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The Proactive Homeowner: Why it Pays to Practice Preventative Maintenance

Owning a home comes with a sense of pride. It also comes with a lot of responsibility regarding maintenance and upkeep. In many cases, it pays to be diligent when it comes to preventative maintenance. Rather than wait and react when something goes wrong or needs to be replaced, be proactive, which actually saves money and stress. Preventative maintenance not only makes sense but pays too.

Change the HVAC filters

pets

Filters can be fairly cheap or a bit more expensive depending on how efficient. Those with allergies and pets often opt for those that are more effective, but no brand of filter can withstand those who go too long without changing it out. Whether you spend more and change less often or switch economically priced ones every couple months, it’s a necessity. Otherwise, your heating and cooling will be working harder than needed, which costs you more money.

Pour Vinegar Down the Drain

clean sink

It’s convenient to dump things down the disposal but it can be costly and inconvenient when something goes wrong due to clogs or buildup. Homeowners take several approaches but vinegar ice cubes are especially effective. Pour vinegar into an ice cube tray and throw the cubes down the drain. The vinegar helps unclog while the ice sharpens the blades of the disposal.

Take the Hood Filter Off

Kitchen

The hood of your cooking range is bound to get filthy. Some may be surprised to grasp just how filthy until they take a look. Aside from cleaning the inside portion of the hood, you need to scrub the filter clean. Some use heavy duty cleaners from an auto parts store. Dislodge the filter, let it sit in the cleaning solution for a few minutes, give it a good scrub, and put it back in place. Notice how much more cooking fumes get gobbled up.

Check Extinguishers and Alarms

Smoke Alarm

Accidents happen and many can be easily rectified – if you’re prepared. For example, a grease fire can erupt and get quickly doused with an extinguisher or fire sprinklers, as long as you have an extinguisher that is working properly. Similarly, faulty wiring could cause a fire upstairs. A homeowner can address such on their own or alert the fire department. However, a fire alarm with dated batteries won’t alert you of such circumstances.

Survey the Upshot of a Rain Storm

Icicles

Normally, water should not puddle by your home for more than a day’s time. Otherwise, you may start to see signs of water damage or a threat to the home’s foundation. Similarly, check the siding for damage as well as how water drains off of the roof and away from the home. The same goes for snow and ice. Icicles hanging off of the roof or gutter could create a safety hazard and contribute to potential water damage.

Survey as Often as a Car Wash

An automobile costs a fraction of a home, yet it’s highly likely you pay greater attention in detailing and maintaining the car. For example, you probably wash it at least once per month, especially in the summer. You get it serviced at least every three months or 3,000 miles. When was the last time you took a survey of your home? Is it as often as every three months or four times per year? Don’t wait until you need to react. Do something about maintenance now. The same goes for those with commercial properties. Don’t wait – Harster Heating can help.

Create a Sheet

google sheets

Use a free service like Google Drive to create a data sheet, filling it in with areas of the home to check and make notes about what you did or need to do. Also, maintain contact information of home inspectors and vendors that can help you with electrical issues, landscaping, HVAC, etc. Also, use your smartphone to set reminders for yourself to consult the sheet once per month or so. It’s a simple yet effective way to ensure that you actually act rather than react.

Get Several Quotes

It’s proactive to maintain the household and contact vendors that can help. However, it’s smart to get a few quotes from several sources to ensure you get a competitive price. Because a high price tag may have a reverse effect, making you be hesitant about searching for new problems to fix moving forward. While a high priced maintenance bill is a tough pill to swallow, consider the size of the bill regarding matters that are neglected for too long. If you act now you’ll save even more later.

Author Bio: Ethan Murphy works in real estate and enjoys writing articles for homeowners when he’s not working. He discusses the practicalities of moving house as well as the best ways to help your house keeps its value.

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