So you’re about to become a new homeowner. You’ve just learned (or you’re about to learn) about the intricacies and hassles of purchasing a new home: the negotiations, the paperwork, the bank loans, the paperwork, the inspections, and – of course – the paperwork.
But checking the HVAC system, electrical components, and plumbing of your new home does not have to be on that list of new homeowner plagues. Here’s a list of a few things you’ll want to keep at the top of your checklist:
- Check and clean refrigerator and freezer coils. If the previous homeowner hasn’t checked these recently, there could be condensation build-up. That condensation freezes and blocks the coils, causing leakage and water damage – not something you want to have to deal with as your first problem in your new home.
- Test all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. This seems like an obvious one, but it can easily be forgotten. Make sure you have plenty of spare batteries on hand so you can replace them right away.
- Check the hot water heater for leaks. There are plenty of things to check with the plumbing of your new home, but the hot water heater should be priority number one. It seems like it could be a small irritation, but it can quickly turn into a massive problem, causing major flooding and damage to flooring, subflooring, and walls – which quickly turns into repair costs.
- Check all vents (inside and outside), and make sure there are no obstructions. Closed vents inside the home can actually drive up your energy consumption and cause humidity problems.
- Check for water damage in the attic. This is a sign of a roof leak, which will cause a literal trickle-down effect. Leaks that aren’t controlled right away, like the frozen coils, can cause major water damage to the structure of the home.
- Look for signs of rodents and pests in the basement, crawlspaces, and any exposed wood. Rodents and pests can become more than a nuisance quickly, causing foundational damage and even spreading illness in the house.
- Examine the foundation for any cracks. This is a high priority check – it should probably even be the first item on your list. Fixing a foundation can be pricy, but it’s much more costly to replace it if it’s not caught early on.
There are many more elements you’ll want to check, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. To make it easier, we’ve compiled a checklist for you so you don’t leave anything out.