Home Maintenance Budget

Hi All - I purchased a home last year and am trying to figure out how much I should have set aside and budgeted for home maintenance.  Obviously things can vary greatly year to year but was hoping others on here would share how much they set aside for this category on an annual or monthly basis?

I already have an emergency fund that would cover 5 months of living expenses so this would be money purely set aside for issues with the house.

Thanks in advance!

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  • It's definitely hard to say and depends on what kind of home you have... Right now I have approx. $400 set aside (just started using YNAB last week) and planned to add $150/month - then we will see...

    Things I considered:

    - Furnace filter:  $20 / four times a year
    - Chimney cleaning: $100 / year
    - We had an accident and had to use Home Owners Insurance - that was $1,000 out of pocket
    - Clogged drain and we paid $500 to "water jet" the whole line
    - Garage door broke three years ago: I think it was about $600 to fix it
    - We started repainting some rooms: $30 / gallon for paint

    So at the end of the year, I should have at least a "Maintenance Fund" to cover all those expenses.

    Like 1
  • 1%-2% of the home's value per year is a standard metric.

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      • GalleYNAB
      • galleynab
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      jenmas Perfect, so I will be on  track at the end of the year ;)

      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
      • 1 yr ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      jenmas This seems like a strange metric because my home has gone up in value by a factor of 2 since I bought it but I don't think that would affect the maintenance costs except possibly affecting the price I pay to get work done because of general rise in costs in my area.  

      Like 1
  • We save 1.5% of our home value each month ($300), for general maintenance and have a category with our full home insurance deductible. 

    Since we bought an older home, and have plenty of projects in mind—we budget for those separately in our Wish Farm.

  • Nicole said:
    we budget for those separately in our Wish Farm.

     I heard "Wish Farm" a few times since I started YNAB (last week) but just read about it (thanks for the link). That's awesome, just need to convince my wife. Haha

    Like 1
  • It's not maintenance,  but I'd suggest an inventory of system and their ages to plan for major repairs. For me: complete roof replacement in 2015, 35 yr life, need to be ready to replace in 2050. Do that for water heater, heater (furnace), air conditioner, water softener, siding, well pump, etc. Then you'd have an idea of what should be replaced next. If it's a water heater this year start looking for rebates or free installation deals and replace it before it pukes out. 

    Like 1
    • Khaki Storm   This is a great idea!  Most of our appliances and major systems (including roof) are fairly new but our furnace is probably 35 years old and I'm just waiting for it to die on me.

      • Khaki Storm
      • YNAB book topics online: https://support.youneedabudget.com/r/q5w48j
      • Khaki_Storm.1
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      Cyan Violin even for top brands,  that's very old. Hopefully you have a gentle winter and a homeowner's warranty. Not sure you need a warranty, our didn't help much in our situation. Now is a good time to research your choices (converting to or from gas, electric,  geo thermal,  heat pump, etc), find rebates, and start getting some prices. 

  • In my four years of home ownership, I experienced about $1200 in small maintenance needs a year and one large maintenance need that averaged $3800 a year (roof tear-off and replace was $5k, water heater went out and took out the floor laminate was $4k after insurance, ants got into the heat pump and fried the motherboard $2.5k).


    I'd bought a 70 year old home that had been sloppily renovated to flip quickly, and I have zero handy skills beyond being able to wield a paintbrush and staple down chicken wire (did I mention the skunk who moved into the crawl space?), so having to contract with professionals doubled the small maintenance costs. 

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