Looking After Your Home
Buying a home is a huge investment, and common sense would dictate that we would look after that investment so that we are able to sell it succesfully in the future. Sadly, many people put off home maintenance – either out of lack of time, or lack of confidence in their ability to complete the jobs. This is a bad idea, as deferred home maintenance can lead to serious problems in the future.
The following are some home maintenance jobs that are easy to do, but vitally important. Keeping on top of these tasks will help you to avoid some costly repairs in the future.
- Clean and repair the grout around the house – such as your shower, bathtub, and kitchen sink.
- Get your heating system inspected by a qualified professional. Carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal, so regular inspections are vital.
- Following on from point 2, you should check your carbon monoxide detectors and fire alarms frequently. Make sure that the detectors are clean and functional, and that the batteries have plenty of life in them. If the batteries are going flat, replace them immediately.
- Clean your gutters and drainpipes and make sure that they’re not blocked by debris. This is especially important if you have tall trees near your house, as rotting leaves can quickly build up to cause an obstruction.
- Clean your windows and the frames, and make sure that the seal around the windows is still intact. This is especially important if you have single panes or older double-glazing.
- Re-paint any wooden areas, and re-seal your deck and any outdoor wooden furniture. This may take a full weekend, as you’ll need to wait between cleaning the wood and sealing it to ensure that it is completely dry. If your windows have wooden frames you may want to re-seal the frames too.
- Fix leaky taps. This should be a quick and easy job, and one that will save you a lot of money if your water usage is metered.
- Check that your chimney is clean and free of obstructions –watch out for birds’ nests, and if you find one, check with the local authority before moving it.
- Check your home for drafty spots – especially around doors and windows. If you find any, fix them. If you don’t have draft excluders, consider fitting some.
- Check the bathroom for any signs of damp or mould. If you find any, treat it, and try to determine the source. Mould can often be an early indicator of leaks, or more serious problems such as rising damp. Don’t ignore it.
Home maintenance doesn’t have to take over your life, but you should try to run through the most important tasks at least once every few months. Some of the tasks will depend on where you live – for example, someone from wetter areas may need to worry more about treating their windows to avoid problems from the rain, while those living in sunnier climates may spend more time worrying about their garden.