Thursday, February 25, 2016 / by Vanessa Saunders
If you haven't already laid out major money in home repairs, you're lucky. In fact, HomeAdvisor's survey found that over 75 percent of homeowners had to pay for an emergency repair within 12 months of buying. Don't get caught off guard as most people are. Add these tools to your toolkit.
No. 1: Repairs and Maintenance Fund
The first and most important tool in your toolbox is your repairs and maintenance fund. You may think to yourself that you just bought this house or that you've been living in it a while, so everything should be perfect, but you would be wrong. In fact, typical homeowners can wind up spending up to 1 percent of the purchase price of their homes on repairs in just the first year of home ownership. Make sure you set at least a couple of thousand dollars aside, and keep adding to the fund until you have about $10,000 saved.
No. 2: An Actual Toolbox
Perhaps you have a small makeshift toolbox, but it's time to be a grown-up and get a serious toolbox that includes a drill, drill bits, nails, multiple types of screwdrivers and more. Invest in a top-of-the-line toolkit that will help you take care of the small repairs around the house.
No. 3: Numbers of Local Contractors
Some of the repairs that will come up in your first year you can do yourself for little money. However, some problems that you encounter will require an actual professional to help you fix them. Put together a list of highly rated local contractors, and keep it with your repair kit. Include electricians, plumbers, landscapers, painters and so on.
No. 4: An Account at the Hardware Store
You're a homeowner now, so your local hardware store is going to be your saving grace when you need a pipe cutter or drywall. If you open an account, many times you will get special discounts to go with it. The savings can add up to a lot over the years, especially if you're handy and can make a lot of the repairs yourself.
No. 5: DIY Preparedness
Finally, you can stow that repair fund money for a while if you get more comfortable with trying to tackle some of the smaller repair projects yourself. In the first year of homeownership, the types of home repairs that you will likely run into include:
- Broken HVAC system.
- Leaking water.
- Clogged drains.
- Blocked sewage system.
If instead of spending money on a contractor to fix a simple faucet leak you do it yourself, that's likely to keep at least a couple of hundred to a thousand dollars in your pocket. However, know when you are out of your comfort zone and it's time to call in a professional. If you need some recommendations, give me a call, and I might be able to refer a professional.