While it could be exhausting to live in your home like you are always on the verge of trying to sell it, it does make sense to keep in mind several home maintenance steps that usually provide a huge payoff when the time does come to sell your home. Thankfully, most of these items only need to be done annually. Whether you spread them out and have a monthly check in with one system at a time or plan one month out of the year when you tackle it all, keep in mind these ten items on your home maintenance checklist.
- Landscaping and Tree Maintenance
Keep an eye on your trees and walk your property to make sure there are no unruly limbs that need trimmed or any dead trees that need removal as they may pose threats to falling on either your home, your neighbor’s home, or a fence. Keeping trees maintained as well as ensuring landscaping beds are well cared for will enhance curb appeal.
It is important, no matter the age or condition of your home, that you take time to inspect for termites. An infestation could become a huge nuisance and major expense if left undetected or untreated. Having preventative maintenance for pest control and extermination also ensures that indoor and outdoor pests are kept in check.
- HVAC Maintenance
Regular, annual HVAC maintenance is usually under $100 per visit and ensures that your heating and air conditioning home system is working properly. By doing preventative maintenance, you might spare yourself the headache and expense of a major repair. Regular maintenance allows for your system to run efficiently, thus lowering your energy bills over time.
- Attic and Basement Inspections
If your home has an attic or a basement it is important to inspect these areas often. Your attic may impact your ventilation so you’ll want to clean the fan, look over the insulation, and repair any cracks or leaks. For basements, it is vital to check in on your sump pump, crawl space, and that all seals to the space are intact.
- Test All Alarms and Detectors
Not only will regular check-ins with smoke or carbon monoxide alarms and detectors keep you safe in an emergency, but also, keeping these devices in sound and working order will protect your home itself. Always be sure to run regular test alarms. Some suggest doing these monthly on a designated day like the first of the month so you’ll remember.
- Check Water Systems
During your home maintenance, you should inspect any pipes for leaks or cracks. Also, check out your faucets, drains, and shower heads. Ensure that these are all running smoothly without lag or irregularity. Cleaning these regularly can help to protect from buildup and future problems.
- Check Roof, Gutters, and Downspouts
At least once a year, or more often if you live in a climate with severe weather, check on your roof to establish that there are no missing or damaged shingles. Gutters should be inspected twice a year to make sure they are clear of any debris or clogging. When gutters and downspouts have blockages, there can be issues with flooding near your home’s foundation. This could lead to many more serious (and expensive) issues if left undetected over time.
- Reseal Fences, Decks, Driveways and Sidewalks
Surfaces like outdoor walkways, decking, and fences need regular maintenance from both a safety and an aesthetic perspective. Decks, driveways, and sidewalks should have any cracks or breaks repaired as they may pose tripping hazards. Surfaces that are exposed to the elements with a higher risk of rotting will also need regular sealing for protection. If you are in an older home with all wood decking or fencing, it might be worthwhile to consider a composite material replacement if your budget allows.
- Check Exterior Surfaces
Along the same lines as other surfaces, it is crucial to check in on the condition of your home’s paint, siding, brick, stone, and windows. Not only will regular care of your home’s exterior promote better energy efficiency, but also, keeping the outside surfaces clean and cleared off will remove any collected dirt and particles.
- Maintain a Clean Home for Optimal Appeal
One final tip to remember is that besides some of the less frequent and bigger ticket items in your home that need regular maintenance, it is just as vital to maintain a clean home (inside and outside) for optimal appeal. Not only will you be protecting one of your most expensive investments by stewarding it well, you may also find that your home will be more appealing to guests and prospective buyers when it has been nurtured and managed well.