Repairing Your Home Without Breaking the Bank

There are many financial benefits to owning a home instead of renting. Unfortunately owning also comes with the responsibility for making repairs and improvements. Between cosmetic upgrades, emergency repairs, and seasonal maintenance, being a homeowner can feel awful expensive at times.

In preparation for the winter season, Money.com recently highlighted seven ways to save on home repairs. Their first tip is to perform maintenance during the off season. Obviously if your furnace conks out in the winter, you’ll likely want to get that fixed and have to pay a premium to do so. However, having the furnace serviced during the summer will likely to save you a significant sum .

Perhaps the most obvious way to save money on repairs is to do them yourself instead of calling out a contractor. While some things should be left to the professionals, you may be surprised how straightforward and DIY-friendly a majority of smaller projects can be. But how do you know where to start?

Known for its collections of cute animal videos and pop song covers, YouTube is actually a spectacular resource for repair tutorials. Personally I’ve learned everything from how to install a new garbage disposal to how to reset the annoying oil change light on my car thanks to YouTube videos. However, one problem you may encounter after watching one of these tutorials is realizing you have inadequate tools.

There are some tools you likely have (or should have) on hand, such as a wrench, hammer, and set of screwdrivers. But there are larger and more expensive items you will likely only need to use a handful of times. This is where renting tools can offer great savings. Today a number of retailers and websites offer tool rental services making it easy to secure what you need for your project. Alternatively you could also ask your neighbors to borrow some of their equipment… just be sure to return it.

Having the right tools is only half of the equation; you’ll also need materials. One way to save some cash is to purchase salvaged goods. Whether you’re fixing up an item to get it back in working order or repurposing it entirely, this approach is both economical and environmentally friendly.

If you do hire a contractor, another tip is to see if you can purchase the materials separately from the labor. Not only will this allow you to be more hands on with what’s installed in your home but could also save you money since many contractors will mark up their cost. Just make sure to get a full list from your contractor of what they’ll need for the project so that they won’t have to make any more expensive runs to the store.

Finally whenever you purchase new appliances or materials be sure to check for rebates or other discounts. Once again, buying off season can often result in bonus cash back or deals. You should also look into government reimbursements or tax credits associated with energy saving projects for your home.

Home improvements and repairs can be costly. This is especially true when contractors or other professionals are involved and even more so when demand for similar repairs is high. By keeping up with off-season preventive maintenance, looking into deals and rebates, and exploring DIY options, you can make a healthy habit of saving money on home repair projects.

Author

Jonathan Dyer

I'm a small town guy living in Los Angeles looking to make solid financial decisions. I write for a number of finance websites, including HuffingtonPost and Business2Community. I founded DyerNews.com in 2015 to focus on personal finance and the emerging FinTech markets.

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