Congratulations, you just purchased your first house! This new and exciting endeavor may have you eager to decide on furniture, kitchen housewares, and which piece of art should greet your guests when they walk through your newly-painted front door.
However, before you bask in the joy of the fun tasks ahead, you should cover all maintenance basics first. Doing so will reduce stress, increase efficiency, and save money in the long run. Here is Curb Appeal’s new homeowner’s maintenance guide that’ll keep you one step ahead of the homeowner’s game!
The first task you should tackle is the utilities. You won’t be deciding on color schemes or choosing lamps if something goes wrong with electricity. Make a list of local suppliers for electricity, gas, water, internet, and garbage/recycling. Get in touch with each of these companies so you’re aware of billing cycles and which day the township or borough collects trash. That way, you have your bases covered for living in the home while figuring everything else out.
Go through different equipment in the home such as the heating, ventilation, and air condition (HVAC) system, hot water heater, or furnace. Check filters and be sure they are clean or if they may need to be replaced. You should also locate utilities on the property and mark a map so if you need to do any serious yard work, you’ll avoid breaking a water line or causing other serious damage.
If your new home has a wooden deck, you should inspect it to see if it needs to be treated. It’s important for wood of every kind to be stained and sealed. You can easily test to see if its time for the deck to be sealed by pouring water on the wood. If the water accumulates into small beads, then you’re in the clear. If this does not happen, then the wood is not sealed and is absorbing moisture which leads to water damage and rot. Be sure that the deck is thoroughly dry before you treat the deck so moisture does not get trapped underneath the seal. You should re-seal it every two or three years.
Don’t underestimate the power of a good labeling system! Put labels on the electrical box breakers for each room in the home, water valves, and electricity powering an inground pool if you have one. That way, if anything goes wrong you’ll know exactly where to go to start fixing the problem and won’t be fumbling around for a flashlight to use on the breaker box. If you’re unsure of where something may lead, consult with a professional so that you don’t damage your new home or any of the major systems.
Kendra is a content writer with a BA in literature from Wilkes University. When she’s not reading up on the latest home decorating trends, Kendra is busy designing her future home, library included.