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Home maintenance projects to take on this spring

While spring cleaning is certainly important and rewarding, you'll also want to engage in some vernal home-maintenance projects.
3/23/2017 7:58:34 PM

Everyone knows that spring is the time to give your home a complete cleaning overhaul. While spring cleaning is certainly important and rewarding, you'll also want to engage in some vernal home-maintenance projects.

Now that winter has come and gone, it's time to inspect some essential areas of your home that may have suffered over the past few months.

Roof

Depending on where you live, there's a good chance your roof put up with a lot of abuse this winter. Snow, rain, ice and wind can all cause serious damage to your roof. But many homeowners don't realize the extent to which their roofs have degraded until it's too late.

Don't let mold in your walls or a hole in your attic be what tips you off. Instead, be proactive and climb up there yourself - or hire a professional to do that part for you.

Either way, spring is the ideal time to address issues in your roofing. Any missing or broken shingles need to be replaced promptly. If any have shifted out of their place even slightly, you may want to invest in new fasteners, Bob Vila suggested.

Sometimes shingle damage is a symptom of a larger problem. If all of your missing or broken shingles occur in one area of your roof, take a closer look. There could be mold, rot or other damage that's hidden from sight.

Siding

Like your roof, your exterior walls can take a beating during the winter. Hail can dent aluminum or vinyl, ice can chip paint, and rain can create water damage on just about any siding material. Damaged siding can allow moisture to seep into your home and lead to water damage or mold. To a family of mice or a squirrel, warped siding or a hole in your shingles may look quite accommodating. On top of all of that, your home's value sinks when you let your curb appeal deteriorate.

Luckily, fixing or replacing your siding doesn't have to be challenging. Angie's List pointed out that aluminum siding can be installed on a sunny Saturday afternoon. For those less inclined to take on large do-it-yourself projects, homeowners can replace their siding for as little as a few hundred dollars, according to HomeAdvisor.

Insulation

The best time to truthfully evaluate the state of your insulation is following the coldest months of the year. Consider how comfortable you felt last winter - were you constantly shivering or wrapping yourself in blankets? Did you make double-checking the thermostat a regular habit? If so, it might be time to replace your insulation.

Angie's List explained that replacing insulation in your attic floor can be effective in keeping your home cool in the coming warmer months, and warm in the winter.

If you live in an older home that hasn't had an insulation update, there's a good chance it isn't very energy efficient. Insulation recommendations have changed over time, explained Energy.gov. Take some time to check for insulation in your walls, or consider using an infrared camera to detect where your home is losing heat.

HVAC system

Poor insulation isn't the only cause of a cold home in the winter. If your furnace is past its prime (between 15 and 25 years, according to the San Francisco Chronicle), consider replacing it before summer ends.

While you're thinking about your HVAC system, also consider the hot months ahead. Now is the time to invest in a new air conditioner if your current one is on its last legs.

Deck or patio

Now that the weather is warming up, you're probably thinking about the first get-together you'll host outdoors. Make sure your deck or patio is presentable for all of your spring and summer gatherings. Sweep off the dirt, debris and dead leaves, and wash the surface.

If you have a wooden deck, repaint it. Also, sand down any jagged wood to prevent splinters, and replace any warped boards.

Lawn and garden

Once your deck or patio is all spruced up, it's time to focus on the rest of your yard. Rake dead grass, twigs and leaves, and plant flowers or bushes to add some color.

Carefully chosen and strategically placed plants and trees can have cost- and energy-saving benefits as well. Plant one or two deciduous trees on the west, east or northwest side of your home, U.S. News & World Report suggested. Shrubs, succulents and vines can also help reduce energy use in your home.

Academy Mortgage is one of the top independent purchase lenders in the country as ranked in the 2015 CoreLogic Marketrac Report. Visit www.academymortgage.com to find a loan, get a rate, or calculate your payment today.