Effective Ways to Save Money on Home Maintenance
Making the jump from renter to homeowner often represents a huge adjustment. While it’s nice to have more space and be the master of one’s own domain, owning your home also entails being responsible for maintenance costs. Whereas renters can rely on landlords to handle issues relating to plumbing, electricity and appliances, homeowners must pay for maintenance and repairs out of their own pockets.
Fortunately, this doesn’t have to make a dent in your personal finances. Putting the following pointers into practice can go a long way in reducing your home maintenance costs.
Purchase Warranties for Heavy-duty Appliances
When residing in a rental property, your landlord will repair heavy-duty appliances like refrigerators and ovens at no cost to you. Since you don’t actually own said appliances, repairing them is not your burden to bear. Needless to say, this isn’t how it works for homeowners. As the owner of your various appliances, keeping them in working order is solely your responsibility.
Depending on the nature of the problem you’re experiencing, fixing it may cost a small fortune. With this in mind, it’s in your best interest to purchase extended warranties with pricey appliances like fridges, water heaters and air conditioners. Spending a comparatively small amount of money on a warranty stands to save you a substantial sum whenever one of these appliances finds itself in need of repair. If you can bring yourself to part with a little extra cash the next time you purchase a large appliance, you’ll be able to use that appliance with complete peace of mind. Additionally, if an appliance is relatively new, confirm whether it’s still covered by a manufacturer’s warranty before spending money on repairs. More often than not, this information can be found in owner’s manuals and on manufacturers’ websites.
Adopt a Budget-conscious Approach to Lawn Care
Many homeowners take pride in maintaining well-kept lawns. Since the lawn is among the first things passersby notice when looking at homes, it’s easy to see why people go all-out when it comes to lawn maintenance. However, it’s possible for grass to be over-maintained, and constantly doting on your lawn can actually make it less resilient and weaker against drought conditions. On the flipside, adopting a budget-conscious approach to lawn care stands to save you considerable time and money.
Although some lawn care enthusiasts water their grass on a near-daily basis, this bad for both your lawn and your personal finances. In addition to increasing your monthly water bills, this ultimately makes grass weak and over-dependent on frequent watering. To save money and keep your grass resilient, make a point of watering no more than once a week. Watering for about an hour — or until the grass has been given 1 to 1.5 inches of water — will strengthen your lawn, increase its absorbency and reduce weed formation. Conversely, if you live in an area that receives heavy rainfall, you may not need to water your grass at all.
Engage in Preventative Maintenance
One of the most effective ways to save big on home repairs is preventative maintenance. As the name suggests, this practice entails locating and repairing small problems before they’re able to become larger, considerably costlier problems. Preventative maintenance is particularly helpful when it comes to plumbing, structural and heating and cooling mishaps. Case in point: The instant you come across a backed-up drain or a dripping pipe, don’t hesitate to address the issue. Additionally, having your heating and cooling system inspected annually is a great way to nip a variety of problems in the bud. As is the case with appliance warranties, spending a little bit of money now will save you a princely sum in the long run.
For many people, becoming a homeowner is one of the most important steps on the path through adulthood. However, this isn’t to say that renting doesn’t have its advantages. For example, being able to have a wide assortment of maintenance issues fixed free of charge is an undeniable perk of apartment living. Unsurprisingly, the prospect of being financially responsible for every maintenance mishap that springs up gives a number of first-time homeowners pause. While it’s true that some maintenance issues are rather costly, there are many effective ways to ease your financial burden.