a great way to learn new things. You can actually save money when you hire someone as well. When you do projects yourself that have the potential for costly mistakes, you’ll actually spare yourself extra cost and stress by getting a good contractor. You may be able to reface those kitchen cabinets, but leave the roofing to an expert. For more help buying your next home contact Westmont IL Realtor Beata Kolpek.