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The importance of maintenance optimization has been recognized over the past decades and is highly emphasized by today's competitive economy. In this paper, an updated sequential predictive maintenance (USPM) policy is proposed to decide a real-time preventive maintenance (PM) schedule for a continuously monitored degrading system that will minimize maintenance cost rate (MCR) in the long term, by considering the effect of imperfect PM. The USPM model is continuously updated based on the change in the system state to decide an optimal PM schedule. Mathematical analysis of the proposed USPM model demonstrates the existence and uniqueness of an optimal PM schedule under practical conditions. The results validate that: 1) the proposed USPM model yields PM schedules that are consistent with the change in the system states and 2) the USPM model is able to quickly react to drastic degradation of the system and provide an optimal PM schedule in real time. The proposed maintenance policy can provide significant benefits for real-time maintenance decision making.