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Home Maintenance Budgeting for New Homeowners

Home Maintenance Budgeting for New Homeowners

Keep this budgeting timeline in mind when buying a home

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Buying a new home is a big investment. Keeping up on your new home is part of that investment, and it’s important to understand when you should be checking on things and how far in advance you should start saving money to make necessary changes and updates to your home.

The general timeline

The general timeline

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When you first purchase your home, the cost of maintenance might not be as expensive as it will be later down the road. This is because you typically won’t be replacing big things like your roof or the back deck within the first few years. So what should you expect to pay annually if you continue to stay on top of maintenance issues? About 1% of the current market value of your home is what you might spend on upkeep, according to American Family Insurance. Knowing that will help you budget for other costs that might arise every 15 or 20 years.

Issues your inspector found

Issues your inspector found

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You should fix issues your inspector found before your home purchase within the first year of ownership. If your inspector noted things such as cracks in the basement floor, easily fixable cosmetic issues or loose fixtures throughout the home, make these repairs within your first 12 months of living in the home.

Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors

Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors

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This should be done monthly. If you use your kitchen for a lot of cooking, chances are you’ve gotten annoyed with your smoke detector going off. Don’t get so annoyed that you remove the batteries and forget to replace them, though. The U.S. Fire Administration recommends testing your alarms monthly and replacing them every 10 years to avoid deaths resulting from a home fire. Replacing a fire and carbon monoxide alarm could cost between $10 and $65 depending on the brand.

Loose hazards like floorboards and railings

Loose hazards like floorboards and railings

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Keep a clear mind by fixing small, yet hazardous things as soon as possible. Check your home for loose floorboards, railings, ceiling fans, lights, gutters and other hardware. For example, a loose railing could cost about $38 per linear foot to replace and, depending on the complexity of electrical work that needs to be done, a ceiling fan repair could cost between $85 and $300.

Fireplace and chimney cleaning

Fireplace and chimney cleaning

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Fireplace and chimney cleaning should be done annually. If you spend a lot of time cozied up near your fireplace, you’ll want to make sure it’s clean so it’s ready for your next family game night. Budget about $300 to $400 for this.

Gutter cleaning

Gutter cleaning

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You should clean your gutters or have them cleaned annually, but it’s a perfect thing to add to a spring maintenance checklist. Single-story homes could cost between $70 and $200, and two-story homes could cost up to $225.

HVAC maintenance

HVAC maintenance

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HVAC maintenance should be done annually. Changing your air filter every six months could help lower maintenance fees because it could extend the life of your heating and cooling system. It could also help lower your monthly bills and is one of many ways to make your home healthier.

Asphalt sealing

Asphalt sealing

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This should be done every one to three years. Costs will depend on the size of the driveway or backyard you may be resealing. Do a financial checkup every few months to make sure you’re saving enough money for this necessity.

Inspect caulking and protective finishes

Inspect caulking and protective finishes

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Inspecting caulk and protective finishes should be done every three to five years. The national average for caulking the perimeter of a home is between $86 and $199.

Septic tank pumping

Septic tank pumping

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If you have a septic tank, pumping should be done every five to seven years. The more your septic tank is pumped, the less you’ll have to spend on repairs later down the line. A filter replacement could cost between $200 and $300, whereas a whole new tank could cost up to $3,000. The typical range for cleaning is between $285 and $516.

Carpeting

 Carpeting

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Carpet is incredibly high trafficked in a home and should be cleaned weekly and replaced every 10 years to 20 years. Carpeting costs will vary by brand name and style, but you can expect to pay between $890 and $7,500 for 1,000 square feet of carpeting.

Check the grout in your home

Check the grout in your home

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This should be done every 15 years. For 1,000 square feet of tile, budget between $250 and $1,000 for regrouting. Places to consider regrouting are the shower, tile flooring, tile counters and fireplaces.

Replace your furnace

Replace your furnace

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Furnace replacements should be done every 15 to 20 years. According to HVAC, most homeowners pay around $3,800 for a new furnace.

Refinish your hardwood floors

Refinish your hardwood floors

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Hardwood floors should be refinished every 10 to 20 years. If you have hardwood floors to avoid carpet cleaning, know that you still need to maintain your wood floors. Refinishing your floors will depend greatly on the amount of traffic they see. For example, houses with no kids running through them might be able to go longer without needing to be refinished. A new coat without sanding might cost you about $1 per square foot, and a complete refinish that requires sanding down to bare wood might cost you $1.50 to $4 per square foot.

Doors

Doors

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Doors should be replaced every 20 years. Pricing for doors is going to vary depending on your location. Weather and everyday use will wear down your door, so you should check for cracked paint, mold or mildew, and keep in mind that you might want to invest in a new one every couple decades. Later down the road, if you’re considering selling, new doors could also help boost the resale value of your home.

Replace your deck

Replace your deck

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Decks should be replaced every 20 to 25 years. How often you host barbecues and throw parties, in addition to wear and tear from weather, will influence how often you need to replace your deck. For a pressure-treated wood deck, expect to pay around $30 to $35 per square foot.

Get a new roof

Get a new roof

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Roofs should be replaced every 20 to 30 years. Some shingles are made to be long-lasting, but if they’re curling at the edges, falling off or cracked, your roof needs a replacement. This could happen sooner than 20 years if you live in an area that gets heavy winter storms. A roof for a single-story 2,000-square-foot ranch house can range between $8,500 and $16,500, according to J&M Roofing.

Linoleum or vinyl floor replacement

Linoleum or vinyl floor replacement

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Replace your linoleum or vinyl floor every 20 to 30 years. Although they’re easy to maintain and durable options for homes that get a lot of foot traffic, linoleum and vinyl don’t last forever. If your floors are beat up from years of furniture rearranging, home workouts or chasing kids around, it could be time to invest in new flooring after a couple decades. Sheet vinyl can start around $15 per yard, whereas vinyl tiles are about $1.50 per square foot, according to The Home Depot. This will vary depending on where you live as well as the type of vinyl you choose.

Why you should stay on top of deep cleaning

Why you should stay on top of deep cleaning

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Not only is it a way to prevent bugs and mold growth, but deep cleaning your home means you’re taking a more in-depth look at things that may not cross your mind daily. You might catch a repair that needs to happen earlier than you thought, which gives you advance time to save money rather than being surprised after the problem gets worse.

Home maintenance is important for your health

Home maintenance is important for your health

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Yes, completing home maintenance tasks as they come up will help you distribute costs more efficiently in the long run, but it could also help you keep a home that could improve your well-being. Dusting, mold removal and filter replacements are just a few things you can do to create a healthier home.

 

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