Most homeowners cringe at the thought of making home repairs. Admittedly, they do often require a good chunk of money and time. There are some home improvements you simply cannot put off, however. So, if you notice any of the below problems in your own home, it’s best to act quickly. Doing so will actually save you time, money and a major headache later on — even if it seems costly now.
1. Clogged Gutters
Leaves, twigs, nuts and other debris have a way of pilling up in your gutters. If you don’t take the time to clean them out each year, the debris can become heavy and break or bend your gutters. The buildup may also prevent water from slowing down the spouts, causing damage to your roof or your basement as water spills over the gutters and down around the base of your home. Prevent these scenarios by cleaning your gutters once or twice a year.
2. Damp Basement
If you notice stains on the walls or floor of your basement or begin to pick up on musty odors, water is somehow making its way into your basement. This may be due to clogged gutters, improper grading or internal moisture sources like unvented clothes dryers or lower-level showers. This excess dampness may encourage mold and mildew growth, resulting in additional problems. Therefore, regardless of the cause, it’s best to find the root of the problem and fix it before the situation worsens.
3. Damaged Roof
Missing shingles, water spots on interior ceilings and a sagging or mossy roof can all be signs of a damaged rooftop. These issues can cause leaks, mold, cracks and even flooding in extreme cases. If you don’t fix your roof immediately, these issues can take a toll on your home and be extremely costly to fix. Therefore, it’s best to take action at the first sign of trouble. You should also schedule a yearly roof inspection to keep yours in tip-top shape.
4. Noisy Garage Door
If your garage door squeaks, rattles, bangs or makes a general cacophony of noise, there’s obviously a problem with it. Any number of things could cause a noisy garage door, from unbalanced doors to poor lubrication. However, if you don’t find a solution quickly, you risk breaking or severely damaging your doors which will result in a costly repair or replacement. Therefore, it’s best to call a professional who can diagnose your noisy door, perform a thorough inspection and silence it for good.
5. Rotting Deck
Wooden decks and balconies are prone to rotting, especially if you live in a place that experiences a lot of rain and cloud cover. Sometimes, a few boards will show signs of rot and, other times, the problem can be pervasive. Either way, you’ll have to replace all deteriorating boards to ensure the structure’s safety. Replace the boards with new wood or composite decking. The latter option may be more expensive but it won’t ever rot, making it a worthy investment.
6. Leaky Plumbing
A few drips from your pipes are not something to ignore. While a few drops of water may seem insignificant, even the tiniest leak in your plumbing can cause severe damage to your home. This excess moisture can lead to mold, structural problems and larger leaks as time goes on. Periodically check under sinks to ensure your pipes are dry and free of leaks to prevent damage. If you do spot water, call a plumber right away.
7. Termite Infestation
Termites are tiny insects that primarily feast on wood and cause billions of dollars of damage to homes each year. An infestation can also prevent you from selling your home, so it’s smart to rid your home of these pests as soon as possible. Avoid attempting to handle the situation on your own and hire an exterminator, instead. They’ll know where to look for these creatures and how to get rid of them and keep them out for good.
8. Peeling Caulk
Besides looking ugly, peeling caulk can wreak havoc on your home. Inside, this problem may occur around bathtubs, sinks and backsplashes. Outside, caulk around windows, doors and vents can also peel and crack. Regardless of location, this issue can allow water to infiltrate cracks and crevices, causing mold, mildew and rot. Fix this problem in a matter of minutes by peeling away the old caulk and reapplying a new layer of the stuff.
While some of these problems seem like a headache to fix, ignoring them will only exacerbate things. Thus, for the sake of your sanity — and your pocketbook — it’s best to address these issues as soon as you notice them. Then, work to maintain your home by conducting regular inspections and replacing old, deteriorating materials periodically. This way your problems won’t accumulate and you can easily tackle one project at a time. Tomorrow, you’ll be thankful you acted today.