Spring home touch-ups after a long winter

Diligence will pay off in the long term

It never fails, the weather warms up and suddenly we are in full renovation or clean-up mode.

There is something undeniably energizing about warm air, sunshine and new growth that gets us out into the home design centres and spring trade shows as we delve into home improvements.

This is a great time of year to take a good look at your home, interior and exterior to see what repairs or touch-ups can be done before the weather gets too warm and lures us away for camping trips and days at the beach.

Winter can beat your house up and it’s a great habit to get into where you fix the finicky things now before they get out of hand.

Gutters and windows should be cleaned out and checked for leaks/cracks so that when the rains come the water can flow freely away from your home.

Plugged gutters can overflow and cause water to leak into the foundation and a window that has a gap or broken seal can also allow moisture to damage your home.

Those rooms that you don’t spend much time in, go there and check for drafts and leaks. Fill, repair and paint anything that looks compromised and have the peace of mind that a small item will not turn into an expensive repair.

Check your foundation as the weather warms and the frost leaves the ground.

Moisture metres can be purchased to keep those dark corners in check to make sure that ground water isn’t compromising your foundation.

Over the winter many things can change, and frost can push or expand an area which is left open or compromised when the weather warms up; these areas can be susceptible to leaks and cracks can form. A foundation repair can be an easier thing than a concrete wall full of moisture!

Drainage is a huge deal and the time to watch for it is during spring rains. The direction the grade runs to or from the house is an important thing to be wary of and this can possibly change during the winter months.

Make sure down spouts are around your house and have enough length (4 to 6ft.) to take the water away from the foundation. I see many spouts that are disconnected and damaged from winter ice which are ineffective.

This is an inexpensive fix! If you have negative grading (a slope or slant) running towards your home, it might be a good idea to contact a landscape expert who can re-invent or re-route your water flow. Again, prevention is the name of the game.

It is a great practice to inspect your home or even keep a log of the changes happening to your home season upon season.

We might not remember if that crack was in the foundation last year or if the house shifted and worked a window loose but if you are diligent in your spring inspection, you can often detour these possibly expensive issues before they grow.

Maintenance isn’t always fun new paint colours and pretty curtains; sometimes we must give our home the attention of regular upkeep to keep value and wellness in our homes. Diligence will pay off in the long term!

Kim Wyse is a Central Alberta freelance designer. Find her on facebook at ‘Kim Wyse Associate Royal Lepage Tamarack Trail Realty’.

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