two level house dallas tx

The Cost of Routine Home Maintenance

As a homeowner, you are no stranger to writing big checks and the last thing you want is to be caught with empty pockets when routine home maintenance comes up. While this is an inevitable part of being a homeowner, it is a necessary one. Planning and accounting for routine maintenance can potentially save you thousands or tens of thousands of dollars in the future. In this blog, we will outline some expectations for how to tackle home maintenance and some of the costs associated with it.

What is considered routine home maintenance?

Routine home maintenance are the costs that you take on in order to maintain the general upkeep and appearance of your property. This can include but is not limited to:

  • Lawn care
  • Pest control
  • Cosmetic upkeep (repainting, fixtures, etc.)
  • Appliance and HVAC system maintenance
  • Infrastructure repairs

The 1%-4% Rule

When looking at potential home repairs, how do you know how much to budget? Unfortunately, there is no correct answer. However, we will provide you some general principles to guide your budgeting. Keep in mind that the cost of maintenance is influenced by a number of varying factors like where the property is located, its condition upon purchase, and the age of the home/if any additions have been made to the home (added rooms, garage, etc.).

According to The Balance, a great rule of thumb for determining your yearly home maintenance budget is the 1%-4% rule. Depending on the location, age, and general durability of your home, you should set aside 1% to 4% of your home’s purchase cost for repairs and maintenance. For example, if you purchased your home for $250,000, then you should set aside between $2,500 to $10,000 a year for minor repairs and maintenance.

This rule of thumb is provided as a range so that you can best estimate future costs. Your budget should trend downwards (closer to 1 or 2 percent of purchase cost) if your home is less than 20 years old, located in a relatively temperate climate, and constructed with standard/high quality materials.

Alternatively, your budget should trend upwards (closer to 3 or 4 percent of purchase cost) if your home is more than 20 years old, located in a humid or stormy climate, or constructed with lower quality materials.

It should be made clear that this rule of thumb is attributed to routine maintenance and minor repairs. More significant repairs, like replacing your roof, would be considered a major repair
and should be accounted for in an “emergency” fund or by supplementing your routine repairs
budget for any unforeseen major fixes.

The Lifetime of Your Home

Over time, your home and the appliances in it will experience traditional wear and tear. This is an inevitable part of the lifecycle of your property and we have provided here some estimates for the lifespan of some facets of the property.

Infrastructure (according to various sources)

Appliances (according to Rockethomes)

  • Dryer: 13 years
  • Washing Machine: 13 years
  • Dishwasher: 9 years
  • Refrigerator: 13 years

It is important to take note of the type of system you are using in your home. For example, water
systems can come with a tank or are tankless. Tankless systems will require different
maintenance over time and offer different advantages when compared to tanked systems.
These differences should be accounted for in your yearly maintenance budget.

If you are looking for an expansive guide to home installation and repair costs, HomeGuide offers an excellent database for determining costs and repair timelines.

Preventative Maintenance

At the end of the day, paying for repairs and replacements is just part of what it means to be a property owner. However, there are some simple ways to reduce the cost of these issues and extend the lifetime of your purchases.

One of the best ways to reduce costs and improve longevity of your home is to engage in
preventative maintenance. This means performing some simple, monthly maintenance tasks
that prevent costly repairs in the future. These tasks are often DIY-friendly and require minimal
time and cost to complete.

Some simple examples of preventative maintenance are routinely checking HVAC filters,
checking the foundation for cracks or exposure, cleaning and maintaining the gutters, and
looking for leaks near sinks and piping.

Creating a checklist that you go through every month or few months can serve as a great way to
remind yourself of what needs checking and when. Keeping a checklist can also aid you when
appliances need replacing or when warranties are about to expire.

As people, we practice preventative care to avoid getting sick. Rather than rushing to the
hospital for an emergency fix when things get bad, we monitor our blood pressure, get regular
exercise, and watch what we eat so that we don’t end up spending a fortune at the hospital.

The same logic can be applied to your home.

By keeping an eye on your home, making sure that it is well maintained and clean, you are investing in the future health and longevity of the property. Small fixes can turn into major repairs if left unattended and as we all know, money doesn’t grow on trees. Take the time to become knowledgeable about your home, create a checklist, and stay on top of preventative maintenance. This way, you can save money, take back some time, and give your home a chance to withstand the test of time.

Leave Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Discover Your Home’s Condition

Reach out to Us

    What services are you interested in?

    *Select all that apply

    *Your information remains confidential and will be used only by Mammoth Home Inspection, LLC, to contact you about your inspection.

    Get news delivered to your inbox.

    Subscribe to Our Newsletter