When I first became a homeowner, I had no idea about the costs involved. I knew that in addition to my monthly mortgage payments, I will have to deal with other expenses like property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. I also knew that the upkeep of my house would cost money. But there are certain types Maintenance which over the years turned out to be much more expensive than I thought. Here are a few that took me by surprise.
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1. Cleaning the gutters
You may need to clean your gutters once a year, twice a year, or more often, depending on the location of your home and the number of tall trees hanging over it. Fortunately, my home usually only requires cleaning the gutters once a year, but since I have a multi-storey building, I am not comfortable that we do the cleaning of the gutters ourselves. This requires my husband to climb a very high ladder, while I hold said ladder steady as he yanks it back and forth. And given the risk of injury, this task should be entrusted to professionals.
The cost of one gutter cleaning for us is between $ 200 and $ 240, although a professional service takes less than 30 minutes to get the job done. I would have thought it would be cheaper based on how long it takes to get the job done, but due to the risk factor, gutter cleaning companies tend to charge more.
2. Washing machine.
My house has wood flooring that needs to be washed once a year. We also have to wash the siding every two years. This is a job that we would be ready to do ourselves, if not for the cost and hassle of renting a pressure washer.
The daily rent in our area costs about $ 100, plus we have to lug the car from the hardware store to and from our home – and spend many hours getting the job done. In recent years, we’ve decided to just pay someone around $ 200 for the job, because it’s not much more expensive than renting the tools we need. But I was surprised that it is so expensive to rent a pressure washer in the first place.
3. Deck maintenance
In addition to the annual cleaning of the wooden deck, which is required every two years, we also have to re-grind and repaint our deck. The materials used are not too expensive – maybe $ 100. But this work is extensive and usually takes several days or requires us to work from morning to evening, which is not easy since we have small children at home.
In addition, we need the weather to cooperate – it can’t be too hot, too cold, or too humid to paint and seal the deck – so we are limited in when we can perform this service. Also, my husband and I work full time for a week, and in fact we only have weekends to do household projects. As such, we often have to hire people to service our deck, and lately it has cost us around $ 1,000 to have a team of two come in during the day.
To be honest, this figure shocked me. But since our weekends were busy at the time, and we didn’t want to take a vacation to figure out our deck, we spent the money.
Come in prepared
Maintaining a home can be a huge expense that takes many property owners by surprise. Make sure you have enough room in your budget for home maintenance, keeping in mind that as your property ages, your costs can increase.
On the other hand, I have between $ 600 and $ 700 a month to maintain my home. In some months we spend less and in others more – and this with we carry out certain tasks ourselves. This money set aside for maintenance helps us, as homeowners, manage our finances and avoid the stress of when things get expensive in the end.
But that being said, my $ 700 a month is just for standard maintenance – does not include repairs. They can be even more expensive, so it is important for all homeowners to have a decent amount of money in saving always.