The start of a new year probably means you made a list of goals. Call them resolutions. Call it brainstorming or a non-binding to-do list. Call it whatever you like, but chances are the list included some type
of home improvement project. Maybe it’s redoing your extra bathroom so your Christmas guests aren’t as cramped next year. Maybe it’s creating a designated play area or room, so you stop tripping over the toys littering the floor.
While you’re tackling those big resolutions, remember it’s routine maintenance that helps your home thrive each year. Some routine maintenance is pretty commonly advised: change the air filter, test the fire alarms, check the fire extinguisher, have the HVAC serviced, check for leaky pipes and faucets, cut trees and shrubs back, clean out the dryer vent and clear the gutters. Check out a few others that may have not made it on your list:
Take a flat-head screwdriver and begin tapping decks, fences or any other outdoor wooden structure to check for wood rot. HouseLogic.com by the National Association of REALTORS® advises if the screwdriver goes further than a quarter of an inch into the wood, you probably have wood rot. Pay special attention to areas close to the ground. It’s much easier to replace one plank on a deck than have to rebuild it because water is causing structural issues.
When’s the last time you looked to see if any windows in your home are leaking? If it hasn’t been in the last few months, now’s the time. If you have metal or vinyl windows, weep holes are designed to drain water from the windows. If they are clogged with leaves, they aren’t going to be able to do that effectively. Even if you have other types of windows, debris around windows can cause staining and other issues.
Your refrigerator is a hero. It’s been tasked with keeping the milk cold even on Gulf Coast days where the temperature tops 100 degrees. Do it a favor and clean its refrigerating coils. The dust and dog hair make it inefficient and can cause the need for repairs. You can even buy a coil cleaning brush for less than $10 on Amazon.com. Couple that with vacuuming, and your refrigerator may send you a thank you card.
It could take a few weekends to tackle the routine maintenance projects mentioned here, but that time investment could pay dividends in saved home repair costs. Set your home up for success this next year.