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Home Resolutions 2020: Expert Edition

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Every year, you know your gutters will need to be cleaned out. You have to rake and mow the lawn, and every once and awhile, you need to apply a fresh coat of paint somewhere. But do you know what maintenance items you are missing? We asked Home Improvement Contractor Matt Van Cleve to give us his professional insight into essential maintenance that should definitely be on your to-do list.

What are the maintenance projects people might not consider but should consider in the new year? 

Matt Van Cleve: Landscaping, grounds, and water maintenance. Thoroughly cleaning gutters and leaders is always important. Pruning any trees with low-lying branches near the home is also critical, so the branches do not fall on your house with the snow during a winter storm.

The exterior of the home is a major maintenance project that is not always considered during this time of year. If you live in a climate with a harsh winter, you might consider power washing your home to remove mold and mildew buildup. Bear in mind that power washing will require temperatures that are above freezing. (Learn more about power washing your home in our vipTIPS.)

I'd also emphasize that anything with groundwater is important, and I'd be concerned about water migrating systems because that's where you could have a big problem. It could be a nightmare. If you have water that doesn't track away from the house, you could have ice situations in the winter, which is also a safety hazard.

What are the most frequent renovations you see in the first few months? 

Matt Van Cleve: Bathrooms first and kitchens second. Those are your big dollar items. People spend a lot of time in these two spaces. After that, I see customers looking to renovate the windows and doors in the home.

What is the one thing people should budget to fix/update in the coming year outside of the usual septic, water, heat, etc.?  

Matt Van Cleve: This depends on the property. If the house is older, you've got to consider the electrical system and/or the mechanical aspects of the house. A roof could also be a budget-buster if it's out of date. Finally, interior painting is a quick and easy way to update an out-of-date interior.

Get more expert advice in our vipTIPS, available exclusively to our members. Subscribe today with a 90-day, risk-free trial!

Does your home need professional attention? Learn more about Van Cleve Home Works and how they can assist with your next home improvement project. 

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