It’s common for people to wonder why anyone would rent a place to live when they could own one instead. That is, until they become homeowners themselves. It’s soon discovered that homeownership is a near constant battle against the elements. Allow property to go without maintenance long enough and nature finds a way to start a slow but certain demolition process. It is the obligation of a homeowner to be the agent obstructing this process. Otherwise, it’s only a matter of time before property degrades and its value plummets.
The homeowners who find themselves in the best situations after a decade or so are the ones who stay on top of property maintenance. They make it their mission to keep their house in peak condition. Okay, so we aren’t all so proactive – that doesn’t mean we can’t aspire to be more engaged in property maintenance.
Here is a step by step guide to getting started:
Faded paint, broken staircases, ill-fitting doors – there are many home maintenance issues homeowners don’t need the experts to point out. However, there are many others which can easily go unnoticed to the untrained eye. Homeowners interested in staying on top of maintenance issues ought to consider having a qualified inspector take a look every year or so.
Most people only think about home inspections when buying or selling a house. Home inspection services such as HomeTeam are in fact available for helping homeowners find out which parts of their house need attention which may otherwise remain undetected until it’s too late. Their evaluation process involves checking over 400 parts of residential property, ensuring no issue goes unnoticed.
After getting a list of issues which need attention, homeowners need to decide what their response is going to entail. Generally speaking, the response boils down into two choices. On one hand there’s the do-it-yourself approach. On the other, outsourcing the job to a contractor.
Which is chosen depends on a few factors. Chief among them are the homeowner’s home improvement know-how and hubris followed by cost constraints and danger level. Not to mention the tools and other resources required for a job well done.
If planning to hire a contractor, plan on being very particular. Plan on cost overruns and having to closely examine the work being done. It may turn out the contractor is exceptionally forthcoming about expertise, expenses, and expectations – but the planning process ought not count on this being the case. At risk of offending any contractors reading this, the aforementioned hassles are simply too common to leave to wishful thinking.
However, if planning to do the job yourself, a whole new host of challenges arise. Mainly, ensuring the job gets done. Contractors may be eccentric and flaky but they tend to at least get the job done in the end. Homeowners deciding to DIY have to promise themselves not to abandon the worksite out of frustration. If frustrated due to lack of knowledge and/or skills, a contractor is needed.
Major maintenance issues need the most immediate attention. However, if homeowners manage to get caught up on these larger repairs, they ought to turn their focus to the finishing touches. In many ways, the finishing touches provide an extra layer of protection on the recently finished maintenance.
For instance, a fresh coat of paint keeps walls, panels, and other surfaces protected against the elements. A well-maintained lawn and backyard will keep weeds and other unwelcome intrusions from taking over. Cleaned gutters and cleared drainage systems serve to prevent foundation problems.
Owning a home is one of the best investments a person can make, so long as the property doesn’t depreciate in value. The maintenance and repairs necessary to prevent this from happening are an almost endless sequence of obligations. However, when it’s all said and done, homeowners will have something to show for it – just make sure it’s done right.