I’m a homeowner, and made the investment because I believe that I’d rather pay myself for the roof over my head than hand the money over to someone else each month. Is it the ideal way to spend income on housing? For me it is, but for someone else in different circumstances, it might not be. However, I love owning my home and the freedom it gives me to do little projects and make improvements. Do I love that the refrigerator kicked the bucket in January and took a few hundred in carefully packaged frozen foods with it? No, not really. Nor is the weekly (or even twice weekly) lawn maintenance my favorite way to kill a few hours on a summer’s day, but that’s the bargain you accept when buying a home. Which brings me to my latest fixation – how to save money on home maintenance.
As someone who frequently writes about cost-cutting and money-making choices and options, I often come across scores of articles and tips that would allow anyone to make money on home upkeep and repair and save money on home maintenance. I want to share some of my favorite discoveries with my readers as you can put many of them to work even if you are a renter rather than an official property owner.
DIY Is a Smart Move
Now, when you look to make money on home upkeep and repair or just save money on home maintenance, you have many options, and one of my favorites is to go as DIY as possible. Naturally, I don’t do official tasks like plumbing, electrical or much of the construction stuff, but I do the lawn mowing, gardening and cleaning tasks on my own.
As I so often write about ways to use cash back programs, coupons, online shopping and stores like CVS to save loads of money, I also find a lot of useful tips from fellow penny pinchers about ways to save money on home maintenance by making a lot of my own cleaning products.
I do, in fact, follow a lot of that welcome advice, making basic cleansers out of materials that I buy (usually online) in bulk quantities. For example, you might look into my Amazon Subscribe and Save account, Pantry account or my trips to Target or CVS and see that I have gotten great pricing on ingredients like:
- White vinegar by the gallon
- Rubbing alcohol in bulk
- Essential oils such as orange, lemon, lavender and tea tree
- Ammonia by the gallon
- Enormous containers of baking soda
- Bulk quantities of Borax powder, and so on
With these simple ingredients, I am able to make effective glass cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners, tile and tub scrubbing agents, and even all purpose or grease cutting formulas for the kitchen and the bath. Though I don’t make money on home upkeep and repair with these formulas, I have seen hundreds cut from my budget by whipping up regular batches of cleansers when needed. It also keeps my home as free of toxins as possible.
Naturally, I have also managed to save money on home maintenance by investing in the best lightbulbs. I swapped out all of the incandescent bulbs and updated with LEDs and halogen bulbs wherever I could. It cut costs dramatically and lets me know that I won’t be replacing them for years to come.
Making Money Outside
That’s inside of the house, and I also am able to save money on home maintenance on the exterior in some creative and cost effective ways. One I wrote about in another article, explaining how my front yard was turned into an actual vegetable and fruit garden. Here, I am able to grow the herbs I use (and dry), supply my household with all kinds of salad greens, and a long list of veggies and fruits.
I am also able to make money on home upkeep and repair by selling off any hardwood trees that need to be taken down, growing fruit trees rather than ornamentals (as the fruit trees provide shade, keep lawn maintenance demands low and yield pounds and pounds of fruit each year), replacing fences with hedges of berry vines and fruit bushes, and even giving a corner of the backyard to some beekeepers. They don’t allow me to make money on home upkeep and repair, but they do give me a lot of free honey and abundant fruits and veggies thanks to the work those busy bees do all season.
Now, if you want to save money on home maintenance while also saving time, I would suggest you plant as much edible stuff as you can rather than lots of ornamentals that might need to be replaced every year or several times a season. After all, you can invest in annuals and watch that money disappear with frosts or the end of a plant’s natural cycle. Even perennials are not profitable, though they can be gorgeous and beneficial.
If you are going to look to make money on home upkeep and repair through gardening choices, choose plants that yield something – even if it is not edible. Dried flowers are a great “plus”, but so too are medicinal leaves and roots. Rose hips, lavender blossoms, Echinacea plants and many other perennials can give you something more than just a nice view for a few months.
Remember too that you can save money on home maintenance if you have trees and brush in need of removal by having them taken down and put through a chipper. Then, use them for mulch around trees and plantings. You eliminate the risks of mold, mildew or other potential threats brought in on mulch of unknown origins and repurpose the trees and brush you need to have removed. You can even handle the whole thing yourself since shops like Home Depot rent costly tools like small wood chippers.
As you see, I can hope to make money on home upkeep and repair by saving money first and foremost. I rarely hire anyone to do those tasks I can do myself, and even if that finds me cleaning floors at midnight, it is a cost-effective tactic. I also do all of the outdoor projects that I can. And yet, I have yet to even touch on the easiest way I use to make money on home upkeep and repair, and that is to blog about it.
Blogging to Save Money on Home Maintenance
When I first bought my home, it was the first time I had been the only one responsible for keeping the place standing. Before that, I’d phone the “super” or the property owner and they would handle the issues. Seriously, beyond the most basic issues, I hadn’t had to handle much upkeep and repair.
So, if I was serious in a desire to make money on home upkeep and repair, I knew I couldn’t do it by hiring myself out to others. That’s why I did the next best thing – I started to use any free options for learning how to make more advanced repairs, and then filmed video tutorials of everything I did on my own.
Putting in some fence posts?Made a vlog and wrote some blogs about it. Installed a new light switch? Vlogged it, too. When I installed a new ceiling fan, updated the look of another fan and ran some ductwork for the dryer, I made sure to film myself. Why? If you are a regular reader, you know that affiliate marketing is one of my most frequently recommended ways to make passive, ongoing income. You might also know that it can focus on just about anything.
Someone who wants to save money on home maintenance is going to want to know how to do a lot of those little odd jobs, and yet it can be tough to learn how to do them at the freebie workshops sponsored by places like Lowe’s, Home Depot and local hardware stores. They are likely to, eventually, explain how to do a task you want to learn how to do (after all, that’s where I learned how to put down bathroom tile), but not usually at the time you need to know how to get the job done.
That’s why so many people turn to blogs and YouTube to find tutorials to walk them through the process. Making a large library of DIY tutorials and connecting them to your blog is a great way to build effective affiliate marketing.
If you can’t quite recall how affiliate marketing work, let’s do a quick review:
- You create content and become a publisher
- As a publisher, you can create any number of relationships with advertisers (these are the people selling the products or services connected to the niche or industry you write about or discuss in your blog and other content – including vlogs about home repair!)
- In your content, you speak to your audience (also called consumers), telling them about the different answers to their problems. As an example, you have chosen to build an audience around your home repair blog. These are stay at home parents without a lot of tools or skills, and so your content will focus on the right tools to own (something you can promote through affiliate links), the right handbooks to buy (again, something to sell via affiliate marketing), and even the services to consult when any project is not a DIY service (and you will find services with referral bonuses paid to you or which work like affiliates)
- You constantly seek to build and expand the audience, and you will make money on home upkeep and repair as you film yourself doing repairs, write about new products or techniques, and always add a few affiliate links to your pages or content
Let me just give a simple example:
I mentioned that I had decided to redo a ceiling fan rather than buy and install a new one. I wanted to paint the blades and the ugly faux gold on the “body” of the fan. That meant taking it apart and finding products that would give the results I desired. This gave me the opportunity to make money on home upkeep and repair by embedding affiliate links for the paint products used, the tape I used to keep paint from spraying on other areas of the fan, for the new glass shades purchased, and even a link for the specialty bulbs installed.
I used the right links in the description of the vlog, in the blog content, and in a nice infographic I made to show the steps to follow. Though I am not running my DIY blog any longer, the point is that I was able to earn income, substantial income, just by documenting the process and creating a bit of content with affiliate links.
If you are looking to do more than save money on home maintenance, this is a good way to go about it. Do some research, such as the type I recommended in the “Up Your Affiliate Game” article, and really create a strong target audience. Like I said, it could be stay at home moms and dads eager to tackle small projects during naptimes or preschool hours. It could be retired seniors eager to finally master a few DIY skills. You might target new homeowners in your geographic location or emphasize the “fix it up and flip it” folks.
The point is that you can make money towards your home maintenance and upkeep by considering the many ways to blog and use affiliate marketing and/or referrals. The sites I strongly recommend for new affiliate marketers include:
Look to tackle a lot of the work on your own, and find ways to make money from everything you do. Whether it is expecting to get apples and pears from the trees planted in the front yard, mulch from clearing out the deadwood or money you earn from blogging about your weekend projects, you can make money from home maintenance and repair projects!