Spring Cleaning, Budget Edition: Flourishing on a Fixed Income
Everyone looks forward to their retirement, but experiencing an income adjustment isn’t easy. This becomes especially true as homeowners and their houses age together. Retirees may find that at a certain point their homes need minor repairs or upgrades they aren’t able or willing to fix themselves. For those living on a fixed income, a reverse mortgage can help jumpstart DIY projects on the to-do list.
Below, a spring cleaning checklist to make sure your house is ready to go this season.
Pressure washing bricks and siding
You can hire a professional to tackle this task or rent a pressure washer from a local home improvement store. If you plan to rent, expect to spend about $25 for a four hour rental, though costs may vary from store to store. If you plan on making this a regular DIY task, you can buy an inexpensive pressure washer for under $100.
Chimney and fireplace
If climbing on the roof makes you nervous, hire a chimney sweep to inspect, clean and repair your chimney and fireplace after a season of use. They will remove the creosote, a flammable and corrosive material that is left behind from a winter of warm, inviting fires. If you want to tackle this yourself, a chimney brush and pole costs about $65.
Many professional chimney sweeps also offer HVAC duct and dryer vent cleanings. You should have this done regularly to prevent the build of flammable materials that could cause a fire. Buying a dryer vent brush online will cost around $20.
If you are sick of digging leaves out of your gutters every year, hire a pro to clean it, or better yet, add gutter guards so you won’t have to worry about it next year. These guards cost about $100 for 100 feet, plus installation if you have a pro do it. Opt to clean them yourself and buy a gutter cleaning tool for $15-$100, depending on style and durability.
Is your carpet dingy after tracking in two seasons of leaves, snow and dirt? A professional can tackle two rooms and a hallway for about $150 in under an hour. Many places can handle your furniture, curtains, tile, and hardwood flooring as well. If you want to do it yourself, rent a machine for about $30 a day. Those with pets or grandchildren might want to buy their own model for $100-$200 for cleaning frequent messes.
If you’re looking for a way to meet the cost of maintaining a home without dipping into retirement income, a specialist at Open Mortgage can help you find out if a reverse mortgage is right for you. Contact us today.