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Old 04-11-2009, 11:40 AM   #21
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Good list, Indy. I'm adding decks to my list since mine gets weather beaten and I don't think the builder used very good wood.

As the OP mentioned, tree removal for those of us with treed lots, though I do most of that myself. I also have an unpaved driveway that needs maintenance every few years.

Carpet replacement and/or wood floor refinishing.

Car expenses and replacement also need to be considered. Edmunds has true cost-to-own numbers.
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Old 04-11-2009, 11:54 AM   #22
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Pets... their medical bills tend to come in big bunches, even for the regularly scheduled tuneups.

I imagine people who own boats can get the unexpected wallop.
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Old 04-11-2009, 12:11 PM   #23
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Our monthly budget comprises 2 pots of money: one to pay for monthly bills and another one for "extras". Sometimes the extras are clothes, sometimes they are pieces of furniture and sometimes they are a new appliance, a new garage door opener, or a new water heater as needed. So small repairs (less than $1,000) are paid right out of our monthly budget.

But we plan for large, somewhat expected expenses such as roof, siding or A/C replacement. For those, we set about 1% of the value of our house aside each year.

For large unexpected expenses (water leak, sewer line replacement, etc...), we use money in our emergency fund and divert part of our "extras" money each month to repay the EF over time.
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Old 04-11-2009, 12:25 PM   #24
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I had planned for new tires on my car this month, I estimated $400-$450 and it was $422 including an alignment. I figured that was it for our extra expenses this month. Then we found water coming up from the basement floor drains when we used the kitchen sink. Not enough for a flood, but definitely an unexpected emergency expense. Our city sewer department recommended a local drain company and he cleared it all out for only $115. I was expecting that bill to be much higher. But then we had real emergency with one of our cats. So far that's been just under $200 and we're happy to pay it to get him better.

That's what the savings is for. Ours is just a general savings but I like the idea of 1% of the house value per year set aside for house expenses. First priority should be the roof and furnace.
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Old 04-11-2009, 12:37 PM   #25
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We had our house built in 1990 and have replaced pretty much everything in it since then. We're on our third refrigerator. Houses really are money pits.

I have a Badthings fund, just like I have an Estimated Tax and Property Tax fund. An amount of our income gets set aside into a money market checkwriting fund each month, and any EOY balance gets rolled over, or has to be replenished somehow.

(I'd like to know where a tree can be removed for $250.00. Nobody around here will touch a medium-sized tree for less than $1000, and it goes up from there).
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Old 04-11-2009, 12:48 PM   #26
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(I'd like to know where a tree can be removed for $250.00. Nobody around here will touch a medium-sized tree for less than $1000, and it goes up from there).
What I do is this: for medium- to large-sized trees, I ask a pro to bring the tree down safely. Then I take it from there. Using my chainsaw, I dispatch the tree, discard the small limbs, cut the large ones into logs that will later be used as firewood, etc... It's a a lot of work, but it was my summer job for many years as a kid, so I am used to it. I usually pay about $200-$300 to have a medium tree removed.
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Old 04-11-2009, 12:56 PM   #27
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(I'd like to know where a tree can be removed for $250.00. Nobody around here will touch a medium-sized tree for less than $1000, and it goes up from there).
The tree was not on our property, it was on common area in an HOA. The tree was partly blown down by a storm, and the rest of it was threatening to come down on our home. The HOA payed about $1200 to bring it down the rest of the way, but the trunk and limbs would remain wherever they fell (those are their rules). So I payed $250 for the tree service to remove them from my yard and haul them away.
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:01 PM   #28
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[as] a kid, and I am used to it.
Because you are still a child?
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:03 PM   #29
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We had our house built in 1990 and have replaced pretty much everything in it since then. We're on our third refrigerator. Houses really are money pits.
Shouldn't refrigerators last 20+ years? My parents bought a new one when I was about 5 or 6 years old and still have it today, i'm 29. Same stove that they bought at the same time too. The refrigerator and stove in the condo I bought last year are both original(1986). So is the waterheater.
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:10 PM   #30
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Shouldn't refrigerators last 20+ years? My parents bought a new one when I was about 5 or 6 years old and still have it today, i'm 29. Same stove that they bought at the same time too. The refrigerator and stove in the condo I bought last year are both original(1986). So is the waterheater.
On average they should last that long.

Major appliances Appliance Expected life in years

Microwave oven
10
Garbage disposal
10-12
Trash compactor
10
Water heater, gas
11-13
Water heater, electric
13-14
Water heater, tankless (on demand)
20+
Smoke detector
10
Refrigerator, side by side
14
Refrigerator, top mount
14
Refrigerator, bottom mount
17
Refrigerator, single door
19
Refrigerator, compact (dorm type)
5
Washing machine, top load
14
Washing machine, front load
11
Dryer
13
Range, electric
17
Range, gas
19
Dishwasher
10
Cooktops
13-20
Air Conditioner (room size)
10
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:12 PM   #31
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Shouldn't refrigerators last 20+ years?

One would think so. We had one in a previous house that was in its 30s. Unfortunately, appliances don't always behave the way they're supposed to.

Every time we buy new appliances, which has been often of late, the salespeople tell us appliances 'aren't made the way they used to be.' Energy-saving is usually blamed for making appliances less sturdy and reliable than in the past. Who knows.
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:14 PM   #32
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Washing machine, front load
11
Dryer
13
Dishwasher
10

Well, there you go. Some of our appliances lasted longer than Alan's list said they are "supposed" to last. Oh, the disobedience of inanimate objects....
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:19 PM   #33
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Because you are still a child?
No, but if I could handle the job as a kid, then I can certainly handle it as a adult, don't you think?
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:37 PM   #34
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The main ones are home and auto of course. I'm in Canada so medical is not an issue in that I don't have to worry about expensive health insurance, but of course there are the inevitable tune-ups one will need as they get older on dental, prescriptions, etc...for now I don't factor anything in for medical at my age.

I track my expenses in Excel and I have a filter for recurring and non-recurring expenses so that over the long run I can have an idea of what they might be. Mainly it will of course relate to housing and I think the 1% of house rule is actually abit high but a reasonable estimate. I basically figure 2K a year over time is about right.

For vehicles, my goal is to buy a slightly used one every 10 years (current car going on year 7) for 20 to 25K. I figure I'll get 5K for trade-in so 2K a year for auto seems about right (which includes unexpected R&M on that) as well.

In my retirement projection schedules (I'm only 33 though...lol) I factor in 5K a year for home and auto "non-recurring" expenses which is the 2K for each plus a bit of a cushion to be safe.
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:52 PM   #35
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Most dishwashers I've replaced haven't been because of the washing, but degradation of the racks inside it.

I've looked into replacing just the racks but it always ends up being close enough to the price of a new dishwasher to just get a new one.
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Old 04-11-2009, 03:01 PM   #36
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Our dishwasher was about 3 years old and the racks were showing a lot of wear. Many of the tips of the tines were rusting and also some of the points on the rack that got the most wear. New racks were pricey. I bought a repair kit on eBay. It had about 80 vinyl tips and a bottle of vinyl paint and for the price it was a good solution. I had to sand down the rusty spots and then glue on the tips (use the vinyl paint) and spot paint the rusty spots with 2 coats.

Here is the same product on Amazon -
Amazon.com: russan enterprises

We have very hard water here. Dishwashers and water heaters just don't last.
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Old 04-11-2009, 03:03 PM   #37
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Hmmm - what I've seen so far in Missouri - weather(ice storms, tornados and floods if you're a flatlander) and big time medical. One can sort of lay off the bet with insurance - but there are always 'I never thought of that' expenses lurking.

House, car and pets you can sort of guess worst case and plan.

I even saw an ad for pet insurance the other day.

heh heh heh - The Pug gets his booster shot Monday.
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Old 04-11-2009, 03:26 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Independent View Post
I made a list once of the things that can require repair/replacement in my house:
Roof
Replaced 15 years ago
Quote:
Doors
Replaced 10 years ago
Quote:
Windows
20 years ago
Quote:
Paint
Vinyl siding 15 y a
Quote:
Furnace
On borrowed time: 1979
Quote:
Water Heater
Replaced Jan '09
Quote:
Air conditioner
Window unit summer '07
Quote:
Dishwasher
Apr '00
Quote:
Garbage Disposer
Ancient, removed and not replaced in '05
Quote:
Fridge
Stove
Microwave
Apr '00
Quote:
Garage door and opener
'98
Quote:
Clothes Washer
Borrowed time: '93
Quote:
Dryer
Never had
Quote:
Plumbing (3 stools, two showers, 4 sinks), both fresh water and drains
stools '94 '98, shower '98, sinks '94 '95 '98
Quote:
Electrical lines (many)
Whole house rewired '97

Quote:
A person who's even more analytical than me could look up life expectancies at sites like this Appliance Life Expectancy, do a worksheet with replacement costs, life expectancy, and come up with some expected average annual cost. That still doesn't include funerals and catastrophies.
Don't do funerals, Hurricane Ike didn't cause permanent damage, house is slowly collapsing.
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Old 04-11-2009, 03:29 PM   #39
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Shouldn't refrigerators last 20+ years? My parents bought a new one when I was about 5 or 6 years old and still have it today, i'm 29. Same stove that they bought at the same time too. The refrigerator and stove in the condo I bought last year are both original(1986). So is the waterheater.

Been here 30 years, 3rd fridge, second stove (was still working), 3rd or 4th water heater.
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Old 04-11-2009, 03:41 PM   #40
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We don't have so many emergency expenses as we do infrastructure issues. Things may not completely stop working but they have pieces break off or they become unreliable or we can live without them for a while. We can fix many things on our own (for the price of the repair parts) but it seems as if we have a list of 400+ annual maintenance tasks.

I don't worry as much about appliances as I used to. After replacing a half-dozen dishwashers and fridges (ours, tenants, relatives, neighbors, whoever), it's frequently easier to buy a Craigslist replacement than it would be to fix the problem. Craigslist has been particularly good pickings over the last year or so.

Quote:
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Our dishwasher was about 3 years old and the racks were showing a lot of wear. Many of the tips of the tines were rusting and also some of the points on the rack that got the most wear. New racks were pricey. I bought a repair kit on eBay. It had about 80 vinyl tips and a bottle of vinyl paint and for the price it was a good solution. I had to sand down the rusty spots and then glue on the tips (use the vinyl paint) and spot paint the rusty spots with 2 coats.
Yikes. For that kind of detail work, I hope that's the best dishwasher ever and that you get another 10 years out of it.

Quote:
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We have very hard water here. Dishwashers and water heaters just don't last.
A whole-house water conditioner will go a long way toward helping solve that problem.
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