Home Ownership 101: Yearly Exterior Maintenance

While you do not always have or want projects to do on your house, you will always have yearly maintenance to keep your house looking good and in order. The goal of this article is to show you what exterior maintenance needs to be accomplished every year to make sure you protect your house and avoid small issues turning into major problems.

Always remember, the early you catch and fix a problem, the cheaper and easier it is. If you go year after year without inspecting your house and doing normal maintenance, you may be surprised at what you find and need to repair. Here is a list of common exterior maintenance any homeowner should consider doing to be proactive and help prevent issues from occurring to their home.

Gutters
Along the edges of your roofs your gutters serve to run water from your roof to the edges and away from your house. The reason they are there is that overtime, rain can cause damage to your foundation if it runs off your roof and pounds the ground beneath. Eventually, the rain will soak down and cause your foundation to shift which translates to big money for repairs.

Keeping your gutters clean means to grab out your ladder, reach in and pull out all the twigs, leaves and whatever else has managed to find its way in there. If your house has gutters that are filled up, the rain will backup in the gutter and can eventually get under flashing and shingles causing water damage to your house.

Paint
This should not be needed every year, but it is good to walk around and look at your house for any places that look in need of paint. Paint serves to protect the wood from the elements but overtime will break down due to the elements beating on it. A fresh coat now and again can protect and prolong the life of wood used for your house or trim.

Windows
Inspect your windows to make sure they are sealing tight and not allowing any water or moisture to enter into your home. If it seems that they are, you will need to calk the issue to help reseal and stop the moisture from entering. Many people spend extra on their energy bills due to windows with bad seals allowing their heat and air conditioning to escape all year round.

Roof
A quick inspection is all it will take to know that your roof is doing fine. If possible, climb out on your roof and walk around. Look for any shingles that are out of place or missing, blacktop that is aged in need of repair or flashing that is out of place. Your roof protects your house from the elements and is one of the most expensive projects on the house to replace. Doing yearly repairs and maintenance can help prolong the life of a roof and keep your house safe from the elements.

Fencing
It only takes a few minutes to walk around your yard and inspect your fence for any flaw. Loose Boards? Sagging posts? Chipping paint? By simply identifying a small issue you can stop it from expanding into a costly one.

Landscaping
Inspect your landscape for any trees that may be hanging over your home. If you have any, you may want to consider taking down any branches that if broken off, could cause damage to your home. Also, keeping your shrubs around your house cut down to well below your window height helps promote security in your home.

Driveway
Cracks forming in your pavement? You should think about resealing your driveway. It is an inexpensive project that you could do on your own. All you need to do is buy a can of sealer and spread it over the cracked areas. It works to seal it and stop the cracks from expanding which helps to prolong the life of your driveway.

This is just a list of yearly maintenance that applies to almost ever house, keep in mind that your house may have more specific needs depending on its location and any features it may have. If you complete this list year in and year out, you will end up spending less money and living headache free. Houses are expensive and having to replace large portions can be a constant drain on your finances, by completing yearly maintenance you can prolong the life of your household and help protect it from damage.

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