07jul10c3a14 photo - office.com /used by permission

When it comes to owning a home, it can be exciting, and it's probably the biggest investment that you will make in your life. However, there are downsides like when something breaks. You are the one responsible for fixing problems. You might not have all the funding to cover several repair large projects, and you might not even be sure which items are worth repairing or which ones should probably be replaced. Here are some tips on deciding whether it's better to repair or replace.

Windows with Drafts or Leaks:  When it comes to having drafts or leaks in the windows, you have to consider a few things to determine whether you should fix or replace them.

If they are newer windows that just have missing caulk or weather stripping, replacing these would be the most economical - fix them and no worries. But if you have older windows that are not fitting well within their openings, that mean's they aren't not very energy-efficient; it might be wise to invest in new windows, because you'll save money on utility bills in the long run.

You Have No Hot Water: If you find that you have washed three dishes and have no water or just put shampoo in your hair and can't rinse it out, then it might be time to fix the situation.  Sometimes the issue is sediment in the bottom of your water heater - attach a hose and drain it, and that may take care of the problem.

Another cause of insufficient hot water is a broken heating element.  You should replace a broken element if your water heater isn't very old., but it may be more economical in the long run to replace an older model  Newer water heaters are more energy-efficient.  If yours doesn't have an EnergyStar rating or similar labeling that indicates energy efficiency, then it's time for a new one.

Upping Your Kitchen's LookThe cabinets in your kitchen are dragging it down and making it look horrible, or at least to you. Should you get new cabinets or redo them and make them look new?

If you have a good cabinet set already and they just look old, then by all means, add a new layer of paint and some new hardware to them. All it takes is a few hours of your time and probably less than $100 in paint and hardware, so it can be well worth it. But if your cabinets themselves are worn out - shelves are sagging and the drawers all stick - then perhaps it's time for new ones.  But if the issue is just the doors, you can have the cabinet fronts themselves replaced, which is far less expensive than a whole new set.

Missing Some Siding?

If you walked around your home and found that a lot of the siding is missing or loose, then you have to consider the choices you have.  After this past harsh winter, many homeowners in the Minneapolis St. Paul area have found themselves in this situation.  If you have a spot here and there where siding is missing or damaged, then you might just want to fix the little areas and move on. However, you should keep in mind that if your siding is vinyl or aluminum, it may be hard to get a good color match, since colors on older siding have faded over time.  More than a few minor or inconspicuous spots of damage could mean it's time for siding replacement.  If that's the case, consider choosing siding such as steel or fiber cement siding that will hold up better to Minnesota's climate.

When it comes to getting replacement or repairs done on the outside portions of your home, speak with us here at Quarve, the full-service exterior home improvement company that is able to provide high quality products and services to your home.  We offer such things as siding, roofing, and replacement windows and doors in the Minneapolis St. Paul MN metro area.  Give us a call for a free estimate - 763.785.1472.