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June 28, 2021

The Difference Between Maintenance and Repair

Kabinet is the Essential Homeowner App for you to securely keep track of everything you have for your home or rental apartment. We are fully free and do not sell your data to third parties.

Remembering the good old days.

Do you remember the days when you were still renting? When the kitchen faucet was leaking, when the shower drain was blocked, or when a branch on the tree in your backyard was hanging over a neighbor’s fence… You just called your landlord and it was taken care of. Sure, sometimes your landlord took a little time to get to it, or you had to stay home from work to wait for the plumber to come, but you had no worries other than making sure your rent check was mailed on time.

Homeownership is a lot of work.

Things are different now. You own your own home and you have to take care of things yourself. The longer you are a homeowner, the more experience you will gain. Firstly, you’ll probably pick up some skills along the way because fixing something yourself is cheaper than the call-out fee of a service provider. Second, you’ll start to learn what things cost and you’ll ask yourself how you can reduce the costs of homeownership.

Maintenance and repair explained.

While you probably already know what maintenance and repair mean, but there is a key difference that I want to remind you of. Maintenance is what you do to avoid repairs or to reduce how often repairs are required. Repairs are what you need to do once things break down.

Let me give some examples. If you live in a household where someone has long hair, you’ll know what that does to the shower drain. Maintenance is spending $1- $2 on a drain filter and cleaning it out regularly. Compare this to the cost of calling out a plumber to snake the drains because your pipes are completely blocked.

Work smart, not hard – have a maintenance plan.

Go over your house, from room to room, and list all the items that may need upkeep, repair, or replacement over time. Use this to put together a maintenance plan. You could also use the home inspection report that you had done when buying your home as a starting point. But have a plan and then update it every year as you gain experience in your home.

Once you have a maintenance plan, you need to do two things:

  1. Put it in your calendar. If you know that the filters in your air filtration system have to be replaced once a year, or you need to remember to activate the shut-off valve on your outdoor faucets before winter to avoid frozen and burst pipes, put reminders in your calendar so you don’t miss anything.
  2. Make a budget. For bigger repairs or renovation projects, you should also cost out your maintenance plan. You can get an idea of how much things might cost by asking friends and neighbors, getting estimates from specialists, or looking for prices in your local home improvement store.

Kabinet is the perfect platform to track both your maintenance and repairs to your property. By storing your home records and information about previous maintenance, renovations, and repairs in one place, you have an excellent overview of your entire home. This allows you to stay up to date with routine maintenance and plan for larger repairs or renovations.

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