How Your Home Can Pay For Emergency Repairs

Steve Cicero/ Getty Images; Illustration by Austin Courregé/Bankrate

Key takeaways

  • Home equity loans and home equity lines of credit can be an option to help cover emergency home repair costs.
  • Benefits of using HE loans and HELOCs include lower interest rates, longer repayment terms and possible tax deductions.
  • Downsides of home equity financing include putting your home up as collateral and diluting your ownership stake.

As a homeowner, maintaining an emergency savings account is a good way to be prepared for the unexpected home repairs that inevitably arise from time to time. With  emergency savings at the ready, you can

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Pa. Supreme Court Justice Kevin Dougherty received free home repairs paid for by brother’s union, witnesses says at trial

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Kevin Dougherty received $7,500 of free home repairs paid for by the union his brother, John Dougherty, led for nearly 30 years, a witness in the former labor leader’s trial testified Tuesday.

That witness — general contractor Anthony Massa, the only one of John Dougherty’s codefendants to agree to testify against him — told a federal jury he oversaw drywall and painting work completed over seven days in 2011 at Kevin Dougherty’s Northeast Philadelphia home.

But when it came time to settle up accounts, he said, he billed Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical

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Cost of repairs and renovations adds thousands of dollars to homeownership

Monthly mortgage payments aren’t the only recurring cost tied to owning a home. Money spent on maintenance, renovations and repairs, particularly for older houses, can easily cost homeowners thousands of dollars.

The median amount Americans spent on home renovations in 2022 was $22,000, according to home improvement website Houzz. That’s up from $14,000 in 2018. Among the top 10% of homes that spent the most on renovations last year, the median spend was $140,000 or more. 

Experts in residential construction told CBS MoneyWatch that no homeowner can escape home maintenance because appliances eventually break down and weather erodes parts of

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Chester County launches Whole-Home Repairs program

Where does the money for Whole-Home Repairs Come from?

Funding for the initiative came by way of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development’s allocation of American Rescue Plan Act money. State Sen. Nikil Saval introduced the Whole-Home Repairs program in 2022 as part of the state budget.

Philadelphia and its collar counties were slated to receive a combined $40 million.

While $50 million of Whole-Home Repairs funding is stuck in limbo due to the need for “additional legislative language,” Chester County’s allocation was not impacted. The county received its entire funding package.

The Chester County Department of Community

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Here’s how Montgomery County residents can apply for free home repairs

A critical home repair program is offering federal money to help fix Montgomery County houses in dire need for free, with up to $25,000 available on each repair and no strings attached for those that qualify.

The program is using $3 million in federal funds from American Rescue Plan Act to renovate about 200 homes in Montgomery County, said Timothey Fletcher, the Central Alabama Regional Planning and Development Commission Critical Home Repair Program manager.

“What we’re trying to do is give someone basic shelter,” Fletcher said. “… This money is without strings.”

Officials can spend up to $25,000 on each

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