As we approach the National Home Warranty Day on February 10, it is time to look at the ways you can protect yourself from unwanted and unexpected home repair costs. This will not only keep your budget intact but will also give you peace of mind against the expensive home repair costs. A lot of homeowners do not anticipate a home repair and end up spending a huge part of their budget when it hits them unexpectedly. You might have homeowners insurance but there are ways you can protect yourself from the expenses if you plan well.
Get your finances right
If you do not take care of your finances well, an unexpected expense will cause you to go into debt. There are some expenses that you can delay but not all and, in such cases, you will have to face significant expenses that could put you in deep trouble. It is a step that has many lasting consequences and could also damage your credit. Hence, the first thing you need to do is organize the finances and know where you stand.
Have emergency funds
If you want to ensure that unexpected home repair does not hamper your monthly budget, you need to set aside an emergency fund. Set up a fund that will help with the repairs and appliance replacement in your home. It will also protect your family and yourself financially. This might not happen overnight, but you need to start at the earliest. Try to put away about three to six months’ worth of expenses in a fund for home repairs and maintenance.
Try to set aside $3,000 to $5,000 annually in the fund. It will help provide for the repairs during an emergency and you will not have to take a new debt. To ensure that you do not use this fund for any other emergency, set it aside and do not be tempted to withdraw from it unless there is a home repair emergency.
Buy a home warranty
The best way to protect yourself from unexpected home repair expenses is to buy a home warranty. Since homeowners’ insurance will not cover every appliance in your house like a dishwasher, water heater, or furnace, this is when you need to consider a home warranty. Cinch Home Services (https://www.cinchhomeservices.com/faq-library/-/faq/what-is-a-home-warranty) helps you learn more about it.
It is often a part of the home-buying contract and is usually bargained between buyers and sellers. A lot of people highly recommend home warranties as it helps save money during replacement or repairs. You might have to pay an extra $500 for a home warranty for a year but it can give you peace of mind and will save a lot of money in the long term. The warranties also make it easier for a contractor to work with you.
Focus on regular maintenance
The appliances in your home will need regular maintenance and if you ignore that, you could end up with a huge bill after a couple of years. Appliances like an HVAC unit or dishwasher will need regular maintenance and you can schedule it throughout the year. Simply ask a professional to visit and check the appliance. If you notice that the appliance is not functioning as it should or if the utility bill is on the rise, ask for maintenance service and you will see that it lasts longer than you thought it would. With regular maintenance of the appliance, the chances of a breakdown are low, and it will not need replacement.
Don’t spend all you have got
Whether you are renovating your home or looking to replace an appliance, have a budget and stick to it. Do not spend all the money you have got or have set aside in the emergency fund. This could put you in trouble in the long run. No matter the repair requirement or the type of expense you need to incur, remember to know where to stop. You might be tempted to buy a new HVAC unit instead of getting it repaired but consider the pros and cons and keep the cost in mind before you make such a big decision. Avoid replacing expensive appliances until they can no longer function.
These are a few effective ways you can protect yourself from unexpected and unplanned repair expenses in your home. As a homeowner, it is natural to want to have your home in the best condition but there are times when things do not go as planned and you might have to incur more expenses than you originally planned. If it is avoidable, try to push it back until you have the funds to afford the expense. If it is unavoidable, you will have to dip into your emergency fund to get the repairs done.