What an informational post for us Homeowners. Being a Homeowners is much more then just paying a mortgage.
Keeping on top of the repairs, will keep the property in top conditaion for when you are considering sell your home in the future.
Have You Been A Good Homeowner?
The other day, I went to Lisa with a concern I had about something I had noticed on our Boiler. Now I'm not what you would refer to as a "Handy Homeowner".
But it occurred to me that what I am is what I would refer to as a "Good Homeowner".
I am constantly keeping an eye on things in the house and watching what is going on with all the major components.
Just before the 4th of July, I happened to look under the Kitchen Sink only to notice a small water leak.
In record time I called in our Plumber and found that I had indeed averted a possible Summertime Catastrophe with a connection from my dishwasher that had loosened and was about to separate from the drain!
Whew....That was a close one!
Now I'm a hero for diverting a possible disaster.
So as Real Estate Agents that are also Homeowners I would like to share our following list of the key components that made it to "Bob's List" of things to do!
1. Hot Water Heaters - There may be differences in opinion on the life expectancy of a HWH but if you ever have one leak into your Basement you'll have wished that you took note of this.
2. Furnace/Boilers - You'll find it's well worth the time to learn which type you have and how you can maintain it properly. We have a Gas Boiler and I keep an eye on the temperature & put oil into the circulators twice a year if you have this type of Boiler. Nowadays newer boilers are pretty much maintenance free though.
3. Plumbing - Something as simple as keeping an eye on the pipes in the Basement to make sure there are no leaks that may be lurking could save you from experiencing a Basement Flood. If your drains are slow, calling in a plumber to find out if the drains need snaking can avoid a future problem.
4. Roof - Step outside and stand back to take inventory of how your Roof looks. Are there areas with moss build-up or signs of mold?
5. Gutters - I clean our Gutters a minimum of twice a year. We've attended many inspections where the Inspector has made recommendations to simply keep the Gutters clean to avoid water build-up in and around the Foundation of the home. Diverting rain water away from your home is crucial.
6. Attics/Crawlspaces - These spaces can be overlooked because most people don't have cause to visit those areas often. But at least twice a year, take a peek in those dark spaces where animals and bugs might be lurking.
7. Basement- If your home has one, finished or not, keep an eye on it. Like Attics, you may not visit your Basement often but if you have one, chances are there are some Major items to keep an eye on down there. Like settlement cracks and moisture effervescence forming on the foundation walls. You may want to think about waterproofing paint as well.
8. Windows & Doors - Are they keeping the drafts out? Do they need fresh caulking?
9. Trees & Landscaping - It's not just for fun! Make sure that trees are not growing too close to your home or your neighbor's home. Don't allow your landscaping to go without attention for too long or bad things could happen. Termites live in the ground and love certain types of Mulch. Keep the landscaping trimmed and leaves cleaned up around the house.
10. Fireplaces- For Woodburning varieties, it's important for the safety of your home to have your chimney cleaned and checked annually. Creosote can build up in your chimney and ignite, causing a Chimney Fire. The mortar on the outside Chimney should be observed from time to time as well as this can deteriorate. And don't forget to inspect the inside of your fireplace as well for mortar problems. Sometimes it may need some patching.
11. Electrical - Do all of your outlets and switches work? Are there any wires that need the attention of an electrician?
12. Appliances- Clothes dryers should have their lint traps cleaned after every use. Most people aren't aware how important it is to turn your water off (after each use) that is hooked up to your Washing Machine. Many are just a rubber hose and this item can be so worn over time that it explodes and empties gallons of water into your Basement! We would recommend using steel reinforced hoses for safety and reliability.
13. Smoke & C.O. Detectors - If you have Battery operated types, changing the battery at Day Light Savings Time and Fall Back time is a good way to remind you to take care of this important and simple task.
14. Porches & Stoops - You may have a Wood type that should be maintained by painting or just keeping clean. Your Brick stoop has mortar that should be visually inspected for wear and water seepage.
15. Sewer Drains - It might not be a bad idea to check on your sewer drain as well as springtime has arrived with many roots possibly invading your sewer pipe. You may need it snaked out if you notice your water going down the drain a little slow.
When a Home is Listed for Sale, the Buyers will most likely hire their own Home Inspector to check on all of the key components of the home. However, if you are a Seller thinking of Selling a Home, it would be prudent to hire a Home Inspector to avoid possible problems in the transaction.
Not all Home Inspectors will have the same opinion of course but being a "Good Homeowner" and taking the extra measure of being aware, may just be the ticket to a "smooth transaction".
Even if you are not thinking of buying or selling, keep your Family safe & happy, like I do - it doesn't take much effort.
Just ask yourself are you a "Good Homeowner"?
If you or someone you know is planning a Move or Sale of their home in the near future, call your Bergen County, NJ experts, Lisa & Bob Hammerstein at (201)218-6802. We'll be able to help you if you're Moving or Selling in any of the towns located in Bergen County New Jersey.
For more Local Information about the Pascack Valley area of Bergen County, New Jersey, visit us online at www.HammersTeam.com.
Your Real Estate Resource for the Bergen County - specializing in the Pascack Valley!
Robert & Lisa Hammerstein • Sales Associates • Coldwell Banker • (201)315-8618
• Address • 50 Broadway • Hillsdale, NJ 07642 •
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