How Much Are Average Home Maintenance Costs?

If you take a look around your neighborhood, you’ll probably see many different homes — and odds are some of those homes will look better than others. Every homeowner has their own style when it comes to maintaining their home.

Depending on how a home’s been cared for, you can expect to pay about one percent of your home’s current market value in annual maintenance expenses. But there are other ways to think about saving for the inevitable repair or replacement of your home’s big ticket items.

Do you know how much to budget for home maintenance? We’re here to help you narrow down that illusive number so you can manage your home’s budget with greater certainty.

Factors for Estimating Average Home Maintenance Costs Per-year

It’s fair to say that forecasting the future is next to impossible. But you can weigh a number of important factors together and emerge with an idea of what your yearly house maintenance budget will need to be. Here are a few key factors that affect your home’s maintenance budget:

Where your home’s located. The physical position of your home — relative to hills, water flow channels, flood plains, etc. — all have an impact on how well a home will fare over the years. For instance, you can expect higher yearly home maintenance costs for homes that see large amounts of water in the basement every year.

The weather your home experiences. Your local climate can weigh heavily on average monthly home maintenance costs. Roofs don’t last as long when high winds persist for days at a time. Areas that see a lot of freezing and thawing can also take their toll on a home’s exterior.

Your home’s condition impacts its yearly home maintenance costs. Homeowners that take pride in their home and do what they can to keep it running smoothly benefit in many ways. They may spend a bit more up front, but their yearly home maintenance costs are more predictable as a result. When older homes have been well maintained, they typically have furnaces that last longer, too.

The age of your home. As your home ages, it’s going to need upkeep and repairs. The age of a home is a big predictor in its overall health. Average repair and maintenance costs can be minimized in older homes by hiring professionals to regularly check in on your appliances and systems. Homes built 30 – 40 years ago will usually require more spending to maintain than homes built within the last decade.

How Does Climate Effect Your Home’s Health?

Local weather can take its toll on your home. Take a look at the various ways your house maintenance costs are absorbed around the home depending on seasonality and the region where you live.

Winter climates can accelerate home maintenance expenses. Physical stressors on your home like temperature and changes, ice and snow can impact your home’s defenses. When insulation around your foundation is lacking, pipes are more likely to burst in frigid temperatures and gutters are more likely to create ice damming.

Humid regions can affect your home’s property maintenance costs. Southern, coastal areas and humid regions can harbor conditions where mold and mildew can flourish. Frequent rainfall or exposure to tropical storms can beat up your roof as temperatures shift from very hot and sunny to wet and cool all year long.

Mild weather can help your home to last longer. If the weather’s just fine most of the year, your HVAC systems won’t need to be running — and they’re likely to stay in better repair as a result. And the rest of your home’s systems are more likely to stay in better shape, too.

Calculating Home Maintenance Costs

Most home maintenance expenses can be anticipated when you’re regularly spending on maintenance. You’re more likely to be caught off guard by big ticket maintenance expenses when major home systems are neglected. Here’s a look at average home maintenance costs vs. the average cost to replace these items.

Average Annual Maintenance Cost
Average Replacement Cost
$110 - $200
$3,000 - $6,000
$125 - $375
$400 - $2,000
Water heater
$80 - $100
$750 - $1,400
$75 - $150
$1,000 - $2,500

Your total home maintenance budget is made up of many separate expenses — some of them quite small — like gas for the lawn mower or filters for your furnace. But you’ll need to budget for other expenses, too. Take a look at how individual average maintenance costs can add up quickly:

Repairs and general maintenance
HOA fees
Utility bills
Property taxes
Lawn care and snow removal
Homeowners insurance
Private mortgage insurance
Monthly Maintenance Cost
5-year Maintenance Cost

The One Percent Rule

There are many ways to consider saving up and budgeting for home maintenance repair expenses. The one percent rule is a good standard because it’s so easy to remember. Just put aside one percent of the total purchase price of your home for home maintenance repairs. A $250,000 home would require you to save $2,500 annually, or about $209 per month.

It’s a rough estimate that doesn’t take into account labor costs or materials, and other factors can contribute to this base price.

The Square Foot Rule

Budgeting for the eventual breakdown and replacement of major home systems like a new roof or replacing a sump pump may not be easy, but it is possible. If you’re wondering about how to estimate property maintenance costs, the square foot rule can be helpful, and it’s another really easy way to put money away for repairs and home maintenance.

Budget about $1 for every square foot of livable space, every year, for maintenance costs. And this rule is also applicable for estimating new home maintenance costs. So, a 2,500 square foot home would require a $2,500 budget annually, or about $209 per month.

What Are the Hidden Costs of Buying a Home?

Although you may ready yourself to pay for upgrades after purchasing a home, many unexpected costs can surface right at the closing table. Want to learn more about what your potential home-buying costs might be? Check out our Hidden Costs of Buying a Home Calculator and feel more prepared, confident and ready for closing day!

There are a lot of ways to put away money for home maintenance and repair costs. The important part is that you do it, one way or another. When the time comes, you’ll have a head start on funding repairs for the replacement of your home’s major systems. As you consider your budgeting options, do yourself a favor and reach out to your American Family Insurance agent. You’ll find they’re a great resource for helping you develop an insurance policy that covers your home carefully.

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Related Topics: At Home , Owning A Home