Leslie Cain: It’s time to start preparing for fall
Did you know that every dollar invested in home maintenance can save you $100 in future repairs? Therefore, it is important to stay ahead of maintenance issues before they become serious problems. An effective way to do this is by regularly performing seasonal tasks. Here are seven fall preparation tasks to help get you started:
Check Your Heating, Air Conditioning System
Get your HVAC system professionally serviced to make sure it is good to go for fall and winter. Also, check heating vents to make sure they are not covered by furniture or carpet. Most importantly, change your air filter regularly, especially when outside air quality has been poor.
Clean the Chimney and Stock up on Firewood
Dirty chimneys are responsible for thousands of home fires every year. Fireplace chimneys should be inspected at least once a year and cleaned. When hiring a chimney sweep, make sure he or she is certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America. Also, stock up on firewood and store logs at least 20 feet from your home.
Shut off and Drain Your Irrigation System
While you can push this task until a bit later in the season, do not wait too long. Making sure your sprinkler and drip system are properly shut down only takes a matter of minutes and can save you hundreds of dollars in repair costs and water bills. Also, disconnect and drain all water hoses.
While the weather is still dry, caulk any cracks you find in the exterior trim and siding, and around the windows. Polyurethane is one of the better caulks because it is easier to use, can be painted over and lasts longer than latex.
De-Clutter the Gutters
In order to allow for rainwater and snow melt to flow properly, you need to thoroughly clean gutters. Use a high-powered water hose to wash away what is left after removing any large pieces of debris.
Carefully Check the Roof
Cold temperatures combined with rain, ice, snow and wind can damage your roof and cause leaks inside the house as well. While you have the ladder out for the gutters, look for missing or loose roof shingles and fix any problem areas.
Perform Home Safety Checks
Make sure your smoke alarms are in working order and replace batteries at least once a year. According to the National Fire Protection Agency, almost three out of five home fire deaths in recent years were caused by fires in properties with no smoke alarms or smoke alarms that failed to operate. Additionally, hundreds of people in the United States die every year from carbon monoxide poisoning by non-automotive consumer products. Many of these deaths can be prevented with proper maintenance of detectors.
For local homeowner information or to find a licensed real estate professional, please contact the Sierra Nevada Realtors at 775-885-7200 or http://www.sierranevadarealtors.org. Sierra Nevada Realtors is the voice of real estate in Carson City and the surrounding areas. They are committed to building better communities throughout the region and participating in the political process to protect the industry as well as private property rights.
Leslie Cain is president of Sierra Nevada Realtors and a Realtor with RE/MAX Realty Affiliates in Carson City. Cain has been active in the real estate industry for nearly 14 years and is very passionate about the Northern Nevada community. She holds several certifications including Certified Residential Specialist, Accredited Buyer’s Representative and Senior’s Real Estate Specialist. Cain can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 775-781-1386.