Keeping your new home in great shape!
Exterior home maintenance can require several tools. We have found one of the most useful to be a good checklist.
Start at the top -
The roof is one of your home's most important defenses against the elements. If you have problems with upkeep on the roof, you will inevitably have problems later in other places in your home. Some of which can be very costly to repair.
- Inspect your roof every year. Just to make sure your shingles are still in good shape, and doing their job.
- Be sure to check for loose shingles and address them immediately if you find them.
- Inspect your chimney for any loose brick or mortar issues and repair immediately if you find any.
- Check and clean your eaves and gutters. In this Michigan climate, gutters should be cleaned as often as necessary throughout the year. Twice a year is a bare minimum. Once in the Spring and again in the fall after the last leaves have come down.
- Inspect your soffit for any possible damage.
The Walls -
The exterior walls of your home can suffer damage in extreme climate changes. Inspect each one carefully to ensure your home is safe.
- Inspect all siding and/or brick for cracks or holes. These can cause problems from allowing animals and insects access to the interior of your home, to allowing water and subsequent mold to access the interior.
- Repair or replace any cracked or mildewing siding as soon as you find it.
- Scrape and repaint any painted areas of the walls that are not in good condition.
- While inspecting the walls, be sure to inspect the "attachments." By attachments we mean vent covers, dryer vents or dampers. Anything that protrudes from the exterior of your house should be inspected to ensure a proper, tight fit.
- Clean any lint or debris from around dryer vents
- Where appropriate, check that screens covering vents and other attachments are clean and free of larger than scaled holes. This is another opportunity for insects and animals to enter your home.
Window and Doors -
While windows and doors technically fall under the home maintenance heading of "walls," we thought they deserved their own level of care.
- After finishing your wall inspection, take another tour around the house. This time you'll be looking at the windows and doors. The planned openings to your home are critical for maintaining energy efficiency. Beyond that, they are a large part home security.
- Make sure the glass in each window is solid and secure.
- Check for gaps in the frame and potential wood rot.
- Always include any basement windows in your inspection.
- In Spring, get your storm window removal plan together and bring out the screens.
- After you have made a thorough inspection of your windows, wash them. Spring is much more enjoyable when you don't have to look at Winter's dirt.
- Check over your screens for any issues and repair them before installing.
- Take a good look at the entry doors to your home. Make sure to look for and repair any gaps you find.
- Wash your doors.
- Don't forget the garage door. You'll want to oil the chain and wash the door as well.
The Foundation -
The importance of inspecting the foundation of your house can not be understated! It is CRITICAL for preserving the integrity of your home. Inspect the entire area of your foundation a minimum of at least once per year. Check for cracks or any other signs of wear and tear. Repairs to the foundation should be handled by a professional - RIGHT AWAY!
We've covered the basics of what you should be checking out annually on your home to keep it in top shape. Our next check list will cover the grounds of your home!