Spring is here and that means it’s time to give the house a check-up. Home maintenance may not sound like fun, but it’s one of the best things you can do to keep important mechanics functioning properly and preserve home value. The more care you invest in your home while living there, the better condition it retains for future resale. And there’s no better time than spring to get the outdoor tasks done before it becomes uncomfortably hot.

This checklist will help you stay organized. Be sure to add any tasks that are specific to your home.

1. Paint the exterior. This can be a costly endeavor but necessary if you see cracking and chipping. Homes generally require painting every five to ten years, depending on climate and wear and tear. Choose a durable paint and get at least three estimates for comparison if hiring a professional.

2. Wash the windows. Get off the grime and keep windows clear for brighter indoor natural light. Use a hose attachment to help increase water pressure for the outside glass. Or turn to a pro who will do it for you.

3. Clear gutters and downspouts. It’s important to keep gutters clear from fallen leaves and other debris to prevent clogs and indoor flooding. Also, clogging can cause wood trim to rot, inviting unwelcome pests indoors. Ensure water is being properly diverted away from the house.

4. Check sprinklers and irrigation system. If you have a sprinkler system, run it in all zones to ensure no sprinkler heads have broken or have turned askew. Adjust heads that spray water into the driveway or sidewalk to avoid wasting money.

5. Inspect the roof. Don’t want to get up on the roof? Use binoculars or a camera with a telephoto feature to look for missing shingles or anything that doesn’t look right. For better inspection and repairs, call a roofer.

6. Give your AC unit a check-up. Change HVAC air filters. Clear away brush around the unit and wipe off coils if dirty. It’s wise to get the AC professionally serviced before summer.

7. Check screens. Check for small tears in screened windows or doors to keep bugs outside. Repair kits can be found in the hardware store.

8. Prep lawn equipment and garden tools. Inspect the lawnmower for tune up needs, lubricate moving parts, and replace old gas. Clean off garden tools.

9. Check for moisture in the basement. Water or moisture in the basement can mean damage to a home over time. If the air is naturally moist, invest in a dehumidifier.

10. Check for signs of termites. Keep chopped wood away from the house as it can attract termites. Termites swarm in the spring. If you see several of these winged insects flying out of a hole in your home’s woodwork, it’s likely you have a termite issue. Use a professional service to eliminate them.

Real Estate Term of the Week

Arm’s Length Transaction: A transaction between a buyer and seller with roughly equal bargaining power who are trying to negotiate the best terms for their respective sides. Presumably, the seller wants the highest price possible and the buyer wants to pay the least amount possible. Most private party real estate transactions proceed in this way, and the selling price likely represents the fair market value of the home.
A deal that is not an arm’s-length transaction would be a father selling his home to his son, where the father may give the son a large discount, below market value.

Platinum Service Realty