I have owned four homes in my life, and I can tell you: The list of surprise expenses never seems to stop. Yes, I have always favored older homes, so I probably get more fix-its than someone with a brand-new house. But, I think that if your home is even just 10 years old, you are going to have to keep that savings account stocked with emergency funds, and keep that checkbook handy. Not to be a Debbie Downer, but I think it can be really helpful to prospective and recent homebuyers to know about the kinds of expenses — surprises, as well as costs that can easily escalate — that they may expect. So, I’m throwing this story open to readers to share their experiences.
What problems have you needed to throw money at,
when it comes to repairing or maintaining your home —
things you never really expected, or
which ended up costing much more than you planned?
I’ll start our list by explaining my photo above: Tree damage. A tree on my neighbor’s lot fell half-way out of the ground and onto our fence. We were responsible for all damage, can you believe it. Had to pay to have the tree completely removed (from the point at which it crossed our property line), and I have yet to have the fence repaired. Yes: Insurance paid for some of it. But overall, less than 1/4 of the expense, I’d say. We have spent A LOT of money trimming, cabling, removing and repairing damage — all due to trees on our mature lot. Pain in the a** and definitely, an unexpected pain in the wallet.