Home maintenance projects aren’t usually something you look forward to. It’s easy to put off cleaning the gutters to focus on remodeling the master bath. Some home maintenance tasks, however, should not be delayed for long. Avoiding basic upkeep can end up costing you a lot more in the long run. Here we’ve outlined a few projects that you should tackle in a timely manner.
Home Maintenance Chores That Turn Costly When You Delay
1. Foundation Cracks and Fissures
Let’s start at the bottom. Most homes sit on a concrete slab or a block foundation. Regularly inspect your foundation for any cracks or fissures. Over time, as the house settles, the foundation may develop small cracks, especially along mortar seams and slab joints. These openings provide a way for insects and moisture to get into your home. There are inexpensive products available to seal foundation cracks.
If your foundation has large cracks or fissures, or the foundation is bulging at any point, call an expert for a professional inspection and advice.
2. Exterior Paint and Siding Maintenance
The paint or siding on your home serves two purposes. First, it gives the exterior of your home an attractive appearance. Second, it keeps heat and moisture out and prevents insects from invading. Simple maintenance does a lot for the exterior of your home.
Walk around your home and inspect the outside, looking for areas where the paint is cracked, peeling, or dry. These areas should be repainted. Sand the surface down and apply a new coat. For larger areas or the whole house, hire a professional.
Other siding materials like stucco, vinyl, or fiber cement should also be inspected for damage. Repair or replace sections as necessary to protect your home and improve curb appeal.
3. Roof Inspection and Gutter Maintenance
Keeping the roof in good shape may be the most important home maintenance task. Your roofing protects your home, your belongings, and your family from the elements.
Using binoculars, scan your roof for problems. Look for missing, broken, cracked, or damaged shingles. Also, examine the flashing around chimneys, vents, and skylights to make sure it’s intact. Go into the attic to look for staining or water damage. Make repairs as needed or call a professional to do the work.
Cleaning the gutters is another necessary chore, especially if your yard has a lot of trees. Gutters direct rainwater to flow off your roof and away from your home. In the spring and fall, clean and inspect your guttering.
4. Pest Inspection is Part of Home Maintenance
Once or twice a year, give your home a thorough pest inspection or hire a professional to assess your property. Look for mud tubes on the foundation or wall. These are passageways for termites. Damaged wood that sounds hollow when tapped upon has often been eaten from the inside. Piles of insect wings mean the nest has grown and swarmed.
If you suspect pest invasion, call for a professional inspection and treatment. Catching an infestation early limits damage, necessary repairs, and treatment costs.
5. Deck Cleaning and Sealing
This is one of the most dreaded home maintenance tasks. Weather can damage your decking if you don’t stain or seal it properly to protect the wood.
Begin by using a pressure washer to remove any built-up debris and stains from the deck and railings. Once it’s completely dry, apply a sealant to all areas. For additional moisture protection, wait a week and apply a second coat.
Most of these projects don’t cost a lot of money and can be done in a weekend. Tackle one or two a month to quickly get your home maintenance up to date.