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Savings

Keeping to Your Home Budget

February 18, 2015 by Financefox in Savings, Tips

It can be very tempting to hire help when it comes to maintaining your home. Whether it’s a blocked toilet, snow on the roof, or just the general drudgery of household chores, isn’t it so much nicer when someone else is handling it? Unfortunately, calling in outside help is one surefire way of bumping up your household expenses. So here are a few basic ways you can rely on yourself, save on costs, and stick to your home budget:

Instead of hiring a cleaner, have a shared cleaning schedule — Some households spend hundreds of pounds on cleaning services each month. If there’s several of you in your home, you can save this money if you divide up the chores and establish a cleaning schedule. List the essential tasks — washing the dishes, mopping and vacuuming the floors, washing the bathrooms, cleaning the fridge, etc. Then decide how often they should be done, and assign them evenly to each family member or housemate. It may not be fun, but you can save a great deal of money this way, and you’ll develop some good housekeeping habits along the way.

Keep a budget — If you haven’t started already, keeping a household budget is one of the best ways to make sure you’re not overspending. For one month, make a detailed record of everything you spend. This not only means your mortgage, utility bills, food, and transport — but even leisure costs and home maintenance costs like dry cleaning and cleaning supplies. Compare this to your monthly income and your future savings goals. Once you have a better idea of these figures, you’ll know how much you can afford to spend on a cleaner, hired help, or an upgrade in appliances, while maintaining a balanced home budget.

Learn to fix things on your own — That’s right, you don’t always have to call the professionals to unblock a toilet, wash your windows, or clear snow from your roof.  Outsourcing these jobs can cost a lot, and with the wealth of online resources, why not learn to tackle these jobs yourself? There are even helpful home maintenance websites if you’re starting to think of buying or selling your home.

Invest in a few good DIY toolsIf you do plan on relying less upon professionals, it helps to purchase a few good DIY tools, which can you can use for years to come. Instead of hiring professionals to steam-clean your carpet, buy a steam-cleaner yourself. A steam-cleaner can cost as little as £60-150, and will be a useful investment, as you should be steam-cleaning your carpets a few times a year. Instead of hiring someone to knock snow off your roof, buy a roof-rake for as little as £ 20. And if you invest in a pressure washer (from £80), you’ll have your own handy equipment to keep your fences, sidings, and other exterior property clean, whenever you want.

With these four basic steps, you’ll be well your way to keeping home maintenance costs low in 2015, and sticking to your home budget – so you can save for the future.