Tips For Looking After for Your New Construction Home
When you buy an existing property, you would need to conduct a thorough analysis of the place for any loose ends such as creaky doors and tricky toilet handles and if need be, spend some amount on getting the facilities in its place.
But a brand-new home comes fully packaged with every need of yours taken care of, yet it doesn’t mean that it will remain so forever. As you settle into your new home, general wear and tear of the house will take place over the years.
“Every product in the house has to acclimate and will acclimate,” says Geoff Bellchambers, vice president of quality assurance for Toll Brothers, a national luxury home builder.
It is inevitable to completely stop the house from the process of depreciation year-on-year, but to avoid the systems and surfaces breaking down faster than they should, you need to keep certain precautions in place.
Here is a list of few things to be kept in mind to keep your new construction house in top shape.
Tips for Caring for Your New Construction Home:
Take Builder’s Guidance and Ask Questions:
The whole purpose of moving into a completely new construction home is to avoid the hassles associated with building up a home from scratch or buying an already existing property which is most likely torn down; basically a move-in ready home for you and your loved ones.
The best part about a new home is that you will get a tour of the entire property from the construction manager and you have the upper hand there, you can ask questions that come to your mind regarding specifics about how everything works, where everything is located and what recommended maintenance is needed.
Confirm whether the house is completely ready for usage when the keys will be handed over to you or there is some work that’s pending. This point is crucial as the builder will be the best person to answer important stuff such as where the water shutoff valve is for the house and how to access the air filter in your furnace.
This is necessary in cases of a sudden power outage in future or some plumbing problems or simply when you need to perform some maintenance on your home down the line.
Make Owner Manuals Your Friend:
Many a time, we discard and even throw away owner’s manuals for various items because they are really boring. But also, they are extremely important, especially if you want to maintain and increase the life of your equipment.
Manuals tell you how everything works, how it all should be maintained and how often it should be looked after. Even if you have stacked up all the brand-new equipment, do not ignore their regular maintenance.
Key Land Homes, a home builder for the Minneapolis-St. Paul area based in Prior Lake, provides homebuyers with a calendar of recommended maintenance to help keep on top of the recommended changes.
For example, your water heater should be drained yearly to remove sediment buildup from the bottom of the tank “so it doesn’t shorten the life of the water heater,” says Tom Schutz, department of manager for key Land Homes.
Look After The Air Filters:
For some equipment such as air filters, go an extra mile even above the manufacturer’s recommendations. Schutz says homeowners should change air filters monthly, even if the filter is marketed as good for up to 90 days.
“Filters that we have today, they are more hypoallergenic, so they trap more particles which slow down the air flow,” Schutz says. With more particles trapped in the filter, the furnace fan and air flow is less efficient throughout the house.
Look Out For The Yard:
When you construct a house, the surrounding soil gets disturbed and it takes time for the soil to resettle. The overall grade of the soil will most likely change, and take extra efforts to make sure you don’t have water flowing toward your house rather than away from it.
“It takes seven years for the soils to recompact again back to their original state,” Schutz says. “So that’s where it’s important to maintain the outside soils, so the drainage around the house does not become an issue.”
If you are maintaining your yard regularly, you will likely catch if it’s sloping toward your house. This is when you can regrade your yard and consider adjusting drain pipes to be extended farther from the house to avoid erosion from water around your foundation, or even water leaks into your basement or crawl space.
Understand How Resource Usage Impacts House:
Your home usage habits will have a bearing on the house too. For example, if you do not use air conditioning during summers, the paints and wooden flooring will suffer from the higher humidity levels.
Bellchambers says the number of people living in the home can even change the lifetime of your heating, ventilating and air-conditioning system, washing machine or floors. When the house has just two people living in the family as compared to a family of five, “you’ve got different amounts of moisture in the space, so your systems are going to be under different levels of stress, and so AC might be cranking at different levels for longer,” he says.
Understand Your Home Warranty:
Just like any new equipment you purchase, your new home will come with a warranty, either directly from the builder or by a third party, that covers certain issues that may arise within the first 12 months or so of owning the property.
The warranty may cover different aspects from workmanship and materials that were a part of construction, including windows, the HVAC, electrical, plumbing and some structural scenarios. This will save you from any issues that arise within the period of the warranty, obviously, only if the issue is covered under the warranty. Should any other expense come up because of one’s neglect and outside the stipulations of the warranty, you will have to bear the loss from your own pocket.
To help homeowners to stay on top of the nitty-gritties associated with warranties for newly built homes, the Federal Trade Commission provides an information page with resources for homeowners. For example, FTC specifies that you are legally required to have a third-party warranty for the mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration or U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, to help guarantee the quality of workmanship on the property
Your home is your asset, which will fetch you great returns once you sell it to someone else, provided you maintain the house over the years and use it efficiently. The new house comes at its peak working condition and is far from the hue and cry of an older home, and it’s up to you to keep it that way or not.