10 Most Expensive Home Repairs (and how to avoid them)

Buying a home and moving can already be stressful and expensive without having to make expensive repairs. Unfortunately, big repairs do often come up, so how to we minimize the risk of you having absorb the cost of them too quickly when purchasing a home? Well, it’s actually pretty simple… we educate you.

Upon going under contract on a home, your real estate professional will help you schedule an inspection. Your inspector will be able to help you assess the risk of these repairs pretty well. Some repairs can be negotiated with the seller as a part of your attorney review period. See a better explanation of this in our blog “Negotiating Repairs After Inspection”.

10. Electrical Repairs – Electrical repairs can vary greatly from something small like repairing or replacing an outlet, to outlets that are not grounded, to having electricity throughout the home that is not up to code. While sometimes, this doesn’t need to be addressed immediately, it can be a huge hassle when you try to obtain a permit for a remodel and find out that your electric is not up to code and have to make a huge repair prior to the remodel you were planning on doing.

9. Septic System Repairs -If the home that you are purchasing has a septic system, your real estate professional should ask the seller to provide an inspection on the septic system. In Illinois, the cost of this is covered by the seller.
Septic issues can be the culprit of terrible odors coming from your drains and taking over your backyard if the sewage backs up into your home. Issues can range from a broken pipe to a drain field that needs replacing.

8. Plumbing -There’s a lot more than meets the eye that falls into the hands of a plumber. They are the person to call for gas leaks, leaky faucets, garbage disposal issues, and clogged pipes, as well as pipe replacement or relocation. If we are looking at pipe replacement due to a leak or water quality issues, the cost adds up quickly.

7. Mold Removal- Mold is actually more common than you may think, specifically in attics. If you have a bathroom fan venting into an attic, as well as a variety of other moisture causing circumstances, it should not come as a surprise to find mold in the attic. Mold remediation can be a couple hundred to several thousand dollars depending on the size of the area that needs to be treated.

6. Mechanicals- Furnace, Air Conditioning unit, and water heater can be expensive items to replace. It is important to know the age and maintenance history of these items to gauge the likelihood of having to replace or repair in the near future. For mechanicals in the last half of their lifespan, I recommend a home warranty. Ask your real estate professional for recommendations on home warranty companies. Go to Achosahw.com for my preferred home warranty and use promo code Irvine 50 for $50 off!

5. Water Damage – Water damage can come from a variety of places due to forgone maintenance and/or inclement weather. Make sure to check for signs of water damage prior to submitting an offer on a home. It is important to look into the extent of the water damage and assess the cost of repairs.

4. Termite Damage- Moisture issues such as leaky pipes, improper drainage, and poor airflow are all things that cause conditions that attract termites. Termites eat away at wood and over time cause structural damage to the home they are invading. Your inspector will be able to assess the risk level of termites in your property.

3. Windows- Old windows can have a variety of issues ranging from broken seals, which are mostly cosmetic to simply being ineffective in helping regulate the temperature of the home. In extreme cases they can be the culprit of water damage. Getting some clarity on how old your windows are and the expected life span of the windows in your home can help you to make a good choice in your purchase, as well as give you guidance on budgeting for replacement.

2. Roof Repair – Different types of shingles, different patterns of laying them, the weather of the area you live in and the number of layers of shingles on your home will all play a role in the lifespan of your roof. This is also an important question to ask when deciding how much to offer for a home.

1. Structural Repairs- Structural repairs can be one of the most expensive, depending on the circumstance. Settling is pretty common in all homes, but assessing how much settling there is and the affect it has had on the home’s integrity is absolutely pivotal in making a purchase. Bowing walls, some foundation cracks and many other indications of structural damage should be evaluated by a structural engineer to determine the safety of your home.

This is a lot of information to consider for someone who has not had experience with any of this. Look to your real estate professional and home inspector for guidance in making decisions about these items.

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