Being a homeowner is liberating, however you must remember that home ownership involves maintenance and repairs as required. It is especially important to maintain the home before and after the winter months, when the home is subject to harsh weather conditions and possible safety hazards.

At least once a year, homeowners should conduct a thorough check to ensure their home is in good order. Below is a maintenance checklist to help you keep track of the items you should inspect and maintain on a regular basis to prevent major repairs and expenses in the future:

  1. The roof should be replaced approximately every 25 years, depending on the type of materials used. In the meantime, it is important to examine the roof on a regular basis to look for loose or damaged shingles. You can then repair as required.
  2. A leaky roof is uncomfortable and can cause a lot of damage to the inside of your home. It is therefore important to inspect and repair when necessary the flashing around roof stacks, vents, skylights, and chimneys as possible sources of leakage.
  3. Gutters keep your house free from leaks and flooding. Examine your gutters regularly, looking for uneven, or damaged gutters, downspouts, hangers, gutter guards, and strainers. Especially in the fall, it is important to clean any debris and leaves from the gutters as required.
  4. Trees are an inviting addition to any yard; however the branches growing above and around the house can cause damage. Therefore, it is important to cut back any branches and shrubbery growing too close to the house to prevent damage to its exterior.
  5. Keep heating costs down by checking that caulking, insulation and weather-tripping are installed and installed properly. 
  6. Before the cooler months arrive, it is important to drain pools, hose bibs, water lines and sprinklers. Draining your water lines is important to preventing broken water pipes and draining the pool is important to keeping it clean and healthy.
  7. Especially when the cooler weather approaches, inspecting your heating system on a regular basis can save you mid-winter headaches in case of a breakdown and money in case of repairs.

Regardless of the time of year, inspecting your home on a regular basis is important to saving you money in the long run and keeping you and your family safe. If you are purchasing a home or selling your home, it is important to hire a certified home inspector to conduct a thorough and professional home inspection for you.