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South facing materials age fastest.
Have no direct ground to wood contact.
Rake leave and debris away from the house and leave 2" to 4" minimum of foundation showing. Look for peeling paint and loose caulking. Replace caulk-don't just go over old-remove and then add new. This is what keeps water out of your home.
Maintain a positive grade away from your house.
Look for cracks in brick or foundation mortar then to see if they get any larger. They may be nothing or signs of settlements.
Look for wood decay-termite tubes.
Clean up your house with a cleaning solution such as TSP and bleach. (Be careful around lawn and shrubs.) A power washer can be rented to speed up the job. This helps clean up and removes dirt, dust, cocoons etc...and helps preserves wood, vinyl, stucco-what ever siding and trim you have.
If you have a deck check the boards to see that you have a gap (spaces) between them. This is very important for drainage, otherwise it will shorten the life of the material. Check deck posts buried in the ground for rot.
Check your garage door to see if they reverse themselves under pressure.
Have your septic system checked out or pumped out.
Seal deck, brick or any exterior horizontal surface subject to snow and ice.
Wash windows in and out, check exterior sill covers for drips.
Check your roof - use binoculars if you are unable to get on it.
Gutters and downspouts must be kept clean and in proper condition-water must get away from the house.
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Check chimney flue, mantel and damper.
Check ceramic tiles - if loose grout, clean and seal. Replace if need be.
Check under sinks - shut off valves - look for green crust or water stains - catch problems early.
Pull out  refrigerator and vacuum coils and clean drip pan.
Check electrical outlets and test breakers.
Lubricate parts with WD40.
Vacuum smoke alarms, check for bugs and dust - test them.
Check burners - have a professional service clean it and tune up.
Keep an eye on fittings.
Check mechanical systems - they may need maintenance - plumbing - heating - cooling - wiring.
Ventilation - very important! Most houses don't have enough - don't cover vents in the attic.
Drain off bottom of hot water tank - sediments build up. Check pressure relief valve.
The key is an ounce of prevention.
Find any sign of trouble before it becomes big!

 

 
       
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