As winter slowly starts to fade away, now is a good time to start thinking about how the snow and rain may have affected your home. Doing seasonal checks around your house will ensure everything is in working order and prevent you from receiving a nasty surprise later.
For this season’s home maintenance tips, two of our Home Service Connections partners contributed helpful advice on how to make your home look and feel its best.
Mark Elias, vice president of Mina Enterprises, Inc., recommends “taking a walk around your home to look for siding that’s pulled off, shingles that may be missing, shutters that may need repainting or anything that seems broken.” Another tip he has is to always call a contractor for an estimate before calling your insurance company. Sometimes a small mishap can be easily fixed at a small cost without involving your insurance company.
Checking both the inside and the outside of the house is a good idea, mentions Ron Jacques, general manager of T.R. Young Services. One area that may need addressing is the patio. He points out that “patios may start to settle due to the weather.” Settling is when the stones become uneven and start to sink. Having someone come to address this can prevent additional settlement and water erosion, he explains.
Jacques also reveals that power-washing and painting the exterior of your house is a wonderful way to maintain your home’s appearance. This includes cleaning your deck, windows, patio and siding. This does not need to be done every year. It depends on your home’s exposure to the elements, as well as how long it’s been since it’s been cleaned. However, it’s always a good idea to check the condition at least once a year, if not seasonally.
Cleaning out your gutters and downspouts is an essential part of springtime maintenance. “The weight of snow and ice can pull screws, so making sure your gutters are secure against the house will prevent leaks,” Elias says. In addition, downspouts can cause flooding if they are not extended out at least five to six feet from the house.
It’s also important to examine your hose bibs or spigots. When water is still in your pipes, it can sometimes freeze over and create pinhole leaks, so be sure to turn on your water a bit and check for any leaks.
Several other appliances to check this time of year include your gas furnace and/ or fireplace, water heater, HVAC system, air filters, water filters and refrigerator purifiers. Whether you’re maintaining, updating or planning a total renovation, check Long & Foster’s Home Service Connections website to find a trusted contractor in your area.
Teresa X. Nguyen is marketing and communications coordinator at Long & Foster Marketing.