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House Inspection: Essential Part of Home Maintenance

April 20th, 2009

House inspection is not only undertaken before buying a house or before selling a house. Informal or professional house inspection should be done at least twice a year, preferably in the spring and fall.

During your house inspection, you will see things that you need to repair before they deteriorate to a point that requires costly repair or replacement. In the same way that preventive medicine is better than treatment, preventive home maintenance is also better than repairs and replacement.

If you are confident enough about house inspection, you can do the inspection yourself. You can always hire a professional home inspector later if you discover a major defect. You can download house inspection checklists from reputable home maintenance websites to make your house inspection more thorough and complete.

Among the most important parts that you need to check are your heating and hot water systems. If your systems are fueled by gas, install carbon monoxide detectors. Statistics show that fatal carbon monoxide accidents occur in every state each year.

See to it that you have smoke detectors on all floors of your house. They should be wired properly and checked every so often. If they are battery-powered, schedule battery testing.

Check your electrical outlets every month, including your circuit breaker. Check outlets in the kitchen, bathroom, garage, exterior structures, basement and other rooms.

Inspect crawlspaces at least once per year and check leaks, moisture and ductwork failures. When you open the way to the crawlspaces, the air coming from within should not feel damp and should not give out smells of mildew or mold.

From time to time, clean the gutters. Leaves and other litter left on the gutters for a long time hasten rot and block the smooth flow of rainwater.

Check the furnace for defects that could cause carbon monoxide poisoning. Incorrect installation of the furnace blower causes a build-up in carbon monoxide.

If after your house inspection, you found defects that put you and your house at risk, hire a house inspector that specializes in the parts that have defects or damages. It is also recommended that you hire a general contractor to make the house inspection. Oftentimes, general contractors inspect the house for free if they are contracted to make the necessary repairs.

Lastly, take comfort in the fact that you discovered defects earlier. This has reduced the cost of your repairs and has prevented any accidents arising from the defects. Indeed, house inspection reduces repair costs and saves lives.

Home Inspection

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