Scheduling home maintenance for the year begins with taking more of an interest in the changes that occur in the home. When it's all too easy to neglect the corners of the basement or the floorboards in the attic, it's not difficult to see why homeowners end up with major repair bills for problems that could have easily been avoided. Better home maintenance means improved safety in the home, a higher resale value, and a personal sense of pride in one's property. Start by making a list of monthly and seasonal tasks before tackling the to-do list.
Understanding the Property
Walking through a property is the best way for homeowners to begin understanding the patterns that govern their home. Is there too much pressure being put on a certain part of the staircase railing? Are some corners more prone to mildew than others? Will the plumbing start to act up when too many people are running the sink at the same time?
Taking the time to notice these things and run mini-experiments on a monthly basis means homeowners can make quick fixes rather than costly repairs. Inspections are a great time to photograph different areas to get a sense of the rate at which problems are developing. A crack that grows a quarter of an inch in a year may not be a cause for concern, but one that grows half an inch in a month can be a sign of foundational damage. If homeowners do need a professional handyman for any reason, photos can be a tremendous help when explaining the issue.
Key Areas to Address
All parts of the home are at risk of degradation, but homeowners should pay special attention to the following:
- Filtration: Clogged filters can severely impact the efficiency of the vents. Even mild buildup should be addressed to maximize the homeowner's utility bills.
- Electrical system: Homeowners aren't expected to tunnel into the walls, but they should be checking fuses, cords, and external wires for signs of damage.
- Deposits: Deposits in pipes can form quickly, but there should be signs of a slow down before sinks and tubs become blocked entirely.
- Alarms: Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms should be tested throughout the year to ensure their functionality.
At the beginning of the year, homeowners are encouraged to watch their electrical, heating, and plumbing system like a hawk. Pipes may need insulation to survive the frigid temperatures, or repairs if they spring a leak. Fuses need to be tested and changed to prevent the power from going down during a storm. With all the precipitation during the winter, homeowners especially need to keep an eye out for signs of water damage in the attic and basement.
Summertime tasks include cleaning the yard of clutter, reducing any stagnant water buildup, and powerwashing the outside of the home (including the deck). Pests love yards where they can hide for long periods of time without being detected, so it's crucial for homeowners to keep bugs and rodents away by maintaining both the inside and outside of the property.
The summertime is one of the more difficult seasons to tackle tasks, simply because of the high temperatures. Whether it's an uninsulated attic or the roof, it can be uncomfortable on a number of levels. That's why it's recommended for homeowners to do as many tasks in the early summer, before temperatures have a chance to go through the roof.
Spring cleaning should expand past just the rooms in the house. For better maintenance, cleaning needs to include the window screens, gutters, and roof. As homeowners take care of the elements of the home that they may not have looked at over the winter, they can better spot damage that may have weakened the structural integrity of the home.
The Autumn Connection
Most experts agree that autumn is really the time for all the home maintenance tasks to come together. It's cool enough to do many outdoor tasks, and the season also gives homeowners plenty of time to prepare for the nasty storms that winter can bring. Now is a good time to caulk windows, check the roof's durability, aerate the lawn, service the heating system, and clean the garage.
Home maintenance for Tuscany homeowners is getting easier with the help of technology, so it may help for homeowners to look into the devices and programs that can tell them more about the state of their home. For example, smart water sensors can be placed throughout the home (including in crawlspaces, etc.) that will alert the homeowner the moment they sense water damage. Smart smoke detectors immediately let the homeowner know if the battery needs changing.
Professional home inspections may seem like a waste of money to some homeowners, but they're recommended at least once a year (especially for older homes). From fires to roof damage, professional inspections may be able to prevent some of the worst things that can happen to a home.