Owning your own home is a great feeling! After all, it’s part of the American dream.
But, not everything about being a homeowner is sunshine and roses. Part of owning a house is the responsibility of maintaining it.
Many homeowners choose to do little home repairs themselves. Census data shows that American homeowners did about 43 million home improvement projects DIY style between 2015 and 2017.
If you are new to home repairs or homeownership, you might feel a little overwhelmed at the thought of doing repairs yourself.
We put together our top 6 favorite home improvement secrets to help you DIY your home maintenance. Keep reading to learn tips that every homeowner should know!
Top 6 Home Improvement Secrets You Need to Know
Many home improvement projects are easy enough for a DIY novice to do. To help get you started, here are a few of our favorite tips.
1. Pay Attention to Your Gutters
It’s easy to forget they are there, but your gutters need maintenance at least a couple of times a year. If you neglect your gutters, the leaves compact and clog the gutters, damage your roof/siding, and (in colder climates) form ice bricks waiting to fall on your head.
To clean out your gutters, get on a ladder with a hose or a leaf blower and remove any leaves stuck in the gutter. Some leaf blowers and pressure washers have gutter attachments to help you clean your gutters without the need to get up on a ladder.
2. Upgrade the Thermostat
Upgrading the thermostat in your home is an easy way to increase the energy efficiency of your home, and you don’t even need to call the electrician! Make sure you know whether your current thermostat has 2 or 4 wires, so you know which kind of programmable thermostat to buy.
When you go to replace the thermostat, be sure to turn off the breakers to the furnace and the air conditioner before you begin. Don’t turn those breakers on again until you finish with the replacement.
3. Check out Those Studs!
Whenever you want to hang something heavy like a large painting or a mirror, you need to find the studs in the wall. If you don’t affix the wall hanging to a stud, your screws/nails will pull right out of the wall, leaving big holes in the drywall.
There are all kinds of electric stud finders on the market. If you don’t have a stud finder, you can try tapping on the wall with the back of a screwdriver. Notice the change in the tone when you tap the wall where a stud is and where there is no stud.
4. Sometimes the House Needs a Good Scrub Down
Ever look at your house and notice that the exterior looks grimy or dirty? You can fix that yourself with a good pressure washer and some elbow grease!
Start from the roofline and work from side to side going towards the ground. To avoid stripping any paint from your home, don’t spray the water at a 90° angle.
Pressure washers emit high-velocity water that can cause major damage if you’re not careful. Wear gloves and eye protection and never point the pressure washer at other people or pets.
5. Extend the Life and Look of Your Driveway
Sealing your driveway keeps it looking brand new for years. Keep your curb appeal by sealing the driveway and any sidewalks leading to your home.
Check the weather forecast and pick a day when rain isn’t expected. When you start the project, make sure you repair any existing cracks in the concrete and then wash the driveway clean of any dirt and/or debris. Apply the sealant in small sections and allow it to dry for at least 24 hours before you park on the driveway again.
6. Your Home’s Biggest Fan
Adding ceiling fans to your home is another great way to increase energy efficiency, add lighting, and they look nice! Every bedroom should have a ceiling fan.
Make sure you buy the right electrical box for a ceiling fan, though. Electrical boxes for regular lighting fixtures aren’t meant to hold the weight of a ceiling fan. Again, be sure to shut off the power at the breaker box before you begin the project.
Sometimes It’s Best Not to DIY
Yes, most household repairs are DIY-able. But, sometimes it’s best not
One key thing to keep in mind is that some jobs are beyond your ability. Everyone has their own level of maintenance skills and knowledge, so be honest with yourself about what you can do before you get into a repair that is over your head or dangerous.
If you are brand new at DIY home maintenance, it’s best not to tackle an electrical repair or to build your own addition to the home. But, if you have some skills in construction or electrical engineering, you may feel more confident handling these repairs by yourself.
Another task that is not recommended for homeowners to take on by themselves is HVAC maintenance. The good news is that you can hire a company to come to maintain your air conditioning on a set schedule so you won’t even need to think about when to call the maintenance company! Check this page out to find out more about HVAC maintenance plans.
Don’t Be Afraid to Try DIY
Now that you’re armed with the best home improvement secrets we could muster, it’s time to get your DIY plan together! Most home repair projects aren’t hard for the average homeowner, so don’t be nervous.
We hope you loved reading this article and that you learned some great tips for maintaining your home. If you are looking for more articles about property management and real estate, check out the rest of our blogs today!