Real estate buyers eat cost for wear-and-tear items

Home Sale Hindsight

Q: We purchased a large home last year. The property overall was in good condition, with the home being only 10 years old. Now that winter is here, we are finding many areas of exterior paint flaking off; a large wood deck that was painted is now rotting and lifting; and numerous interior floor tiles are cracked and lifting. Should we call our insurance company or just own up to the cost of homeownership? –Paul

A: In the real estate industry, we often tout the privileges of homeownership. But owning a home also has its costs above and beyond mortgage payments and taxes, and you’re more mature than the average new homeowner to acknowledge as much.

Just as it’s a fact that if you live you will someday die, and if you buy a new car it will eventually get a door ding or window chip, it is the God’s honest truth that if you own a home, at some point you will have to maintain and repair something, and it’s not necessarily anyone’s fault.

Obviously, you’re concerned that the home seemed fine last year, but now has a number of items that are falling into disrepair. Several things could be behind this.