Avoid expensive repairs – top tips for home maintenance

Avoid expensive repairs – top tips for home maintenance
November 14, 2014

When you think about house maintenance, it usually conjures thoughts of onerous housework and garden chores. But maintaining your home and property is much like getting your car serviced – it can save you money in the long term.

19568098_m (2) web“Houses that are neglected can often face more expensive repairs. By maintaining your home you are giving it the best protection from needing major work in the future,” Richard Gough, General Manager of Future-Proof Building, says. “And by looking after your home you are maintaining its value.”

He recommends thoroughly checking your home at the beginning of summer and the end of autumn, and if any repairs need to be done, use professional tradespeople who guarantee their work.

“A home is a major investment, you really need to look after it and take care of any small jobs, before they become big issues. It’s important you future-proof yourself.”

He suggests doing a full walk around the house to see what needs to be repaired, and also checking the purchasing agreements and warranties, compiling a list of when they are due to be updated and appliances need servicing.

Here’s Future-Proof Building’s checklist of things to do to protect your house:

Roof: Check and clear spouting of any leaves and debris to avoid them caking in drier weather, and causing a blockage. Repair any broken guttering. Look for loose roof cladding.

Exterior walls: The outside of your home has probably taken a battering over the winter. Use a soft broom to wash off silt that has built up on the walls before checking the foundations, cladding, fascias and soffits for rot, cracking, flaking or discolouration. Trim back any shrubs or trees that may be touching the walls, to ensure good air flow around the house.

Windows: Use a good glass detergent and a soft cloth to clean windows. Not only will you see a difference but you eliminate mould and mildew that may have built up behind curtains in the winter. Now that you don’t need the curtains for warmth, have them professionally cleaned to rid any dust mites and deter mildew and mould build-up.

Decks: Patios, decks and driveways that did not get much winter sun may be slippery due to moss and lichen. Scrub with a hard-bristle broom and consult your local hardware store on products you can use to remove slippery growth. Wooden decking may require another coat of stain or paint to ensure it is water-proofed and oiled to protect it from the sun. There are also paint products on the market that meet Future-Proof Building’s Health & Safety Principle, as they have a sandy, non-slip texture to give you added grip on steps.

Kitchens, bathrooms and laundry: Dust and fat build up create a potential fire hazard. Clean the oven, check the filter on your extractor fan, dust the back and mechanisms of your fridge and dryer. Inspect the filter in your heat pump and air conditioning unit. Replace the batteries in smoke alarms. Check tiles and grouting for leaks and cracks. Do any tap washers need to be replaced?

Utilities: Does your water cyclinder need a service? Do you have gas heaters that require maintenance or a wood-burning fire that needs a chminey sweep? Do you have a septic tank that needs maintaining?


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