It’s that time of year again… 2022 is wrapping up and many of us are preparing to hit the ground running in 2023. The new year comes with many resolutions, most of which are personal by nature. Our team thought, if we made a new year’s resolution list for our homes, what would that look like… and here it is
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Table of Contents
Fix From The Outside In First
This rule of thumb is a critical one. Problems with your home’s exterior can eventually lead to problems with your home’s interior.
Don’t put off exterior maintenance in favor of interior upgrades.
Exterior maintenance can include your roof, gutters, drains, the weeping tile, the foundation, insulation and more, depending on your home’s style and architecture.
Problems from above can slowly make their way down and through the home, resulting in ceiling leaks, wood warping, cracked tiles and even impact indoor air quality.
Keep Water Away From Your Home
In line with the above our next focus is to make sure our systems are doing a good job of keeping water away from our home. Drainage issues are some of the most common threats to a home’s foundation.
Conducting the above maintenance checks and cleaning out our gutters and drains will help do just that.
We can also help by shoveling snow away from the foundation and making sure the roof looks good from the interior by looking for stains in the attic and any warping in ceiling finishes.
Seasonal Maintenance Tasks
It is advised we go to the Dr. on an annual basis to get a general check up. It is also advised we take our cars in for maintenance annually. How well our cars have been maintained over the years impacts the car’s value. The same goes for our homes.
Proper routine maintenance is crucial to increase your home’s longevity and efficiency.
We recommend hiring a professional to do a thorough check of all your home’s major systems. This includes:
- The roof
- HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning)
- Smoke / Carbon Monoxide / Radon detectors
- The basement
- The garage
- The attic
- Any crawlspace
- …and other things (e.g. chimney, pool etc.) depending on the specifics of your home.
There are many indoor and outdoor tasks to complete, many of which are seasonal. One of our favorite seasonal home maintenance checklists was created by the New York Times and can help get you started.
Test Your Air Quality
The quality of the air we breathe can contribute to health problems. The good news is that we can improve the indoor air quality of our home. That starts by identifying levels of indoor contaminants and finding ways to restore good air.
This can be done with a home test kit, or by hiring a professional inspector. Personally, with something as important as our health, we prefer to have this conducted by a qualified professional.
Different homes will have different contaminants and will require different approaches to restore air quality. Qualified professionals will know what those next steps look like based on the results from their inspection.
Test Your Water Quality
Just like the importance of the air we breath, it is prudent to make sure the water we use and drink is of high quality too.
Things you should be testing for include:
- Bacteria, including total coliform bacteria and E. coli.
- Dangerous elements such as arsenic, or radon.
- Acidity and pH.
You can also use mineral tests to determine what elements are affecting the taste, hardness, and smell of your water.
Tests can be carried out using home kits, or as we would recommend, by qualified professionals.
Often new year’s resolutions include changing our habits to improve our lives. Many of us are guilty of leaving lights on all over the house, or keeping our thermostats on high too often.
While it’s hard to keep to most resolutions, with today’s Smart Home technologies, in this case, it’s easier than any other resolution we may try to keep.
Smart bulbs (both indoor and out), like the Phillips Hue systems, have many cool features, some of which include turning your lights off at specific hours and turning your lights on based on sensors. This along with their low energy usage, being LED lights, will help reduce your energy usage substantially.
Smart thermostats, like the Ecobee system, allow you to get the most efficiency out of your HVAC by using AI and sensors to see when rooms have been vacant for extended periods of time, or to know when a door or window have been opened so the HVAC system is not working tirelessly for nothing.
Smart Homes are evolving the way we interact with our home and its systems and with the amount of energy they can save in the process, the cost to equip your home with these tools can quickly be offset by its savings.
Make Your House Safe and Sound
The goal here is to ensure you’re not living with a potential fire, health or security risk.
Besides installing fire detectors, check your house for gases like radon and carbon monoxide. The machines that perform these tests are not particularly expensive and can now be integrated into many Smart Home setups.
Make sure your house is properly ventilated and up to date with the latest safety standards.
Keep It Clean
Everybody loves to live in a clean house but almost everyone dreads the act of cleaning itself and as such, this is a perfect way to wrap up our list of home resolutions.
Coming up with a solid plan to keep our homes clean will have a huge impact on our environment for the coming year. Devise a daily, weekly as well as monthly plan to keep your entire house clean.
It’s best to focus on one particular type of cleaning at a time. You can wipe windows and mirrors first and then move on to sweeping the floors. And also, keep the cleansing utensils like sponge, scraper, cleaning cloths, plastic bags and apron in a place where you can easily find them.
You could also divide the cleaning job among the members of your family. Some of them can do dusting and vacuuming while the others can clean up the bathroom. This way, you can clean the entire house in no time.