Saving Money With Home Maintenance Tips

Basic home maintenance is something many homeowners do not do.  As a homeowner, we repair when something breaks, but other than that, we leave our house as is unless we are doing some remodeling. Preventive home maintenance is not expensive, but when something breaks, the expense of fixing it can be a bit high.  To keep your home “healthy” follow the links below for tips on what to look for when doing this preventive home maintenance.


10 Quick Home Maintenance Tips

Excerpted from the Popular Mechanics book When Duct Tape Just Isn’t Enough, published by Hearst Books/Sterling Publishing.

Home maintenance isn’t restricted to repairs. In fact, certain tasks–when performed regularly–may actually prevent things from breaking in the first place. But when things do go wrong (and it’s inevitable that they do), we have some backup plans that you can try before you grab the phone to call for pro. Appliances and plumbing are the most frequent offenders, but they also often can be the simplest to care for. From the gutters to the living room carpet, there’s a reliable method for keeping every part of your home clean, safe, and well maintained.

The quickest fix is to not have the problem in the first place. Here’s a checklist of items every homeowner should get to regularly.

1. Test your garage door opener monthly to ensure that it reverses when it hits an obstruction or when its sensor beam is interrupted.


12 Causes and Cures for Common Home Maintenance Problems

Your house sometimes acts as if it’s alive — making strange sounds, emitting odd odors, and giving visual cues that say something might be amiss.

Here’s how to interpret what your house is trying to tell you, and how to recognize the early warnings of common home maintenance problems that are easily solved if caught early:

1. Peeling Exterior Paint

Cause: Moisture is probably getting underneath the paint, perhaps from a leaking gutter overhead or from a steamy bathroom on the other side of the wall.

Cure: If you catch the problem right away, you might just need to address the moisture issue and then scrape off the loose paint, prime bare spots, and repaint that wall, for a total of a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. Delay too long and the siding might rot. Patching and repainting the whole house could cost $10,000.

To prevent a chronically steamy bathroom, install a new ventilation fan with a humidity-sensing switch that automatically exhausts moisture-laden air. Cost is about $250.

2. Flickering Lights

Cause: If only a single bulb flickers, it might be loose in its socket or in need of replacement. If lights always dim when the refrigerator or other appliance turns on, the circuit might be overloaded. If groups of lights flicker, connections at the electrical panel or elsewhere might be loose, causing power to arc — or jump — over the gaps. Arcing is a serious problem; it starts fires.


Keep Your House in Tip-Top Shape: An Incredibly Handy Home Maintenance Checklist

Update: One of our commenters, Brandon Beeson, was kind enough to put this into a Google Doc as a checklist. Click here to access that documentFeel free to print and use as needed! Thanks Brandon!

When buying a home, most people probably first think of the financial responsibility. Don’t let yourself forget, however, about the time and labor that home ownership also requires. Just like regular oil changes for your car keep your engine happy and healthy, keeping up with regular home maintenance tasks will keep you from future headaches and wasted money.

It can be intimidating to think about these various tasks, especially if you’re a new homeowner. It’s a long list — there’s no denying that. The good news is that you can do the majority of it on your own without much experience. Google is your best friend, and if you really get stuck, call up your local handyman to help you out.

In order to maximize your efficiency and actually get all of these tasks done, you might want to create a home maintenance calendar for yourself. Whether online or on paper, you can jot down small, regular tasks for each weekend and not be too overwhelmed. We’ve listed tasks that need to be done monthly, quarterly, and biannually. We’ve also given you a list of tasks to be completed seasonally. Not every expert agrees as to which task needs to be done in which season, so this isn’t a black and white list, necessarily. Do what works for you and your schedule, and as long as all these things get accomplished, your home will be happy for years and years to come.


What to Look For When Hiring A Contractor

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To acquire a license to be a general contractor is different in different states.  Georgia for example requires you to have a license if the work exceeds $2,500.  You need to have a net worth of at least $150,000 and to pass the Georgia Business and Law exam.  Every state is different and if you are thinking about obtaining a  general contractors license you would be wise to be prepared and find out what you need to do before printing business cards or other type of printed advertisements.

Follow the links below for more information about this topic.


Research your contractor before you hire

CHARLESTON, SC -The city of Charleston gives you three main requirements you need when hiring a contractor. Without these, it is harder for you to ensure they repair your home to your standards.

After hurricane Hugo, the city of Charleston got stricter on their requirements for contractors working on homes like the ones that me saw high floodwaters last week.

First, it is important that a contractor be licensed in the state of South Carolina.

Second, if you live in the City of Charleston they must have a city business license.

Lastly, all contractors should have a separate permit that allows them to work in a floodplain if you live in one.

It’s important to follow these guidelines so that you can get help from the city if your contractor does not do a good job.


Angie’s List: How to Hire a Contractor

Talk to homeowners who’ve remodeled and 8 out of 10 may tell you how hard it was to find the right contractor or provide stories about what went wrong. Angie’s Hicks, founder of Angie’s List, has spent 20 years helping people hire the right company the first time, and she shares her best hiring advice in this report.

“I hate to hear bad contractor stories because I hear so many good ones! What is important for consumers to remember is once they pick their contractor, take the time to outline all the details of their project because it can be time very well spent,” said Angie Hicks.

Angie says good hiring starts with a three-step process: get at least three written estimates; check references and credentials; and negotiate a contract that ties payment to progress. Never hire based solely on an advertisement or recommendation and don’t pay too much too soon.


Top 8 Pro Tips on How to Hire a Contractor

This Old House general contractor Tom Silva shares eight tips to selecting and working with a qualified contractor.

Get Recommendations

Start with your friends and family and then check in with the National Association of the Remodeling Industry for a list of members in your area. You can also talk with a building inspector, who’ll know which contractors routinely meet code requirements, says This Old House general contractor Tom Silva, or pay a visit to your local lumberyard, which sees contractors regularly and knows which ones buy quality materials and pay their bills on time.

Hiring a contractor? Here’s what you need to know

Word of mouth and a good rapport go a long way when you’re hiring anyone for anything — but if you’re deciding on a contractor, you should go a few steps further. If you communicate well with each other, you’ll save a lot of emotional stress as the project progresses.

Check the paperwork

Most home project contractors aren’t required by the state to be licensed, but most reputable ones are registered, says Karen Watkins, executive officer of the Building Industry Association of Lancaster County. Legislation passed in 2008 requires home improvement contractors who do more than $5,000 of work annually to register with the state’s Office of Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.


The “Reality” of Home Improvement

stock-photo-9454196-mold-growing-in-basement-bathroomMany people don’t have a good understanding of the normal home improvement or repair process.  It has a beginning, a middle and an end.  I blame HGTV.  Their shows focus on the middle (the renovation) and the end (the big reveal).  They leave out the most important part, the beginning (finding a good contractor).

The reality of your home improvement or repair project will be very different from the “reality” of what you see on TV.  What happens on the screen isn’t what’s likely to happen in your home.  Many people shrug and say, “Sure, I know that.”  But, do they really?

Unforeseen problems (the middle of the process) are normal for home repairs, and these shows are good at highlighting them.  The hallmarks of any good home improvement show are the “finding the problems” moments (i.e., bees in the wall, rotten sub-floor, leaking pipes, over loaded electrical box).  These problems usually add time and money to the renovation, as well as drama. 

The problems are fixed and there’s a happy ending to the process.  We see a beautiful basement, bathroom, house, yard, kitchen, etc.  The time, money and drama paid off and most of the home owners are happy.

But, what’s left out of these shows is the beginning.  A good beginning to any project is what makes the difference between a successful one and one from hell.  They’ve left out the part where you have to find a good contractor.  They already have a capable contractor, because they know that’s the key. 

The start of a renovation is not when the crew first digs a hole, paints a wall or hammers a nail.  It starts with your job — with you doing the work of finding a competent contractor.  Because, the reality of any project is that one of the most difficult parts of it, often the most difficult, is finding one. 

Reality home improvement shows do the beginning of the process off camera; they already have a reliable contractor and crew in place.  They’re the real heroes of the show, as anyone who has ever done any renovations or repairs knows.  So, if you want a successful renovation, adjust your perception of “reality” and first do the work of finding your own real world star.


Nicole Abbott is a writer, business consultant and psycho-therapist with over 20 years of experience in the fields of mental health, business and addiction.  She’s an educator, coach, lecturer, trainer and facilitator — who has conducted over 200 workshops, trainings, presentations, college classes and seminars. 

Tips For A Dry Basement

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The cost associated with waterproofing your basement depends on which company you are contacting about doing the job in your home.  There are many companies out there that selling you expensive over inflated solutions to waterproof your basement is their norm.  Scaring homeowners into thinking that if you do not sign the contract that day, the sale price will go up, mold in the basement will triplicate overnight, and many other scary tactics that have no place in business.  Well known companies that spend a lot of money in advertising may not offer the best price nor the solution that is more logical for your home and wallet. Contact us and check our BBB rating before you signed the contract elsewhere.  We will be happy to talk to you.


Basement Waterproofing Tips

Basement leaks are easy to prevent and even fix without taking a bath.
In the 20 years I spent as a professional home inspector, the top three problems my home-buying clients were concerned about can best be summed up this way:  water, water and water!  Waterproofing your home is the surest way to make sure buyers stay interested.

While leaks through roofs, pipes and basements are constant concerns, a wet, leaking basement always ranked highest as the home improvement problem most likely to send buyers running for the nearest open house.

Whether you are a buyer, seller or owner of a home, wet basements are always a concern. Not only is a wet basement unusable, flooded foundations can be seriously weakened and toxic mold–the newest threat to residential indoor air quality–can fester faster when an ample supply of water lies just underfoot.

The good news about these unplanned indoor pools is this: while wet basements are often thought of as one of life’s biggest home repair headaches, they are generally easy and inexpensive to fix. Yes, that’s right–easy and inexpensive!

The wrong way to waterproof a wet basement.  Ask 10 people how to fix a wet basement and you’re likely to get answers that include use of jackhammers to break up basement floors, backhoes to dig out dirt from foundation walls, sump pumps that have to be wired and plumbed, and other such drastic and expensive measures.

While these solutions may seem to make sense, they all attempt the impossible: to seal a foundation so tightly that it will somehow hold off water like a boat. Well, unless your house is a house boat, it won’t float, so you might as well stop thinking about all the ways to keep it from doing that.


WATERPROOFING YOUR BASEMENT

Read these tips and instructions carefully on how to waterproof your basement. Following the procedures outlined in this document will help you end up with a more satisfactory job-with less waste and effort. Inside this brochure you will find information about:

  • Stopping Leaks and Seepage
  • Repairing Holes and Cracks Before Waterproofing
  • Closing Cracks and Holes When Water is Entering Under Pressure
  • Waterproofing the Wall and Floor After Making Patching and Repairs
  • Packing a Leaking Floor Join

STOPPING LEAKS AND SEEPAGE

  • If you’re bothered with leaks or seepage through your basement floor or walls, the problem can be solved. However, it takes time and effort, and you have to do the job right. But it can be done.
  • There are three basic causes of seepage and cracks in basements. First, the original workmanship may be poor. Second, the house may have settled, causing cracks in either the floor or walls. Finally, water pressure from the outside may have built up and be forcing water through the walls.
  • Such leaks are easy to detect (see image). Moisture often begins to seep through at the area where the floor and walls joins or along cracks that may appear in the wall or floor.

Humidity Control & Ventillation

How the System Works

The unique, patented Humidex moisture control and ventilation unit will:

EXPEL moisture, gases, toxins, and pollutants
REPLENISH the polluted, damp air with healthy, dry air
VENTILATE the basement air to the exterior of the home

Unlike a conventional dehumidifier which does not exchange or ventilate the air, the Humidex unit will provide a healthier, drier and more comfortable home at a fraction of the cost… it operates on about the same amount of energy as a 40watt light bulb!

The quiet yet powerful Humidex system draws in moist air and contaminated indoor pollutants and expels them safely from the home. This unhealthy air is then replaced with fresher air drawn downward from the upper levels. Replenishment air comes from the outdoors and enters the home naturally via windows, doors, and other openings. In essence, Humidex not only provides the home with much needed healthier outdoor air, it creates crucial ventilation within the home which inhibits the growth of molds and reduces moisture related problems.


Basement Waterproofing And Foundation Repairs

One of the many concerns facing homeowners during this time of year is the accumulation of rain hurricanes bring and the approaching snow that will certainly bring moisture and water into and around their homes.  Having a sump pump in working order can help you stay on top of things.  If you haven’t use the sump pump in a while, it’s a good idea to make sure it works, that is free of debris, that is plugged and the battery backup is working properly. Waterproofing your basement  is probably the best solution if you are having water damage and water accumulation in your basement. Do you need a free, hassle free consultation? Contact us, we will be happy to talk to you.


Does your finished basement have seepage? Does water find a way in, and make you wonder if you need foundation repair?

A wet basement can be a homeowner’s nightmare.

From a finished basement that’s soaked to an unfinished basement with persistent leaks or dampness — water is no friend to your home.

If you’ve experienced leaking walls, floors or cracks in your home’s basement, it’s likely you need the help of an experienced basement waterproofing contractor to devise a basement solution.

But you’ll quickly find there are a variety of choices in basement waterproofing repairs or systems designed to tackle the problem, as well as opinions about which one is the most effective.

How’s the water getting in the basement?

If you’re noticing water in your basement, investigating the solution should start outside your home. Make sure all your home’s gutters, downspouts or other drainage systems are working effectively and diverting water away from the home.


Basement Waterproofing Products and Systems

Waterproofing a basement requires not only the right approach, but choosing the products that will do the job. Learn more about basement waterproofing products with this guide.

There are several products that can keep your basement dry and free from water damage or seepage, including acrylic and liquid floor coatings.

Acrylic coating can be used as a sealant for the interior of a basement or on the exterior of a home that has foundation walls that are above ground. The coating can easily be painted or sprayed onto block or stucco walls. Tuffcrete is one waterproofing product that is acrylic based.

Liquid rubber coating is easily painted onto basement surfaces and is ideal for waterproofing a home that is frequently exposed to flooding or wet conditions. Liquid rubber sealants, like “Rubberize It!,” bond to most construction materials and can serve as not only a way to waterproof a basement, but repair a leaky roof or a crack in a garden fountain.

 


Tips And Advice If You Need To Hire A Contractor

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Do you need a contractor to do a home repair or remodeling? Don’t know where to begin?  According to the National Association of Home Builders –NAHB_Ohio spend about 4,969 million dollars in home improvements or over $1600 per home repairs in 2014. Hiring a contractor has never been easier, the TV commercials advertise.  But getting a good, trustworthy company or contractor to come into your home is not an easy matter. Getting a company with a national recognized brand does not mean you get that company.  They usually have franchisees that are independently owned from the national one,  and their warranties do not cover the work they do in your home.  The term “Shop Locally” has never been more apt than in this case. Hiring a local company with a long history in the region, and checking their credentials with the BBB is one step to ensure the repairs done in your home are done correctly and guaranteed by such company.

Follow more about this topic by following the links below.


Top 8 Pro Tips on How to Hire a Contractor

Get Recommendations

Start with your friends and family and then check in with the National Association of the Remodeling Industry for a list of members in your area. You can also talk with a building inspector, who’ll know which contractors routinely meet code requirements, says This Old House general contractor Tom Silva, or pay a visit to your local lumberyard, which sees contractors regularly and knows which ones buy quality materials and pay their bills on time.

Do Phone Interviews

Once you’ve assembled a list, Tom recommends that you make a quick call to each of your prospects and ask them the following questions:

• Do they take on projects of your size?

• Are they willing to provide financial references, from suppliers or banks?


What To Look For When Hiring A Contractor For Home Renovations

Home Renovations & Hiring a Contractor

When it comes to home renovations and hiring a contractor, there are a handful of responsibilities on your plate. Homeowners trust contractors to come and go as they please as they work on their homes, emphasizing the importance of working with a responsible, trustworthy, licensed, and insured contractor. We understand that you just want to break ground and get the project started already, which is why we have gathered important information for interviewing contractors.

Picking The Right Contractor For Your Home Renovations:

  • Do not make the mistake of only interviewing one contractor. A safe rule of thumb is to interview at least three contractors and receive quotes from each before making your final decision. This will help you find the right contractor for the job.

5 Things to Look for When Hiring a Contractor

Know what to ask before putting money into a home renovation.

It’s spring, which means for many of us, it feels like it’s time for some remodeling—perhaps a sprucing up of the kitchen or an upgrade on the bathroom. We’re not alone with our desire to renovate—homeowners who have put off small projects are now feeling more confident about the economy and beginning to spend more freely.

The industry is also starting to benefit from the rehabilitation of foreclosed properties (we’re on track for aprojected 1.2 million foreclosures this year alone—a record high). As a result, spending on remodeling could rise 4 to 6 percent this year, according to Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies.

But before you jump on the renovation bandwagon, here are a few things you need to know about choosing a contractor.


Why There Are so Many Bad Contractors

basementLast month Mike attended his neighborhood’s end of the summer block party.  The talk quickly turned to each homeowner’s past, present and future (pending lawsuits) problems with various contractors — everyone had a contractor from hell story.  Mike and his neighbors aren’t unique, home renovations can be one of the negative aspects of home ownership.

The typical renovation is: stressful, disruptive, messy and filled with discouraging surprises which take more time and money than budgeted.  And that’s with a good contractor, which is why it’s important to put in the time and energy when looking for one to do your project.  There are many things you’ll need to do to find a good contractor. 

But, before you start it’s important to know what you’re up against, because there’s a reason everybody has a bad contractor story.  The home improvement industry has a dirty, little secret the average consumer doesn’t know about.  Once you’ve learned it, when you start your search, you’ll be able to recognize the “stay away from this guy” signs faster.

The secret is — the typical contractor lacks the skills, knowledge and experience to run a business, which is poorly funded when they start it.  Most don’t know how to bid competitively, which means they chronically under bid jobs.  As a result, they use the money from current jobs to finish older jobs, always falling further behind and deeper in debt.

After about 2 – 5 years they: close the business, file bankruptcy, leave behind a string of poorly done, incomplete or never started jobs, and owe a lot of money to customers, employees and vendors.  The bankruptcy usually discharges any financial obligations they have.  When the business closes they disappear, because they have no intentions of honoring their obligations.

The consumer is legally unable to get damages, because the business doesn’t exist anymore.  The contractor is protected from paying them by his business’s corporate shield.  Even though everyone knows he opened shop in the next town over under a different business name he can’t be held liable.  He opens a new business with a clean slate and starts the cycle again. 

Sometimes, finding a good contractor can take more time than the actual project.  But, no matter how long your due diligence takes, it’s worth it to get a successful renovation — one where you were able to keep your sanity and budget under control.  After all, not having a contractor horror story leaves more time to eat and play corn hole at the next party.

** Next month we’ll be talking about the steps to take to find a good contractor. **


Nicole Abbott is a writer, business consultant and psycho-therapist with over 20 years of experience in the fields of mental health, business and addiction.  She’s an educator, coach, lecturer, trainer and facilitator — who has conducted over 200 workshops, trainings, presentations, college classes and seminars. 

How To Spot Foundation Problems

 

Spotting problems with the foundation of your home shouldn’t be difficult.  The degree of damage the foundation has could be way out of your league, but some problems you should be able to spot without any difficulty.  Hiring a waterproofing and foundation repair specialist can be the best solution if you have a foundation problem, and they can find the problem and give you an estimate for you so you can shop around and find the best possible deal.  Check their credentials before admitting anyone into your home, and make sure their standing with the BBB is good before signing and writing checks.

For more about foundation repairs, follow the links below.


The Easy Way to Waterproof Masonry Surfaces

For brick, stone, and concrete surfaces, exposure to moisture can be damaging, if not immediately then gradually and inevitably. Fortunately, it’s easy to protect masonry surfaces—and the interior of your home—with a waterproofing treatment from DRYLOK. Here’s how.

For the last 50 years or so, new home foundations have almost always been made of concrete. Ranking among the toughest materials on the planet, concrete boasts surpassing strength and durability. It’s also cost-effective and, for the average contracting crew, relatively easy to work with. Considering its many virtues, there’s little wonder that in the construction of my own home four years ago, the builders saw fit to erect the wood frame over a foundation of poured concrete.

Though it’s long-lasting and hard-wearing, concrete is far from invincible. It’s naturally porous, and that means it’s susceptible to moisture. If exposed to enough moisture for a long enough period of time, a concrete foundation can leave a home vulnerable not only to damaging leaks, but also to unhealthy mold and mildew. In severe cases, compromised concrete at the foundation level can even upset the overall structural integrity of the home, necessitating extensive, expensive repairs.


The 4 Basic Indoor Warning Signs

Houses settle over time, and a little unevenness isn’t cause for panic. At the same time, you’ll want to be alert to these warning signs that more dramatic changes are taking place:

1.  A door begins to jam or fails to latch.

2.  Cracks appear in walls, especially over doorways, windows, or where walls meet ceilings.

3.  Cracks open in vinyl or ceramic tile over a concrete floor.

4.  Windows that used to open and close easily suddenly begin to stick or won’t close completely.


How-To Guide: Foundation Repairs and Sealing Foundation Cracks

Foundation repairs run the gamut from simple DIY fixes to major reconstruction. Learn more about foundation repair costs and when it’s best to call a pro.

If your foundation has cracks wider than 1/4-inch wide, or if you have stairstep cracks in blocks or bricks, you can hire a contractor to plug them by injecting epoxy ($1,500-$3,000) or do it yourself with epoxy putty, but either way, you’ll only be stopping water from coming in.

You need to fix the underlying problem.

The most common culprit is water. It can accumulate in the soil around the foundation, which expands the soil and puts pressure on walls and foundation footings, causing cracks to appear.

Check to make sure all gutters and downspout drains are in good working order, and that the soil around your foundation is properly graded — it should slope at least 6 inches for every 10 horizontal feet.

Most foundations are required to have a perimeter drain system, such as a French drain, that channels sub-surface water away from the foundation.

It’s possible for this drain to become blocked, causing water to accumulate in the soil and putting pressure on your foundation walls. If you suspect a blocked drain, you will need to hire a professional to unclog it.


Do You Know If You Have a Foundation Problem?

Water in the basement, damp walls, leaky water lines, and humidity are easy for any homeowner to spot.  But, as homeowners the more difficult task we encounter is knowing whether the foundation of our homes are faulty or not.  I f you own a brand new home, it should be obvious that it has a foundation with no problems.  But, if you own an older home and are unsure as to whether you have a damaged foundation or not, hiring a home inspector to come see your home could be a good idea.  Early signs of a damaged foundation tend to be subtle, and as homeowners we may not see that there is something wrong.

For more about this topic, follow the links below.


Basement floods prompt homeowners to sue contractor and concrete company

A Skokie husband and wife are suing a Cook County contractor for breach of contract in a dispute over the construction of a new home’s foundation and other issues with the residence.

Barry and Lisa Sorkin filed a claim Sept. 21 in Cook County Circuit Court, Law Division against Viorel Cordos and Duran Concrete Inc. alleging breach of contract, negligence and fraud.

According to the claim, the Sorkins hired Cordos to build a house on property they owned in Skokie. As general contractor, Cordos hired Duran Concrete to build the home’s foundation and install basement waterproofing. After moving into the house, the plaintiffs have allegedly experienced significant water seepage and flooding three times in 2014 and 2015. Subsequent investigations have allegedly shown no waterproof membrane was used on the foundation and that proper drains were not installed on the property. These defects have forced the plaintiffs to make significant repairs.


What Type of Repair and Restoration Service to Engage for Foundation Repairs

Taking any chances with the foundation repair service means risking the entire property itself.

Cracks and leaning walls could be a lot of trouble and call for urgent foundation repair and maintenance before they lead to even bigger problems.

These structural issues are a great cause for concern, because they can easily compromise the integrity of the entire structure of the building.

Before residential and commercial property owners make the next move, it is important to weigh certain factors that could impact their decision to hire the right service.

Factors to choose a foundation specialist

There is no doubt that property owners should ensure that only a foundation specialist is engaged for the necessary residential or commercial foundation repair. Avoid calling any other renovation service that is not equipped to handle the complexity of the task.


State Warns Insurance Companies Not to Cancel Policies Over Foundation Problems

The state insurance department sent a letter to insurance companies notifying them they are not to cancel or non-renew any policies for homeowners who file claims for coverage because they have a crumbling foundation.

The move is in response to concerns voiced by many homeowners and their attorneys.

One homeowner complained to the Department of Consumer Protection that their insurance company was dropping them at renewal because they had an issue with their home’s foundation.

In the course of an NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters investigation starting in July, homeowners have said they are scared to file a claim because of the risk of losing insurance.

Homeowners and attorneys tell NBC Connecticut their claims get denied, at times without the insurance company seeing the failing concrete basement walls.

The Department of Consumer Protection released a brochure to help homeowners with the issue.


Getting Your Home Ready For The Winter

Getting your home ready for fall and winter is a very small amount of time you need to invest to have things working properly next year.  From cleaning the gutters in your home to putting away the water hoses and machinery in the shed, the amount of work you need to do is minimal if you consider these small chores will ensure a long life to your home.  For more tips about how to get your home ready for fall and winter follow the links below.


Is Your Home Ready For Fall And Winter?

Summer’s over, the kids are back in school, football games have started and the days and nights are starting to get cooler. There are quite a few things you can do to be sure your home is ready for the coming seasons. And none of them include raking leaves, although that’s a good idea too! Here are some ideas to get you started:

Outside Your House

  • Once you’ve washed your car and watered your garden for the last time this year, drain your hose lines and turn off the water to outside valves. Remove the hose from the water valve and store it in a garage or shed. All of these actions will help prevent burst pipes over the winter.
    • Winterize your garden. Be sure all of your plants are trimmed back, and bring in or cover any furniture in your yard. Also cover your air-conditioning condenser unit and grill.

Autumn Checklist

The days are getting shorter, the nights are closing in and the temperature is slowly dropping.  Autumn is the ideal time to address all those little jobs that can make a big difference for you and your family this Winter.  Stop problems now before the Winter winds turn them from minor annoyances into disasters!  Most of the suggestions listed below are well within the average person’s ability but if you don’t feel you’re up to the task, why not contact CPM Exeter to find out more about our Property Maintenance services.

Drainage & Gutters

During the year your drainage system diverts thousands of gallons of water away from your home’s exterior and foundation walls and therefore it’s essential to keep the system flowing freely.  The majority of plants and trees drop their leaves in Autumn so it’s important to clear the drains & gutters regularly to prevent any blockages building up.  You may even wish to fit mesh guards around the edge of the roof or gutters to prevent the debris from returning.


Preparing Your Home for Fall

As much fun as summer can be, it has to end at some point. As the trees begin to change and the weather shifts from hot and humid to cool and crisp, it’s time to accept that fall has arrived once again. Whether you’re sad to see the sweltering weather end or are looking forward to unpacking your favorite cold weather clothes, there’s a lot to do to get ready for the changing seasons.

While the weather during the fall in much of the country remains tolerable for outdoor activities, winter temperatures will be here before you know it. With these helpful tips, you can easily ready your home for fall, and the colder temperatures to come.

  1. Pack up your summer clothes

Some of your summer clothes may be appropriate for light layering in the fall, but most of your shorts and tank tops are ready to be retired for the season. Packing up your summer clothes can make more room in your closet for sweaters, long pants, boots, and coats, making sure you’re prepared for the brisk chill of fall and the colder weather around the corner. Make sure your store your clothing properly to ensure your favorite summer duds are ready for next year.