Home ownership is one of the single biggest investments we will make in our lifetime. That is why proper home maintenance is so important. Regular home maintenance enhances the properties economic age (the number of years a house is expected to survive), ensures safety, prevents simple upkeep from turning into costly repairs and may even reduce energy consumption.
Having a well maintained home provides piece of mind and increases resale value. To support our fellow homeowners in achieving this objective, Greenwood Real Properties/Keller Williams Realty has put together a monthly checklist, home improvement and inspection routine for you to follow. ENJOY!!
- Replace filters or wash permanent ones in your HVAC system and humidifier. Filters should be cleaned or changed monthly during peak season (based on filter type no longer than 3 months). Not sure how to change the filter? Click Here!
- Vacuum all heat vents.
- Inspect, clean and test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. January is a good time to replace the batteries in all your detectors. We recommend you check with your local fire department on where to install smoke and carbon detectors in your home.
- Make sure you have properly charged and working fire extinguishers in your home. Consider placing within easy access to the kitchen, garage, furnace/boiler room, fireplace(s), wood or pellet stoves.
- Have a plan of action in place for the whole family to exit safely during a fire. Set a place to meet outside so you can count heads. Have practice fire drills especially if you have kids!
- Check for leaks in forced air heat duct joints and seal with duct tape.
- Look for indoor condensation on windows and take corrective action.
- Check electrical outlets for drafts and install foam gaskets to seal them.
- Check and test GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlets to make sure they are working properly
- Check snow removal equipment, shovels, ice melt etc. Make sure you have enough gas and or propane on hand to operate removal equipment or emergency generator(s) if needed.
- Pick one room in your home and make a small change to it…un-clutter, install a shelving system, paint it, redecorate, hang a picture etc. It is amazing how new your home can feel from a small change.
- Review warranties and product material to check on recommended maintenance for furnace, equipment, appliances, and tools. Mark your calendar to track scheduled upkeep and service.
How important is preventative maintenance? Without it, your home could easily lose 10% to 12% of its appraised value.
Researchers suggest that regular maintenance increases the value of a house by about 1% a year. However, professional appraisers are quick to point out any gain is typically offset by the ongoing cost of maintenance.
According to the U.S. Census, over time annual maintenance can cost upward to $3,300 or 1% to 3% of a home’s initial cost dependant on its geographic location. To put this in perspective; owners of a $200,000 house should plan to budget $2,000 to $6,000 per year for ongoing maintenance and upkeep depending on the age of the home.
Not sure what your home is worth in today’s marketplace? We would be glad to provide you with a FREE home valuation for estate planning purposes or just for your own edification. Would you like to be added to our mailing list to receive a copy of our complimentary monthly Newsletter? Let us know. Complete the enclosed Contact Us Form and we’ll take it from there!!
Brian Greenwood is an Owner/Partner at Greenwood Real Properties/Keller Williams Realty w/Offices in Canton, Needham and Westwood
At Greenwood Real Properties our goal is straightforward: to exceed your expectations and earn your business for life.