As a homeowner, you know there are a lot of things you have to take care of around the house. All the time. But there are probably even more things you don’t realize that need to be done, much less how. Me, too.
This year I’m determined to create a list of everything I should be doing so I won’t be able to let ignorance be the reason for ignoring it all. Over the next 12 months, we’ll discuss the importance of regular home maintenance to what you should be doing to keep your home in top condition. From cleaning gutters and checking for leaks to inspecting your HVAC system and changing air filters, we’ll cover all the essential home maintenance tasks you should be doing on a seasonal and monthly basis.
Because it’s already late January at time of publication , we’re going to have a little bit of catchup this month. Don’t get overwhelmed. Read through the list and pick the things you can get done that seem most important to you. And if you just don’t have time before the end of the month, no worries, start with February which will be posted soon. So, grab a notebook and pen, and let’s get to it!
This month we’re going to focus on items that pertain to our house overall. In later months we’ll tackle specific rooms.
♦ First things first, let’s pack away and store the holiday decorations. You have until the end of the first full week in January. No, it’s not debatable. We find it easiest to color code the holiday storage so it’s easier to know what’s what at a glance in the attic. Christmas goes in red and green totes and the tree goes in a tree storage bag because I don’t want the hassle, mess, or risk of a live tree. And we use these for wreaths.
♦ Create, review, and update your home inventory. Ideally, once created, you’ll update this as you make new purchases, but January can be a good time to review it and remove anything you may have sold or gotten rid of that’s still on the list. You’ll also want to take photos and even video of larger or more expensive items.
When done properly, this is a big undertaking so don’t worry if it takes a couple months. You might get a big chunk done in January, and then do a little on it each month. This could be one of your yearly goals…complete the Home Inventory! Here’s a great article about how to do the whole process.
Whole Home Maintenance Items
♦ Replace batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Ours monitor both CO2 and smoke and are hardwired, but battery-powered options are also available. Go ahead and get one that monitors both because you can’t be too safe.
♦ Change your air filters. Some filters need to be changed every 30 days. Others can last up to 90 days. The price usually works out about the same over a 3-month period, so go ahead and buy the better filters, which usually have a higher MERV rating. Be sure to check your size before ordering!
♦ Take a quick walk around the house, especially outside, and check for cracks or leaks around faucets and water connections.
♦ Check the water softener and add salt if needed.
♦ Vacuum heat registers and vents
♦ Wipe down miniblinds and vacuum curtains.
♦ Vacuum upholstered furniture and freshen with fabric spray.
♦ Clean the interior side of your windows.
♦ Clean all mirrors. Lint-free cloths are best for this. These are my favorites for price and quality.
Hopefully, that gives you a good list to work from. You may not get it all done, but you’ll feel better knowing some of those important things that always get overlooked have been taken care of!
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