There’s nothing like waking up to that first sunny 70 degree day and realizing you have work to do. But I promise you, all of these home maintenance suggestions will give you the freedom to enjoy more sun and more time in the sun. You’ll thank me later.
Clean your windows. I love the amount light that filters in my house from the sun every morning. The more you read this blog the more you’ll hear about my A+ view of the sunrise and sunset over Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. But I also live near a major highway and a lot of tractor trailer dust finds its way onto my windows. Blech! Homeownership includes interior maintenance as well as exterior. Living in urban areas typically doesn’t help. Mella Window & Carpet Cleaning is a company based out of Northern Kentucky that cleans windows AND carpets (another good thing to do to keep your house in good shape). And the cool thing? They’re local and they work on Saturdays. They’ve received tons of accolades and continue to grow. You can find different specials (at the time of this publication $149 for 20 windows) here. And don’t get me started on why you should really clean your windows if you plan on selling your home…
Revisit your homeowners insurance policy. Many people sign off on their insurance policies when they buy their home and then they don’t look at it again until they need to use it. According to the Insurance Information Institute (click here for article) unless you live in a flood zone, living in Northern Kentucky shouldn’t come with outrageous insurance prices. At number 24, we’re pretty much dead center. That being said, the one thing you don’t want to be is underinsured. If you have any improvements or your home has increased in value, it is really, really important that those things are reflected in your policy.
Secondly, it’s never fun to find out your insurance doesn’t cover something that you thought it did and insurance policies do change. Ralph Chafin from Mitchell Insurance (who saved me $1,000 this year in insurance costs) gives this example, “Spring is always a good time to revisit your home insurance policy to prepare for the spring storms. Trees come down from your property, from a neighbor’s property or debris from a storm. How will your insurance handle a tree that falls in your yard but does not hit any building? How does your insurance handle a tree if it does hit your house, fence, shed or pool? How do you protect yourself from a neighbors dead tree that could fall and damage your property? Are you sure your policy will replace your roof or just try to ‘patch’ it? These are things to think about while you watch those black storm clouds move in.”
Get your lawn equipment fixed/working. I still remember the year I put off mowing the lawn until it was 3-4” high. I pulled the cord on the mower. Nothing. I pulled again. Nothing. I tried everything. Nope. The grass didn’t get mowed until the following weekend and it wasn’t fun. Not to mention I was now out $200 and it took 6 hours over two days to mow my small lawn. Save yourself the pain, get your lawn equipment repaired and maintenanced now before the grass grows to your knee and your wallet begins to cry. While some of you may have a neighbor who can replace spark plugs and such, local shops like Crescent Springs Hardware, located off Buttermilk Pike, can help you sharpen blades or repair your mower if you’re not that friendly with the guy next door.
Extra Credit: Service your AC. The first day our AC didn’t work I promised it was the last day. Turns out a simple Freon leak made our house climb to over 90 degrees that day, windows open, fans on high. It sounds like a gimmick, it sounds like a money pit, but your AC unit is mechanical and it sits outside 365 days a year. Keeping your AC clean and serviced can save you money on your electric bills and save you from waking up in a pool of sweat from a malfunction.
Plan for any home improvements. As a real estate agent the first thing I do for my clients when they look at a home with improvements is suggest they pull any permits. New electrical? There should be a permit for that. New deck? Where is the permit? It’s costly and it’s a pain but when you need to sell your home and you need to do it sooner than later, permits are a must. For Northern Kentucky homeowners you can see necessary permits and costs here and pay for them here. Not so bad was it? Even better, that website also lists contractors and their licenses so you can check up on Mike down the street who swears he knows how to run electrical. Two birds, one stone. Now you can sketch out that new bathroom and kitchen you’ve been dreaming about.
Take a walk outside (you can bring a friend too). The winter months, no matter how warm or cold can bring some nasty weather to your house. Remember that tornado warning we had a few months ago? Especially in this region, our weather can go from sunny and 75 to windy and zero degrees in 24 hours and that takes a toll on our roofs, siding, and foundation. And here is a perfect example of where the early bird catches the worm. By taking a pair of binoculars, you can find a decently priced pair here, and checking for any issues on your roof like popped nails, sitting water, or missing shingles you can prevent hundreds of dollars in repairs down the road. Checking gutters for leaves and debris can also save money down the road. And if you already own a ladder, inspection and cleaning is free.
Spring is such a great time of the year for living in Northern Kentucky with daylight hanging around until well in the evening, these 5 tasks are simple can save you time and money and allow you to have fun in the sun without worry. And when you’re done, go ahead, enjoy that large cone from Graeter’s, you deserve it and you’ll be able to afford it.