Maine home building, remodeling projects can take a back seat, be put on hold when hungry, expensive college accounts need feeding.
Had six college funds to divert funds to, direct monies to on top of other household expenses. For other “luxuries” like food, vehicle gas, insurances, braces, sporting camps …the normal load all of us carry. But down to the last pup with final year of college and it is all funded, stored away so time to loosen the money belt.
Time to take some of my own advice as a veteran Maine real estate broker who reminds all my buyers, sellers that 1.5 % of the value of a home needs to be plowed back in to the property each year. To maintain the Maine home’s value. And because if many Maine home repairs are let go, the damage from neglect is more costly in the long run.
Where to put the funds, which repairs first or later is like a room full of emergency room sick and dying patients.
Which ones to triage, the sorting out and allocation of treatment priorities to do the most good.
The “eenie-meenie-miney-mo” overall thinking that guides the selection of who’s next, who’s up? Items that are like spending money to save money with a more efficient heating system, beefing up the insulation are no brainers.
But the expensive hole in the ground behind the home for the pool that the kids will enjoy on hot summer days gets consideration too. But from a resale, in Aroostook County land of many lakes, that expenditure of dead Presidents does not come back at the Maine real estate closing. But those happy cousins, time together as a family and cookouts are something you can not put a price tag on. Because as Kodak ads remind “time goes by”. Make memories.
If you are thinking resale, make sure to spread the TLC from the job jar items around the home to keep the place in balance. If you spend the whole nine yards on just the kitchen, the Maine real estate buyer will ooh and ahhh as they come in from outside.
But as they enter the harvest gold dining room with long matted shag carpet, the excitement stops.
The lub dub of their heart slows. Ice Ice cold baby starts to enter the experience. New vanity in the bath, replacing a broken bedroom louvered door, the clouded glass in the living room windows from a blown seal are small fixes that deliver big dividends. If done before the walk through and to gain the oohs and aahhs!
My friend, this year’s Governor of Rotary District 7810 Leigh Cummings told me long ago to remember to tackle the most urgent needs before the college nickel and dime starts. Because projects get shelved, delayed, put off because the money is needed for higher education and all the side drains having kids in college, away from home cause. He was right.
Now it is a time of catch up.
The second floor bath tub drain developed a small leak which gave me a perfect excuse to rip out the old and replace with new. Had to do that project. But being CPA bean counter wise and always thinking of resale is no fun. So lots of black granite weaved in to that bathroom total over haul. If you don’t plan to sell and want to loosen up, do updates the way you want not with fear of market resale return. It’s fun. Let’s you be creative. Stimulates the local economy.
Just did that with a lake home counter top of granite. And boy, do the guys from Extreme Granite in Presque Isle Maine have nice stone, do an expert installation. Their roadside profiling of large drop dead gorgeous granite slabs is like Sirens you can not plug your ears, cover your eyes to avoid. The displayed granite of every imaginable color and texture activated a tractor beam that pulled my Jeep off US Route One. They had me at hello.
After touring the granite inventory, I picked a color that would go with the existing decor and wow, is it pretty.
Practical Maine home repairs are typically how local residents tackle their building renovation projects. But the pride and beauty of a solid piece of continuous granite gleaming, shining is something you know will last. Was worth the investment for the wow factor alone.
What is your next must do Maine home repair? And if you could, like an over tired, sugared to the hilt excited kid at Christmas pick something above and beyond practical, what would it be? Outdoor hot tub? Sauna? Four season’s atrium room? Walk in closet like the movie Pretty Woman with all the built ins? Wall of angled glass, garden tub master baths the kids don’t get to use? A media room, music or hobby recreational addition?
Get busy living because if you are not you are dying is one motto that keeps it plain and simple. And the sooner you realize that relationships with others you know, love around you matter the most in life. It is fun to plan, dream together on the Maine home repair projects. Other areas besides work, kids like travel.
So loosen up with the money, how you allocate time and enjoy living more. Those around you will too. Don’t be so serious I found out is not bad advice. And learning to surrender needs to be part of the mix to keep your life in balance. Not too much of this area and too little of that one. Give yourself semi annual life reviews, make them physicals like important. They are. Become a better servant and learn your purpose in life in Maine for a richer, happier, better way of living.
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