3 home maintenance tips to get you organized for the new season
Now that summer is officially on its way, it is time to ensure your home stays well maintained. While a top to bottom inspection is required every spring and fall to check for any damage and prepare for the upcoming months, it is important to think of this as a year-round necessity.
While it might seem difficult to fit Home Maintenance inspections into your already busy schedule, the voice of Franklin still rings true: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. What costs you a hundred dollars today might end up costing you thousands later if rain or wind or sun damage compounds a problem.
Home Maintenance Is an Investment
As someone who has moved numerous times, I can attest to the fact that keeping your home in great condition does not just keep the value of your home, it increases it. Making sure that no moisture is allowed inside the walls keeps mold from building up. Keeping leaky faucets from dripping keeps the finish in the tub and sinks from eroding. You can get closer to your asking price when potential buyers see that you have maintained your house with great detail while other sellers have not. So it is worth it to pay attention to the little maintenance issues as they arise.
Keep Your Maintenance List from Being Overwhelming
Keeping your home in great working order can seem incredibly daunting. If that is true for you, break the job into one or two monthly tasks. Schedule to drain the hot water heater in February and tackle the gutters in April. Clean the dryer vent in May and change the batteries in your smoke detectors in July. The added benefit is that you are aware of how the home is being maintained throughout the year which will allow you to catch any new problems at their inception.
Here are a few tips to help you with your essential needs.
#1 Button Up the Ends
Protecting all the items within the home is job one. Therefore, you need to check the roof and the basement (or bottom floor) first. Check the vents, skylights and splash blocks as well as the tiles for any leaks. And keep those gutters clean. Then, check to see if any moisture is seeping in around the foundation or if there are any chinks in that armor that will lead to leaks. If you have a basement, just the fact of standing water should be enough to send up a warning signal.
#2 Get a Basic Set of Tools
You should have the tools you need for minor repairs. The good news is that you can get that set for $200 dollars or less. Get a toolbox and fill it with: a hammer, a pry bar (which is very multi-purpose), vise-grips, regular and needle-nose pliers, a set of screwdrivers, tape measure, a level (your first clue that there is a problem you do not notice is if things are no longer level), a 3/8th-inch reversible drill with bits, and a utility knife. And please, wear safety glasses. The other bonus is that these will help you with any arts-and-crafts projects you want to do.
#3 Know Your Limitations
Jobs should fall into three categories: what you can do, what a handyman can do, and what you need a specialist/contractor for. There is no way to prescribe these categories for you as everyone has a different level of ability. But even if you feel that simple jobs are outside your range, you can learn from the person you hire. Pay attention and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Then, next time, you can do it yourself and your hard-earned money will stay in your pocket.