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Home Improvement Help and Maintenance Tips

 

Energy Bills on the Rise

 

According to the US Department of Energy, homeowners spend, on average, $1,300 a year on utility bills, most of which is wasted energy from poorly insulated windows and doors. Simple energy efficient improvements can save 10% - 50% on energy bills and help reduce air pollution by reducing the amount of carbon dioxide released into the environment.

 

There are several quick “fixes” homeowners can do to reduce energy costs:

 

  • Install a programmable thermostat or set your thermostat back at night.

  • Insulate doors and windows with plastic, caulk and/or weather stripping. An uninsulated window or door can lose a lot of heat

  • Repair leaky faucets

  • Remember to turn off lights when they are not needed

  • Reduce your utility bill by up to 21% by turning down the thermostat from 70ºF to 65ºF Change light switches to dimmer switches and use lower-wattage bulbs

 

Many homeowners do not have the time or knowledge to do many of the simple repairs which could save them hundreds of dollars over time in utility bills. A small investment now and your energy costs could be significantly reduced in the future.

 

 

Curb Appeal

 

A buyer’s first impression is one that could set the sale of your home in motion. Curb appeal really does make a difference, it plays a large role in getting top dollar for your house. The first impression starts with the exterior of your house.

 

There are inexpensive things you can do to achieve good "curb appeal", such as:

 

  • Keep the grass freshly cut

  • Avoid clutter in the yard

  • Fresh stain on wooden fences

  • The front door needs to look good (fresh paint) if needed

  • Make sure that all door handles are tight and clean

  • Wash or paint the exterior of the house

  • Make sure the windows are cleaned inside and out

  • Make sure that gutters and downspouts are firmly attached, and in good working order Fresh mulch in flower borders

 

Tips for the interior include:

 

  • Avoid excessive pictures hanging on the wall

  • Don't leave household items sitting out on the counter

  • Keep rooms as open as possible

  • Clean or paint walls and ceilings

  • Carpets should be clean

  • Remove things from under the sink cabinets

  • Repair all plumbing leaks

  • Make sure all light fixtures are clean and free of dust

  • Keep the central air filter changed

  • Pour water in basement floor drains

  • Control cigarette and pet odor

 

When buying or selling real estate, remember that by hiring professionals you will get the most value for your house. Real Estate Professionals and Professional Home Inspectors are key members on your team to help you protect your investment.

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