The end of summer is approaching, and soon, autumn will be upon us. That means changes in the weather. We might see wind, rain, colder temperatures and other adverse conditions. When that happens, the way we use our homes will change. Let’s talk about why it’s important that you undertake home maintenance as we approach this time of year.
Seasonal differences in usage might impact the safety risks within your home. However, with a little care and attention to detail, you can make your house safer. Many small steps can combine to make a safer place to live.
Why Fall Cleaning is Important
You’ve heard of spring cleaning. It helps you get your home de-cluttered and safe for the approaching summer. Even so, autumn (and later, winter) marks another change for which you must prepare the home.
Summer conditions might have created damage which needs repairs to prevent further problems. Conversely, you might only use certain parts of the home during the winter and fall. Therefore, you must get them ready to work when the time arises. By doing so, you create a more comprehensive safety net around the property.
You can often benefit from fall maintenance in a couple of different ways. Immediately, you might save money on utility and electrical costs. You can also avoid potentially-damaging property losses.
Not only that, your homeowners insurance might benefit. A well-kept home has lower chances of both wear and tear, and catastrophic occurrences. Thus, your likelihood of needing to file an insurance claim might drop. As a result, you have a better chance of maintaining affordable rates over time.
Also, if you ever file a claim, you might find that you have a higher likelihood of receiving compensation. Damage might prove less severe, meaning you have a lower chance of exceeding your limits. A maintained home also might give you an opportunity to have a claim approved altogether. That’s due to the fact that homeowners coverage doesn’t usually cover normal wear and tear. With care, you’ll likely lend credence to the fact that any claim was accidental and unexpected.
Looking for Things to do at Home
So, what can you do to make your home safer this autumn? Let’s think about some of the hazards specific to this time of year. These might include:
- Structure damage from weather
- Water damage or pest invasions
- Fire risks from increased energy use and heating costs
Sometimes, you cannot prevent these damages. However, there are times when you can. Think about how you can make small changes now to make your home safer. You can often do so by reinforcing the home’s seals, checking for fire risks and optimizing energy use.
Creating Stronger Seals and Barriers
Your home has seals everywhere. They exist around your roof, near doors and windows, and at the home’s foundation. They work with barriers like your insulation, roof, pipes and vent systems to keep pests out of the home. Take proactive steps to keep these systems in good shape.
- Receive roof repairs and replacement as needed. Do the same for decaying portions of the structure.
- Inspect the foundation for signs of cracks, root penetration or water encroachment.
- Keep gutters, drainage pipes, and the structure itself free from debris. Open systems will allow water to drain away from the home. That reduces flooding risks.
- Test all doors and windows for secure locks. Make sure they don’t have openings that will allow outside pests to easily get in.
- Have a visit from your exterminator. They can spray against pests.
Reducing Fire Risks
One of the most common autumn home risks is the risk of fires. Falling temperatures mean you might use more electricity to warm the home.
Furthermore, you will likely prepare to use your fireplace in certain conditions. Therefore, the risk of home fires might rise. To combat these risks:
- Service your HVAC system before you turn on the heat for the year. Depending on the type of system you have, you might need different work performed. Gas or furnace heating will likely need different service from electric systems. Always engage professionals for these tasks.
- If you have a fireplace or chimney, have the system cleaned. You can rid it of accumulated soot and pest deposits that might spark fires.
- Have an electricity inspection to ensure that all wiring performs optimally. Don’t forget to monitor your use of space heaters or other systems that might pose fire risks.
With appropriate care, you might not reduce fire and pest risks. You can also potentially optimize your energy use and overall home safety. Functioning electricity and seals mean you won’t waste electricity and run up your bills. A sealed home can also keep the elements out. That means you’ll create a safer environment in which your family can live.
While your insurance coverage can benefit from fall maintenance, your safety should remain at the top of your list. Make protecting yourself in your home a goal for this autumn.