How To Own It Right -12 Tips from Mike Holmes

When problems start happening in the home most people want to blame something or someone else, usually the builder or the contractor. But sometimes the source of the problem isn’t a bad contractor, sub trade or builder—it might be a little closer to home.

A home needs regular maintenance, like a car. It is your responsibility to keep on top of maintenance tasks before they become bigger issues. Here are some tips to keep in mind.

    1. Fix from the outside in. New shiny countertops can wait. A leaky roof cannot.
    2. Run your bathroom fan 30 minutes after you’ve finished your shower. Also, make sure you crack the door or a window open while the fan runs. If the bathroom is sealed, it restricts airflow & your fan can’t push warm air outside.
    3. Keep your eavestrough clean and clear of debris. A clogged eavestrough can prevent water from safely draining away from your home.
    4. When hiring your next contractor for home repair or home improvement projects, make sure to ask them for references. You will want to hear from people who have experienced their work firsthand, how the project turned out, and if it was built to last. And any contractor that can’t – or won’t provide them? That’s a red flag.
    5. I say this a lot but a simple job that homeowners often neglect is caulking around your windows and doors. If you see caulking that is cracked, it should be replaced. 
    6. Clean or vacuum the vents and grilles throughout the entire house. It’s not a huge task and has major benefits for your furnace.
    7. Your mechanical room has sophisticated systems that take a lot of skill and expertise to install. Do not attempt any DIY fixes in there.
    8. Regularly monitor the humidity levels depending on the outside temperature. Getting the right balance of moisture in your home can sometimes feel like Goldilocks—it has to be just right. If there’s too much or too little your hardwood floors will tell you. Too much moisture, they’ll start to swell and buckle. Too little, you’ll start to see gaps and cracks.
    9. Don’t overspend on furniture and remodelling – give yourself time to adjust to the new expenses of homeownership.
    10. Prioritize the renovations that will improve your home’s energy efficiency
    11. Make sure there is proper air circulation in your home, check your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans to make sure they’re doing their job and removing moisture from the air. Have you tried the tissue test? Hold up tissue to your bathroom exhaust fan to see if it’s pulling in the tissue.
    12. Keep on top of seasonal maintenance tasks. Check out my checklist here:
      1. Winter Maintenance
      2. Spring Maintenance
      3. Summer Maintenance
      4. Fall Maintenance

About the Author: 

Mike Holmes is a professional contractor, television host, public speaker, educator, influencer, writer, and one of North America’s most trusted contractors. After working in the building industry for more than 35 years, Mike was asked to develop and host his own TV series, Holmes on Homes®, which became an international success and broke rating records. Since then, he has used his no-nonsense Make It Right® attitude to educate homeowners on proper building code, what to look for in contractors and their rights as homeowners. His TV shows are broadcasted in over 90 countries.

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