According to a survey by Hippo Insurance, 86% of homeowners have made compromises in their lives to manage the rising cost of living and prioritize homeownership. These compromises have predominantly affected:

  1. Dining out and entertainment, with 50% of homeowners making cuts.
  2. Travel and vacations, with 47% reducing expenses.
  3. Personal and recreational activities, affecting 46% of respondents.
  4. Financial goals and savings, where 32% have had to adjust.
  5. Basic living expenses, impacting 28% of homeowners.

Despite these compromises, homeowners are setting responsible financial goals for 2024. These goals include:

  1. Completing regular maintenance (45% prioritizing this).
  2. Reducing monthly expenses (43% focusing on this).
  3. Paying off existing debt (37% working towards this goal).
  4. Saving for a major purchase (36% aiming for this).
  5. Increasing their home’s value (36% dedicated to this).
  6. Building an emergency fund (34% focusing on this aspect).
  7. Improving their credit score (27% aiming for improvement).
  8. Exploring tax breaks (17% considering this option).

However, despite maintenance being a top priority for 45% of homeowners, many struggle to save adequately for it. The survey found that:

  • 44% have less than $1,000 saved for home maintenance and upgrades.
  • 30% have saved between $1,001 and $5,000.
  • 10% have saved between $5,001 and $10,000.
  • 12% have saved between $10,001 and $50,000.
  • 3% have over $50,000 saved.

Given that smaller maintenance expenses can easily consume a $1,000 budget, significant repairs and upgrades often require more substantial savings.

So, what are homeowners saving for regarding home maintenance tasks, repairs, and upgrades? Here are their top priorities:

  1. Exterior and structural maintenance
  2. Plumbing repairs
  3. Landscaping and outdoor maintenance
  4. Window and door maintenance
  5. Design and décor upgrades
  6. Energy-efficient upgrades
  7. Other critical systems upgrades (e.g. upgrade HVAC)
  8. Gas and electrical repairs
  9. Upgrades to protect from severe weather
  10. Home security and safety upgrades
  11. Pest control
  12. Smart home technology upgrades
  13. Appliance maintenance and repairs

Although homeownership can be pricey, keeping up with maintenance and repairs can save homeowners more money in the long run. Many homeowners’ 2024 financial goals reflect positive budget adjustments and saving habits that could help provide financial flexibility and freedom in the future.

 

Article posted by: Pennsylvania Association of Realtors