There are a lot of ways that you can try to cut down on your cost of living. Maybe you are very conscious of your energy usage or are a believer in extreme couponing. One way that many people try to cut down their cost of living is by forgoing expensive, brand-new, custom-built homes for older homes that are less costly. But taking this approach may end up costing you more money than you save. Here are all the reasons why.
An older home is much more susceptible to roof damage or pipes bursting and leaking. When any other damage happens, it leaves your home vulnerable to water leaks. Water leaks in your old home is a leading factor in developing water damage in your home. Anything from mold to damaged drywall, fungus, and structural insecurity are all symptoms of water leakage that require immediate repairs that cost a fortune. An old home is way more likely to suffer from water leaks in all forms and thus require more water damage related repairs than a new home, so much so that it may not be saving you money at all to be living in an older home.
It should come as no surprise to you that older homes require more frequent repairs than a newer home. But if your home is so old that you are always doing some sort of repair work, then you are probably flushing money down the toilet. Your home should not constantly require repairs. Repair issues like recurrent plumbing issues, vent and duct issues, foundation repairs, and any other sort of maintenance that is normal for a house should not be constants in your life. Your home is supposed to make your life easier, not add tasks to your to do list. These constant repairs lead to money spent on projects, and time spent on home improvement that could be better used elsewhere.
Appliances tend to get passed down from homeowner to homeowner, only getting replaced when necessary, and otherwise just going through repairs and maintenance. This means that your old home most likely has appliances that are at last a decade old or older in some cases. Appliances that are that old come from an era where energy efficiency was not at the top of people’s minds. This means that your older appliances are likely costing you hundreds or thousands of dollars in extra utilities costs every year due to their overuse of energy. A new home means new appliances which means more energy efficiency which means lower energy bills, it is really that simple.
When you build a home, you want it to seal as tight as possible at the windows and doors and provide proper insulation so that air doesn’t leak into or out of the home, which allows for better temperature regulation. The older the home, the more likely that things have shifted and allowed for more air loss than in a newer home. This can lead to a major increase in the costs associated with heating and cooling your home. If you do find yourself in this position in an older house, you should consider tinting your windows. Window tinting can cut your AC bills by blocking UV rays from entering your home. This is a great way to compromise on an old home costing you money.
One of the biggest threats that old homes pose to your wallet is the likelihood of unforeseen structural issues leading to major repairs, renovations, or even having to tear down your home and start fresh. This can cost hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars depending on where you live, your lot size, and the current value of your home. You should always request an inspection clause on any old home you buy which allows you to have the home professionally inspected before finalizing your offer. This way you can spot these structural issues before you buy and save yourself the headache. Make sure the foundation is secure on an old home.
Possibly the largest cost of an older home is in losing value over time. The reality is that older homes often are less valuable than new homes. This is for many reasons, but mostly just that newer homes have newer amenities, new materials, and newer foundations meaning they will last longer while remaining usable. And one of the main benefits of home ownership is that real estate almost always increases in value overtime. By saving on the cost of your home, you are limiting your potential earning over time on your investment, potentially losing out on hundreds of thousands of dollars.
A lot of old homes have traditional masonry chimneys, as they were a source of heat for the inhabitants before central heating was a common amenity in homes. And while these chimneys and fireplaces may be wonderful focal points for your home, they can cost you dearly. When water gets into the mortar between the bricks of your chimney, it corrodes the brick and mortar, loosening things and making your chimney unstable. Fixing the exterior of a chimney is not all that challenging and may cost you as little as one thousand dollars to get done. But repairing the interior of your chimney if corroded can cost upwards of $20,000. So, beware of your chimney in an old home and be prepared to pay the price for it.
As we have continued to learn about the materials we use to build homes, we discover more and more materials that are hazardous, many of which have been used in old homes before scientists discovered the harm they can do. Old homes may be likely to have asbestos or lead pipes. These need to be replaced immediately to avoid causing damage to your family’s health, and removal of hazardous materials is quite expensive.
Having an older home may seem like a great way to save money. But old homes can be money suckers just like any home. If you can be aware of these eight ways that older homes cost you money, then you can plan and avoid some of these costs in your older home.
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