Like in so many parts of life, being proactive around your home is a much better approach than waiting for problems. Understand and address where common issues lie and you can save yourself considerable money and stress down the line, and maybe even learn some valuable skills along the way.
Keep the following tips in mind and you’ll be better prepared to keep your home in proper condition, looking good, and most of all, safe.
Problems can be Difficult to Track
While there are some aspects of home maintenance that are worth investigating for everyone, there are also some esoteric problems that can be near impossible to predict. Sometimes a house might be built in a rare environment, it might have unusual components or materials from a certain time or area, or it could have been modified in strange ways. Each of these can introduce problems that are difficult to diagnose, so we need to tackle these possibilities first.
While there are no sure-fire ways to get clued in on everything about your home, there are some things you can do to cover your bases. The first is to get in writing what the previous tenants noticed or changed about the house.
In some cases, they should have told you before you moved it, but there can be situations when this doesn’t occur. If you find they modified something they didn’t tell you about, it’s good to have this in writing.
Other than the former tenants, it’s also a good idea to ask your neighbours what their experience has been with their environment, especially if their home was built in the same era. Not only could they point out places to look, but they could also help with potential maintenance ideas.
Finally, if you live in an older home and you want to take a broader approach, you could also just go on a guided walk around the city and ask about the history of the renovated and removed homes. This won’t just let you know what you should keep an eye on, it will also keep you entertained as you go.
More specific elements can be broken down by taking into account possible symptoms of existing problems or examining those which every house has to deal with at some time. Luckily, these tend to be easy to track.
Moisture can degrade and erode your house like a few other issues, and the cause doesn’t have to be a direct leak to cause a problem. Humid locations can guarantee an eventual moisture issue, where investing in a moisture absorber can be a must.
These can ensure a safe level of moisture in the air, prevent mold and mildew, protect your belongings, and even help create an ambiance with the addition of aromatherapy.
With a faulty foundation, your home exists as a practical house of cards. This is something that can usually be checked by simply looking under the house, and even if you see no problems, there are ways to ensure that future problems are mitigated.
The best way to manage these issues is to control erosion through spouts, drains, and landscaping. Chemicals and vibrations can also be a cause for concern if you’re close to traffic or train tracks.
Windows and Doors
As beautiful as classic windows and doors can be, they’re also a recipe for drafts. Not only can this contribute to the above moisture issue, but it can also let in extra pollution, and drive up heating bills. Checking these issues can be as simple as rattling doors and windows, or trying to shine light through the edges to detect cracks.
Fortunately, caulking or weatherstripping can usually address these issues if you want to keep your classic look.
While these are some of the big three examples, they’re far from the only potential areas of concern. Remember to check cracks in concrete, roof rust, paint condition, the state of your attic, and anything else you or your friends can think of. You can check a lot of potential problems within a day, and future you will thank you for it with their wallet.