Importance of Home Maintenance
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The initial cost of buying, financing and closing a house is only the beginning. It is easy to focus on down payments, closing costs, inspections and appraisals, without planning for maintaining. Homes that have been well maintained are the ones that show best, live best and hold their value best.

Prepare to become proactive with routine maintenance. It will extend the life of the structure of your house and appliances and save money. It has been estimated that the average house will experience 50% replacement over 30 years.

Plan on <1% to 3% of the cost of a house to be budgeted annually for maintenance and repairs. A new construction home will have a warranty and expectation that major items will be covered for several years. An older home may be without warranty and expectation for a larger percentage to be spent on maintenance and repairs. Starting a separate savings account and funding it monthly will create a reserve and encourage timely repairs.

Protecting and maintaining your home, will not only provide the best quality of life while living in it, but will also protect the best chance of increasing the value in an up market and sustaining the value in a down market.  I can’t stress enough, the importance of Home Maintenance

To keep your home running smoothly for the long haul, add these quick and preventative projects to your monthly cleaning checklist:

  • Clean dishwasher filter. Remove and clean the filter each month to keep your dishes sparkling clean, along with regular kitchen cleaning.
    • Time required: 15 minutes
    • Potential savings: $112/yr
  • Clean kitchen disposal. Throw some ice cubes and bleach into your disposal, and run until clear to sharpen blades and disinfect. Run again with orange peels for a fresher sink.
    • Time required: Five minutes
  • Clean dryer vent. Even with proper lint filter cleaning, lint can still build up in the vent over time. Remove the vent from the back of the dryer each month and vacuum out excess lint to prevent fires and boost your dryer’s efficiency.
    • Time required: 15 minutes
    • Potential savings: $1,669
  • Dust surfaces. Help prevent allergies and extend the life of your air filter by dusting off all surfaces in your home at least once a month, if not more.
    • Time required: 10 to 20 minutes
  • Inspect and locate fire extinguishers. Ensure fire extinguishers aren’t expired and are easy to access. If needed, go over how to use them with your family in case of an emergency.
    • Time required: Five minutes
  • Test smoke detectors. Check batteries in all your smoke detectors each month and replace if necessary, to give yourself peace of mind in case of a fire.
    • Time required: 10 minutes

Be sure to check HGTV for other tips: