Taking a regular inventory of the exterior of your home is wise for many reasons. The most important reason, of course, is to determine potential issues before they begin to affect the interior of your home. Take some time to walk around the outside of your home a few times a year and check for these five things:
If you have a paved driveway or perhaps a fountain, cracks can be a destructive and expensive problem. Are there any new cracks in the concrete? Are existing cracks changing or getting larger? Are there unusual pools of water that can’t be explained? Keeping a log (and even pictures) of problem areas will help you stay on top of areas of concern so you can consult with a professional before it creates major issues with your home.
Check the Roof
One gusty rainy season can quickly compromise the integrity of your roof. While you are a bit limited in what you can see from the ground, an inspection to look for loose or missing shingles is a vital first step in catching issues before water seeps into your home. Make sure to call a professional to come out and inspect the roof if you see any issues–or even if you don’t–but have weathered a few severe storms.
A quick pressure wash or even a new coat of paint can go a long way in improving the look of the exterior of your home. Make sure any discoloration or staining isn’t an indicator of a bigger problem, and then take some time to clean the outside of the house to freshen everything up. You will also want to check for any holes or entry points that could attract small animals or insects and give them a pathway into your attic.
Inspect exterior stairs, patios, and windowsills for rot or termites. You want to catch both things as early as possible. While most people hire a pest control company, it is still wise to be vigilant and check for signs of termite damage yourself. Call your pest control company immediately if you see any signs of termites.
Gutters should be cleaned out a few times a year. They can take a beating from falling rain, hail, and leaves. The main function of the gutter system is to get the water away from your home, so it is very important that you check them regularly to make sure they aren’t clogged and are working properly. Damage can be caused by clogging and even the occasional squirrel or other critter getting into them.
As the seasons change and you find yourself getting your home ready for the holiday season, take a few moments to walk the exterior of your home and check for any damage that may have occurred within the last few months. Make notes of the problem areas as they come up and always call a professional to do a proper inspection.