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10 Bare Necessities Every Home Should Have

You’ve done it! You’ve finally gone ahead and purchased your first home, full of all the dream furniture appliances, wall-paper and coloring, and furniture you’ve ever dreamed of, right? Well, if you’re like most Americans…not exactly. A starter-home is usually what most Americans buy when they secure their first piece of property. And though many starter-homes are exciting to purchase, they might be smaller and not as updated as newer, more expensive homes. Whether you plan on living here and saving money, or you plan on flipping it, you still should have all your basic home needs met. No matter how long you plan to live in your home, it should provide you not only with comfort and style, but also safety. Even if your home is a fixer-upper, and you feel it will be daunting to take on all these home-improvement tasks, do not worry.

Every home has bare necessities that need to be taken care of right away. And we don’t mean little things, like furniture and family address stamps for your new home. In addition to the small things like plates, cushions, and picture frames, bare necessities and basic home needs involve a lot of maintenance to your home. Taking care of these 10 basic home needs first allows you to save money on possible damage in the future while ensuring your home is properly maintained for years to come. Learn to love the home you’re in, do a bit of research, and take care of these 10 basic home needs to keep your home livable for years to come.

1. An Updated Kitchen

Probably the most exciting part of a home is the kitchen. It’s been said that a home’s kitchen is where the home’s heart is, and it’s true. With holidays, daily meal-prep, and busy dinners and lunches, the kitchen should be what homeowners spend a good amount of time updating. In fact, even a small kitchen remodel has an average return on investment (ROI) of 82.7% when selling your home. Having a kitchen updated will save you on energy costs, heating, and even keep you safe.

Old refrigerators can eat up a fortune in energy costs. Old microwaves and stoves with gas leaks can prove to be extremely dangerous. Make sure you update your appliances, as well as update any smoke and carbon monoxide detectors that are near your kitchen in order to stay safe. Have fun with the kitchen remodel! Stainless steel electric stoves are super-trendy, safe, energy-efficient, and make your basic home needs look like luxury. New counter-tops and the addition of a kitchen island can take your breath away. Even if you choose a gas or electric stove (both of which have their pros and cons), or choose a different sink or cabinets, spare no expense when it comes to your kitchen.

2. A Strong Roof

Whether you live in sunny California, or wet Pennsylvania, you’re gonna want to make sure your roof repairs are high on the list of basic home needs. It’s imperative that you begin your purchase of a new home by conducting a thorough roof inspection and addressing any problems you might find in the roofing. Though thorough roof inspections are done by lenders in order to protect their investment, it’s good to get a second opinion and see for yourself whether or not your roof is adequately strong and insulated.

Leaks, weak and cracking tile roofing, even “hot spots” where more heat is escaping can all be addressed early-on, and help you avoid a heavy bill later on. Don’t risk having to pay for a roof replacement. Research “roofing companies near me” in order to get a professional expert, quote, and work done.

3. A Strong Foundation

A foundation repair of a home can prove to be one of the most costly there is and is rarely covered by insurance. One can expect to pay on average a total of $5,857 to repair a foundation. Foundations can be damaged by a variety of factors, including cracks in the foundation, concrete repair needs, poor soil conditions, poor grounding preparations, and flooding.

Whatever the case may be, the foundation is often overlooked by homeowners, but should remain high-priority in terms of basic home needs. The foundation is in every way the bare necessity of your home! Without a strong foundation, the home itself faces safety issues, including collapse. Inspect the foundation thoroughly before purchasing your home, and maintain it extensively to keep you safe and save you thousands of dollars in damages.

4. An Updated Garage

An updated garage is not only essential to keep your home liveable, but also to keep your home safe. A manual garage door provides a certain level of protection to your vehicles and possessions from theft, but an automatic garage door leaves little room for stolen goods. An automatic garage door installation could be what keeps your car or other valuables inside your garage from being taken. Faulty garage doors can sometimes lead to accidents such as closing on people, falling fast and slamming into someone’s head, and even failing to open up. If you have an automatic garage control, these accidents would be much less likely to happen.

In addition to keeping up with the security side of a garage, make sure your garage is nice and tidy to make life easier on you. Loads of projects like auto-body work and carpentry can be done inside of a clean garage. Why not utilize stylish shelving and storage units to keep your garage as useful as possible?

5. Comfortable Insulation

Doing proper maintenance and inspecting your insulation can help keep your family comfortable during those hot summer months, and cold winter nights. Added insulation in a home can actually help lower energy costs as well, so keep this in mind while looking for ways to improve your basic home needs.

Some common types of insulation are cellulose, fiberglass, and foam board that can add a layer of protection and comfort to your home. Look at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Home Energy Saver calculator to get an idea of how much R-value, or thickness of insulation, your home needs. In addition, don’t forget to inspect all areas of your home with a professional, including the basement and behind outlets, when checking your insulation.

6. Working Plumbing

Having adequate plumbing is essential not only for indoors, but outdoors of your home as well. The cold winter months can cause your plumbing system to fail if you did not “winterize” it before-hand. A plumbing system can become damaged in temperatures of 32 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. This cracked plumbing system can be costly to repair, so it’s important to take this into account if you’re purchasing a home in a cold environment.

Besides causing low water pressure, no water at all, and the dreaded clogged toilet, a faulty plumbing system can also cause other problems. Running toilets, which are much more of a hassle, and pesky dripping sinks are other culprits. Contact plumbing services as soon as possible if you notice signs of a failing plumbing system, and in order to help you prepare, as new homeowners, for the upcoming summer and winter months.

7. Draft-Free Doors and Windows

Stylish, modern, and sleek, doors and windows can provide a home with its personality, and be used as a statement to those looking in. However, it’s important to maintain your basic home needs by maintaining your windows and doors, no matter how good they might look. Sliding french doors and windows usually only last about 20 years. If your home is older than this, you might consider contacting a professional to fix issues with your windows and doors.

If those frameless glass doors or gorgeous bay windows are foggy, letting in drafts, or have trouble closing, it’s time to get them maintenanced. Don’t ignore these simple basic home needs. Failing windows and doors can increase your energy costs by not providing enough insulation, and also leave you susceptible to break-ins by providing a weak point-of-entry. Don’t take the risk!

8. A Great Patio Deck

On top of providing a great relaxation area, your patio can also serve as a statement to your neighbors as well. A patio should not only be stylish, but also properly maintained in order to ensure it is safe. Ensure your deck is not rotting, bending, or otherwise in need of repair to keep it from sinking under you. If you need to reinforce your deck with a coat of stain or sealant for the upcoming heat and cold, do so during the warm spring and summer months. Sand down any rough patches, and hammer down any hazardous rusty nails to keep your feet safe.

Also, look at awning services to provide a nice shaded area for you to enjoy during the summer months. Roll-out, quick and easy set-ups are all great options for awnings. In addition, different colors and materials can make your home even more unique.

9. Clean Septic Tanks

Cross your T’s and dot your I’s when conducting your basic home needs maintenance, and look at your home’s septic tank to ensure it is up and running. If you live in a large city, chances are your home doesn’t have a septic tank and instead has a municipal septic system. However, if you live outside the city, make sure to prepare for the year by cleaning your septic tank annually, if your home gathers sewage there.

Ask about the state of the septic tank in your new home, and remember that septic tanks must be cleaned every two to three years on average. If you notice issues come up with your sewage system, consider new septic installations to your home to prevent clogged pipelines. Contact a professional for help.

10. Clean HVAC System

HVAC systems are part of those basic home needs that must be maintained throughout the months and years. An HVAC system stands for heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning, with some modern systems also incorporating filtration and cleaning as well. Make sure that your home has a working and updated HVAC system to save you money on energy costs, as well as keep your family safe while breathing in clean, filtered air.

HVAC filters must be replaced once they get dirty. Make sure to check these filters, and replace them in one to several months. In addition, to ensure your AC doesn’t go out unexpectedly during those blazing summer months, have a professional conduct a proper inspection of your HVAC system beforehand. Even little things, such as ill-maintained grass and weeds around your system can cause it to malfunction, costing you money in increased energy and heating bills. In addition, much like windows and doors, HVAC systems, no matter how well-looking and maintained, last only 15 to 20 years. The HVAC is one of the most crucial of basic home needs, and its maintenance and upkeep should be treated as such.

Maintain a Great Home, Inside and Out

Though as a new homeowner you must now be made responsible for every issue in your home, conducting proper maintenance is fairly easy, straight-forward, and can save you thousands in repair costs (and headaches). These bare necessities are not just to keep your home looking good, but feeling good and maintaining them helps them fulfill their purpose in your home for years to come.

Being a homeowner means more than just having the latest trendy furniture and garden set-up. Being a homeowner involves taking care of basic home needs, and making sure these bare necessities, on top of others not listed, are taken care of in order to maximize your comfort and safety at home. Be proud to be a maintenance-savvy, responsible, homeowner!

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