For homeowners, it’s vital to maintain and care for your property, particularly if you’re looking to sell or let in the near future. As with cars and other assets, a minimum investment in maintenance and care can help you avoid bigger bills later on for extensive repairs.
As winter kicks in, make sure a professional has looked at your roof. Remove leaves from the gutter and sweep them clean. If the troughs get clogged up with sticks and leaves, it can lead to roof leakages and damage. Consider getting gutter guards put in place as a preventative measure and plan to do another sweep out in the spring. In the garden, clean away any moss that has grown over damp paving stones or paths and power-wash driveways and pathways which can become slippery in the winter.
Have loose tiles replaced and leading updated if necessary. These actions will help to prevent leaks and ensure that your roof stays in good working order for as long as possible. A slate roof will last sixty or more years if it’s well maintained and a shingled roof up to twenty years. Similarly, check the seals on your windows and doors to ensure they are rainproof.
In the house, check that your appliances are still safe. An annual gas check is a worthwhile investment for peace of mind. Replace the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and check that they are working correctly.
Check too that your house is running efficiently. Bleed the radiators, defrost your freezer and replace old-fashioned glass light bulbs with modern energy-efficient bulbs. If your boiler is an old one, see whether upgrade grants are available for a more energy-efficient model. Also use this time to renew any service contracts you have for your home – consider getting a service plan for your boiler, home emergency cover or a contract in place for things such as security alarms.
Clean out plugs with a professional-grade de-greaser to remove accumulated hair and soap and help the drains to run efficiently. Have your chimneys swept if you have stoves or an open fire and check that your home ventilation is working adequately in the kitchen and bathroom.
As you get into a routine of taking these steps, basic home maintenance will become second nature and you’ll begin to reap the rewards of preventative care, which include fewer emergencies and expensive call-outs.
During the winter our homes are exposed to driving wind, heavy rains, snow and frost. This can often exacerbate a problem with your property leading to a failure in one of the elements. A common one is roof tiles coming loose or burst pipes. Both need swift repair and are very stressful to the property owner to deal with. In addition there is an unfortunate increase in the amount of burglaries this time of year. This results in call-outs to repair broken windows and doors.
Pinnacle Group is well placed to handle all your insurance related repairs and claims. We will itemize the works and provide you with a breakdown of the costs. We can use this to get your property restored to its former glory quickly and to the highest standard. Plumbing, Electrical, Carpentry, Roofing & Property repairs; whatever your insurance property repairs and maintenance requirements are we can cover that.
The standard of insulation is essential in maintaining heat, and there are many ways in which the insulation of your home can be compromised. General wear and tear can have a negative impact on your property but you’ll also find that mammals and birds can peck away or dislodge the insulation in roofs, walls and around your window.
Anything which helps to make a home feel cosier and reduce spending on energy bills has to be seen as a good thing and this is why checking your insulation will have a big impact on your property.
Your pipes are responsible for hot and cold water flowing in and around your home, so you should take the time to ensure they are in good condition. Also, if something does go wrong with your pipes, the level of damage that can be caused is quite large, so if you are looking to prevent hassle and expenditure, take the time to review your pipes.
A lot of people think that problems suddenly appear and make themselves a nuisance over the festive period or during the winter. This isn’t the case. Most of the issues that arise during the winter have probably been there for a while, but they haven’t caused an issue. Loose or missing tiles aren’t much of an issue during the summer months when the home is still warm but during the winter, missing tiles can cause havoc inside a home. The same can be said for gaps or cracks around window frames.
This is why if you find small jobs that need to be taken care of, take care of them before they become an issue. Being proactive around the home minimises the likelihood of problems arising during winter.
A quick way to test if your radiators need bled is to check the top and bottom of your radiators. If one end is warm and the other end is cold, trapped air is likely impacting on your radiators and you need to release this trapped air. There are extensive guides on bleeding radiators available online, including step-by-step video tutorials, so make sure that you are happy with the condition of your radiators.
As the weather changes, you’re probably going to find yourself inside more. So, now is a good time to make some interior improvements. For landlords, fall may also be a good time for improvements if you’re between tenants.
It is advisable to service your boiler annually to ensure it is working safely and efficiently. Cranking up the heating in the winter months will put extra strain on your boiler so making sure it’s in optimum condition before you need to rely on it to keep you warm is a smart move.
Guttering should be cleared of leaves and other debris that may cause blockages. Blocked gutters cause water to overflow and if left untreated can lead to more serious issues such as staining on the external face of the property and eventually more severe internal issues such as penetrating damp.
Tip: Pack away any loose items from the garden such as gardening tools and lightweight furniture so they don’t get caught in winds and cause damage to your or any neighboring properties.
During the dark, winter months, the increased use of candles, fires and fairy lights are all additional fire hazards within the home. Although a vital task all year round, an annual pre-winter maintenance task to ensure smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are fully functioning to safeguard you and your home is a good idea.