Owning a home in Albuquerque can bring some anxiety when it comes to dealing with unexpected repairs. According to a recent report, most homeowners say that home repairs and maintenance top the list of worries when it comes to owning a home.
According to Holden Lewis, NerdWallet’s home analyst, “When you buy a home, you take a leap into the unknown. So it’s no wonder that homeowners say they’re anxious in our survey. Don’t spend your last dime on the down payment. Instead, set aside a few thousand dollars to take care of unexpected maintenance and repairs. Having an emergency stash will help you sleep better.”
You certainly can’t plan for every contingency, but there are a few ways to reduce the stress of unexpected home repairs. Here’s a few tips that can help.
One sure way to reduce the chances of major repairs in the future is regular maintenance. If you fix small problems right away, like a leaky pipe, it can prevent having to make more major repairs that could cost thousands of dollars. An annual maintenance budget that is around 2% of your home’s value is an ideal goal. This budget could cover small repairs and regular servicing of HVAC and cleaning gutters and your chimney. Basically, anything you can do to prevent accidents and problems is money well spent.
Save For Emergencies
Your parents probably taught you to save for a rainy day, and when it comes to owning a home, there can be some very raining days, especially in a coastal community such as Beaufort. Saving for unexpected damage from weather or other emergency repairs can keep you from going into further debt. If you don’t have an emergency fund, then you can try to build one by setting attainable goals. In the end, your goal should be to have several months worth of living expenses set aside.
Plan for the Worst
After buying a home, you may later realize you have larger problems to deal with, such as bad roofing or a sinking foundation. These could end up costing more than you have saved. Before this happens, you may want to look into financing options for big ticket repairs. This way you wan’t be scrambling to finance anything beyond your savings.
Lewis says, “If savings and insurance don’t cover these high costs, your best bet might be to finance the repairs with a home equity line of credit, or HELOC. A HELOC acts like a credit card and is backed by your home’s equity. We’ve found that many homeowners get HELOCs just so they’ll have a readily available source of money in case of emergency.”
Unexpected home repairs don’t need to keep you up at night. Make sure to plan now to save yourself heartache in the future.