Budget for Home MaintenanceBudgeting for home maintenance is difficult to be exact, however to make sure that you have close to the right amount set aside for home maintenance so that it is not a burden to you when the time comes, is relatively easy.  As your home gets older, there is always going to be something to replace or repair. Take a look at the things that are nearing their end of life. Obtain quotes for replacement and / or repair. Decide if you will do the work yourself or hire someone. This makes a huge difference in terms of how much you will need to budget for home maintenance.

Budget for Home Maintenance – Assess your home

The first step is to asses your home. Look at all of the big items that will need some sort of work done in the next 20 years. These typically include the following items – roof, driveway, furnace, water heater, air conditioner, windows, flooring, window treatments and garage door.

The next step is to figure out the cost of replacing all of these items and timing of when each item will need replacement. We are talking about average years to replace and the cost today to replace the item. You can allow for inflation as well. Which is a good step to take especially if the item in question will last for another 20 years.

Some work will be do it yourself jobs. But many of the larger jobs must be completed by skilled professionals or businesses with the right kind of equipment. E.g. replacing your driveway. Decide which jobs will be done by yourself. Which ones will not, make sure the full cost of material and installation is included.

Repairs and replacements don’t always happen as planned. For example a furnace that should last another 10 years might only last 10 years. While the water heater will last for 20 years. At least if you are setting money aside you will have some of the money saved if the furnace for example quits early.

Divide the cost to replace the item by the number of years that you expect them to last. The result is the amount that you need to save every year.

Upgrades, renovations, improvements

These items are another area to include since they are more discretionary. They can also involved big bucks. For example if you are planning to replace your carpet flooring with hardwood, the cost will be in the thousands of dollars. Again decide when it will be done, ask for several estimates and then decide how much you need to save to ensure you have sufficient funds to pay for whatever you are improving.

Improvements can include new floors, landscaping, adding a pool or hot tub and so on. The more you can do yourself the more you will save and reduce / control your overall cost.

Once you have all of the estimates and the cost for each item, the timing of each item figured out, you can arrive at a total number that will indicate how much you need to save for all of your plans and home maintenance costs. Depending on your income, there may be a need to make adjustments to your plans. For example the landscaping you planned may need to be delayed for a couple of years until you have enough money saved.