When you purchase and move in to a new home, the first few weeks are busy remodeling, designing and unpacking. You want to make sure you home looks as great as you feel about it, and settling in is priority #1.
But before you get too comfortable, right now is the best time to locate spots in your home that could cause future problems. If you catch them now, it could mean great money savings for you long-term.
Here are 7 things to do as soon as possible to lower the overall cost of maintenance in your home.
- Set your water heater to the optimum temperature. Did you know that most people will not use water that is hotter than 120 degrees Fahrenheit? Reducing your temperature to 120 early on will not only save on unnecessary heating, but also keep you in the right temperature zone to kill harmful bacteria.
- Invest in some ceiling fans. These are great for keeping air moving in your home while using minimal energy. When the fans are on, you can keep your temperature a degree or two away from what you would generally set the thermostat to. Be sure to set the fan to blow downward in the summer and upward in the winter.
- Consider a clothing rack in the laundry room. If you are not in a hurry, allow your clothes to dry on a rack and let your dryer rest. You’ll still have dry clothes, but with a smaller energy bill.
- Check all the plumbing. If you assume all the plumbing is working properly, you may not notice the leaky faucet or constantly-running toilet. Repair or replace any incorrectly functioning pipes to prevent mold, costly future repairs and possible flooding.
- Clean or replace air filters and vents. The air you breathe in your home is very important to your health, so be sure to remember to check the cleanliness of it! Replace your air filter (located in your air handling unit) and clean all the vents in the house, wiping away dust and moving obstructions. You’ll increase the circulation of air and reduce the pressure needed to make the air flow properly.
- Seal your home from air leaks. Making sure your windows and doors are properly sealed can be the difference between having money and seeing it literally fly out the door. The process of weatherproofing is easy and the Department of Energy has a great guide to help you fix any issues.
- Insulate your home. Check the attic and exposed water pipes in your home to ensure proper insulation. In the attic, there should be 6 or more inches of insulation everywhere. Exposed water pipes are also important to insulate, as they carry warm water from the heater to every faucet in the house. You’ll speed up the time it takes for your water to warm and you’ll help keep it warmer, longer.
Good luck in your new home and please share any additional tips for new homeowners!