Should You Have an Ice Dam Emergency Fund?
It’s tough to know when to include ice dams in your home-repairs slush fund (please tell me you have one). Ice dams aren’t the kind of thing most people think about until they’re sitting on your roof, and they don’t happen every year.
If you’re a new homeowner, plan on saving extra money and putting it aside for possible winter-weather expenses. You probably don’t yet know how prone your home is to ice dams. I recommend saving anywhere from $100 to $300 a month for the possibility you’ll need professional ice dam removal.
This is especially wise if you’ve had ice dams in the past.
It’s easy to promise yourself you’ll be more vigilant about raking the roof this year, but following through is a different matter. We see it every year: homeowners tell us they meant to stick with the roof-raking. It went the way of getting buff at the gym, cutting carbs, and writing the Great American Novel. Just didn’t happen this year.
What if you’ve never had an ice dam on your home before? You should still sock away a little money if you get that feeling in your bones that it’ll be a rough winter. There is always a first. I’ve talked with people who’ve lived in the same part of Minnesota for 40 years and never had an ice dam – until one day they did.
There’s no controlling Mother Nature. Big snows, warm days, and freezing nights all spell trouble. Sometimes snow piles up faster than you can (or will) rake it off. This happened to thousands of homeowners in Massachusetts in early 2015, which is why we packed up our entire crew and went out there to help. The weather in New England is infamous for being unpredictable, but the weather here in the Midwest is predictably punishing.
I’d love to be able to say there are some lucky people who will never have to worry about needing ice dam removal. But sometimes you can do everything right and still get ice dams. Make sure you have enough money set aside to make the best choices for your home when need be.