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The Most Expensive Home Repairs and How To Avoid Them


Nov 23, 2021

Owning a home can quite often come along with a few headaches. Maybe you purchased an older home that seems to be a money pit, or you’ve inherited a home and have no clue where to start with repairs, its always good to know that you have options. We’ve put together a list of the most expensive home repairs that you need to watch out for, and even how to avoid them in the first place.

#1 Asbestos Removal

Asbestos is an extremely hazardous material, proven to cause cancer, and also has been linked to several serious lung diseases. Unfortunately for us, it also used to be used as a flame retardant. Because of this, if you’ve bought an old home, you may discover that asbestos was used in your attic insulation or your kitchen flooring. If you do discover this in an area of your home that needs to be renovated, you’ll have to call a professional asbestos remover, because of how dangerous the material can be. Though this is 100% necessary, it can come with a hefty price tag, making it #1 in our most expensive home repairs.

So how do you avoid asbestos removal? Unfortunately, the only way to avoid asbestos-related problems and expenses is to make sure your home doesn’t have any asbestos before you buy it. If you’ve owned your home for a while, or you’ve inherited one with asbestos, you can decide to leave the material where it is and cover it up. As long as you leave the flooring or insulation alone, you can avoid releasing the particles into the air.

#2 Foundation Damage

Repairing the foundations of your house will cost on average £8,500 in the UK, making it one of the most expensive repairs you may have to make. That’s no small amount of money for a repair that doesn’t improve the functionality or looks of your home. But, leaving foundation damage alone is a big mistake. When left alone, foundation damage can lead to your entire home being unsuitable to live in and unstable. This is one of the many problems that buyers will run from, rather than fixing.

How to Avoid Foundation Damage: Make sure to regularly inspect your foundations, as this is one of the only ways to avoid forking out large wads of cash to have it repaired. Checking for cracks and water damage in a basement, or paying attention to out of place door frames, slanting floors or cracks on the upstairs of your home can be a good way to identify any problems as soon as they arise. The moment you see a problem, call a professional. Problems with your foundation will only get more expensive to fix the longer they’re left, so it’s best to stay on top of it and address any issues immediately

How to Avoid Foundation Damage: To avoid foundation damage, make sure you’re inspecting your foundation regularly. Check out your basement and look for cracks and water damage, and pay attention to key signs like door frames out of place, slanting floors, and drywall cracks upstairs, too. The minute you see a problem, get in touch with a professional. Foundation problems only get more expensive as time goes on, so its best to stay on top of the problem and address it the minute you see an issue.

#3 HVAC Repair

Here in the North East, most homes have central heating systems, also known as HVAC systems. Whilst it’s great being able to turn the heating on whenever you’re feeling a bit chilly, an HVAC unit is a costly expense and is one of the things you don’t want to fix. The unit itself can cost nearly £2000, not to mention the labour required to have it installed. If you have any issues with the ductwork, that will cost even more on top of the already high repair cost.

How to Avoid HVAC Repair: The absolute best way to avoid repairing your HVAC unit is to regularly maintain it by getting it inspected. It’s always a good idea to have an HVAC specialist inspect your system every 6 months, or at the minimum once per year. The best times to do this is in autumn, when you’ll most likely be looking to start turning the heating on more often.

#4 Electrical Rewiring

Electrical wiring can be very dangerous, hence maintaining it to a high standard is crucial for your safety, and the safety of your house. Faulty wiring can cause house fires, power outages and many more other issues. You should always be on the look out for any electrical problems that may arise, and you should talk to a certified professional if you do come across any problems. When done poorly, rewiring your home can cost thousands, and can be one of the priciest home repairs to make, as electricians usually have to break into the walls of your home to repair the wiring.

How to Avoid Electrical Rewiring: Keep a close eye on all the visible elements of your wiring. If an outlet or light fixture looks a little off, you’re probably right about it. Don’t hesitate to call an electrician for their opinion. A quick call and inspection will cost you far less in the long run than a full blown electrical problem, especially when they can be avoided.

#5 Mold Remediation

Mold can get into your house in the sneakiest ways, and it’s easy to look past until it’s too late. Unfortunately, mold doesn’t just ruin the integrity of your home, it can cause serious health implications. If mold has grown in an area larger than 10ft, you’ll have to hire a professional to get rid of it due to the hazards it can present to people’s health. This can take some time and is quite a massive expense, often requiring you to replace all of the materials that the mold has grown on.

How to Avoid Mould In the First Place: The best way to avoid mold is to tackle any leaks or moisture problems in your home at first sight. Mold grows when the water has a chance to sit in your drywall or on your floors. Take care of any leaks as soon as you notice them, and make sure you’re stopping leaks at their source.

#6 Roofing

Replacing your roof can be one of the most expensive repairs you may ever have to make. A new roof costs thousands of pounds, and is obviously a very necessary part of your home. Having a faulty roof on your home can lead to interior leaks that can cause water damage and mold, if you leave these untouched for too long, you’ll likely have to replace the entire thing, rather than just repairing the damage.

How to Avoid Re-Roofing Your Home: The good news is that the average roof can last as long as 25 years. Luckily, for many homeowners, this is an avoidable expense as long as you keep up on regular maintenance and inspect your roof regularly. Try to fix the small problems as soon as physically possible, and your roof is likely to last a lot longer, saving you money in the long run.

#7 Sewer Pipe and Plumbing Problems

These types of problems with your home are notoriously difficult and expensive to resolve. The bad news is, most of the time these problems are out of sight, making it extremely difficult to tell what’s going on until something bursts and it’s too late. Remembering that the council are only responsible for the sewer pipes up to the end of the street. Anything on your property is your responsibility, so it’s a good idea to have it checked regularly.

How to Avoid Sewer Pipe and Plumbing Problems: When trying to avoid these sorts of problems, your best option is to have it inspected, we’d recommend once per year. Tree roots can clog or damage pipes, so the best way to avoid crisis is to have a professional inspect it. The same logic applies to the plumbing in your home, if you see a leak, call a professional. Another good idea is to have it checked just before winter kicks in, as that’s when most plumbing problems tend to show their face.

#8 Fallen Tree Damage

It should be no surprise that if a tree falls over onto your home, it will cause a massive amount of damage, not to mention the hazard it causes to your family’s safety. This particular type of damage is so costly because it’s not limited to a single part of your home. When a tree falls, it’s likely to take out parts of your roof, electrical wiring, plumbing, parts of your HVAC system and more.

How to Avoid Fallen Tree Damage: Start by taking out any potentially dangerous trees. If there is a large tree overhanging your roof or a part of your house, you should look into getting it removed, or as a bare minimum, getting it cut back. One of the key issues to look out for is dead trees, as when they die they wont have a live root system to keep them in the ground during high winds. Dead trees should be taking down as soon as possible if they are in reaching distance of your home.

#9 Fire or Smoke Damage

A reported 50% of home fires in the UK are caused by cooking appliances, something that everyone has in their home. Fire and smoke damage are some of the most costly repairs to make, as they require total replacement of the damaged areas. Smoke can affect the air quality of your home, because of this it can be responsible for a large portion of the repair expenses you’ll have to make after a home fire.

How to Avoid Fire or Smoke Damage: To avoid fires caused by cooking appliances, make sure to unplug them when not in use, and never leave them unattended whilst they’re on. Unfortunately, cooking is something that everyone needs to do, and often times we can forget the danger that comes with having open flames within your home. Changing the batteries in your smoke detectors is also the easiest and least expensive way to avoid a house fire.

If you’ve found one of these major issues in your North East home, know that you have options. If you simply don’t have the money or time to make those repairs before you sell, North East House Buyers can help. As a local real estate investor dedicated to our community, we offer North East homeowners like you a variety of options to help them get out of debt, get their home back in shape, and move on with their lives. If you have questions about a troublesome home, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re here to help.