New Year’s Resolution for Home Owners

The start of a new year is a good time to establish different goals. And one of yours may be to keep your home in great shape. To that end, here are some homeowner resolutions to put on your list for 2023.

1. Conduct a Home Assessment

Your home has a lot of different facets. A good way to organize yourself for 2023 and know which items need to be addressed first is to do a thorough home assessment. Angie Hicks, chief customer officer at home improvement network Angi, says the best way to go about this is to pretend that you’re a home buyer evaluating a property you’re looking to purchase.

Walk through your home room by room and make a list of the problems you’re seeing, she says. Then, group them into different categories.

Hicks says mechanical and structural issues should be grouped into one bucket, cosmetic issues into another and wish list items into a third. That way, if you’re on a limited budget, you can prioritize where your money should go.

2. Build an Emergency Fund for Home Repairs

When you own a home, a lot can go wrong. And it’s important to prepare for that financially.

Hicks says most people should expect to spend 1% to 3% of their home’s value on annual maintenance and repairs. If you want to avoid unpleasant financial surprises, you may want to err on the higher end of that range.

“You don’t want home to be stressful,” Hicks says. Knowing you’re equipped to pay for repairs can help you get more enjoyment out of your home.

3. Test Your Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Every homeowner needs smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. But it’s not enough to just outfit your home with these safety devices – it’s also important to make sure they’re working properly.

Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors commonly come equipped with test buttons. Just hold the buttons down and wait for the beeps to make sure your units are working properly. And while you’re testing, take a minute to remove accumulated dust that could compromise your devices’ performance. And remember to replace the batteries regularly.

4. Clean Out Your Gutters

Clogged gutters can lead to improper drainage, which can lead to water damage inside and outside of your home.

Aim to do a thorough gutter cleaning at least once a year. Hicks says you may want to hire a pro for that. Any time you’re doing work that involves balancing on a tall ladder, there’s the potential for injury. You may be better off outsourcing your gutter cleaning and avoiding that problem.

5. Clean Your Appliances

Debris that accumulates under, on top of and around your appliances could cause them to work less efficiently. Hicks suggests cleaning your appliances thoroughly a few times a year, especially if you have pets. Pet hair can collect underneath your fridge in particular and compromise its performance.

6. Inspect Your Roof

A solid roof can protect your home from weather events and keep water out. Hicks says you should inspect your roof once a year, but you don’t necessarily have to climb up there and put yourself at risk of injury. Instead, she says, walk around and look out for things like curling shingles, which will tell you that your roof needs work.

7. Trim Your Trees

Trimming your trees is a good thing to do at least once a year. Pay specific attention to limbs that hangs over the roof or impeded light or connectivity wires. Additionally bear in mind the hurricane season, which if left untrimmed, trees can be become a real nuisance and even life threatening under storm conditions.