Love is in the air in February, so it makes sense to love your home a little extra as we near Valentine’s Day. Making continual upgrades and/or repairs to your home will not only ensure your continued enjoyment and comfort but also increase the value of one of your biggest investments. Most importantly, they could also save you thousands of dollars in the long run. We have some inexpensive home maintenance tips and preventions that every homeowner should make this month and throughout the year to not only give their home a little love but their pocketbook as well.
Your home’s foundation should obviously be a priority. Being vigilant about its maintenance can save you thousands of dollars in the long run. Making sure your gutters and downspouts are clear of debris is one of the first ways to maintain your foundation. Your downspouts should ensure that direct water is redirected at least five feet from the house. According to foundation experts, some homes have an underground pipe to take water away from your foundation. This pipe can become clogged up and lead to foundation damage as well so knowing and inspecting them on a regular basis especially during wetter months is key. Having an expert come out to inspect and repair on a consistent basis can help prevent long term damage and expensive repairs.
Also, be on the lookout for:
- An increase in the smell of mold and mildew in your basement
- Cracks in your basement walls
- Stained or damaged drywall
Get your roof inspected once a year. There are many things that can cause roof damage, a fallen branch, an intense wind storm, and in Michigan, ice damming! If you wait until you notice that there is roof damage, like a nice stain spreading on your living room ceiling, it could mean thousands and thousands of dollars in roof repairs. A leak in your roof can lead to water and moisture in your insulation, mold growth in your attic, and permanent damage to your beams and home’s structure. Instead, having your roof inspected on a yearly basis for a nominal fee, can prevent a number of these catastrophes. Call 616 REALTY today, and we will provide you with contact information for some of Grand Rapids’ best inspectors and roof repair providers.
Get on a six to 12 month consistent maintenance schedule with your HVAC system’s service provider. They should inspect it and do all the preventative maintenance including tightening connections, replacing and refilling any coolants, checking the gas connector and looking for leaks, and finally, lubricating all of your HVAC’s parts for a nominal fee. And besides scheduling the six month check up with your HVAC service provider, you will want to change your filters every 90 days to ensure your system can and will run efficiently and cleanly.
Checking for harmful critters on a regular basis can save you thousands of dollars. You can do an inspection yourself by looking for wood that appears to be buckling and termite excrement which looks like folgers coffee and has an odor similar to mold and mildew. We also advise that you have your home inspected by a professional at least once a year. It will cost approximately $100, but the amount you will save in having to exterminate a large infestation or worse yet the cost of repairing structural damage after a long-term infestation will be worth the cost of prevention.
Inspect your pipes and connections all throughout your home on a regular basis. Sometimes we forget to look under the sink for months at a time, and before we know it, we can have mold and water damage without even knowing it. Also, follow your pipes in your basement and look for leaks and signs of water damage.
Other preventative maintenance that will help minimize significant damage and disasters are:
- Checking your smoke alarms – not only could this save lives, but it could minimize the damage to your home should a fire break out. The precious minutes you will save with an alarm could be the difference maker.
- Checking various pipes for clogs – if you have drains that are moving a bit slower than usual, take the time to get them unclogged before you end up with some serious flooding and serious damage.
- Cleaning your vents– your dryer vent is one air vent that should be cleared regularly. Many homes each year are lost to fire from clogged dryer vents. Also, cleaning your HVAC vents will not only make your system more cost effective and efficient, it can minimize the risk of fire.
- Inspect your attic – make it a bi-monthly thing to check for damage to your attic and your basement. Look for critters and leaks and anything else that could cause problems.
Click here for a handy checklist for maintaining and protecting one of your biggest investments.
At 616 REALTY, we know you love your home and want to maintain its value and functionality. We are here if you have any questions or need recommendations for service providers that will give your home all the love it deserves.
Happy Valentine’s from the 616 REALTY family.