Crafty ways to tackle home maintenance projects: Part 2

Financial management and outdoor home maintenance.

According to the MI Money Health website, homeowners should set aside at least 3 percent of the value of their home for home maintenance each year. As the cold weather goes away and the spring rains begin to pour, it is a good idea to get outside and do some inspection.

  • Look around the yard for standing water left over from the snow melt.
  • Clean up the yard to make sure no sharp items or other hazards have not been uncovered.
  • Drain your hoses and check for cracks.
  • Take a look up and see if there are cracked or dangerous limbs.
  • Look at the shingles and vents on the roof and check for signs of winter damage.
  • Check your siding and paint for chips and cracks.

You might want to bring out a clip board and take notes or make a to-do list. You may uncover problems now that if not fixed will lead to great expense later.

According to the Healthy Homes Maintenance Checklist found on the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development website, maintaining a home that is dry, clean, well-ventilated, free from contaminants, pest-free, safe and well-maintained is a healthy home. Maintaining your home can lead to financial health as well. According to this Michigan State University Extension article, the first step toward financial well-being is to manage your money.

What does a manager do? She or he manages. There are good and bad managers. When it comes to money, a good manager knows what income he or she has and what expenses are to be paid with the income. Good managers do some planning. You can make a spending plan:

  1. Assess your monthly income. What sources of income do you have or could you have?
  2. List your expenses. Where do you need to spend money?

Making a list of home maintenance needs is a good example of planning for flexible expenses. Flexible expenses are expenses that are expected or unexpected, but you do not know the amount that you will need to spend. Using percentages like 3 percent of your home value to estimate home maintenance expenses can be a handy way to plan. To learn more about creating and managing a spending plan visit the MI Money Health website and check out the information on spending plans.

Making financial changes can take time and be difficult, but results can be rewarding. If you have other questions, or would like to ask an expert, Michigan State University Extension has access to many resources. 

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