If you are interested in do-it-yourself or DIY home maintenance, a little research and some ingenuity are all you need. DIY tips and tricks allow you to handle most of your household needs without having to call on the services of your handy neighbourhood tradesman. Maintaining your home the DIY way can help you save quite a lot of money, as tradesmen can charge upwards of $40 for what can be simple fixes.
Some of the things in your home that require regular maintenance include electrical appliances, plumbing, house hold fixtures as well as your outdoor area.
For each of these areas, you should be able to manage regular maintenance issues and simple fixes, and only have to resort to a tradesman for major breakdowns.
The first step to running a DIY home is having all the right tools. You should invest in a toolkit with all the essentials like a screwdriver, measuring tape, a level, hand saw, hammer, pliers, test pen and electrical tape. Other tools which might prove useful on more than one occasion are a torch, a drill, ladder, and a set of wrenches. Unless you are planning on undertaking complex DIY renovation, you will not need major power tools. In fact a lot of hardware stores have rental facilities that allow you to rent power tools for a fee.
The next step would be to read up on DIY tips and tricks. The internet is an excellent tool for learning simple fixes like how to change a fuse or unclog your kitchen sink. You can also pick up skills from the people at your hardware store.
Some regular maintenance checks that you should conduct to avoid serious problems are:
- Clean out filters in air-conditioning/heating units
- Clean out the range hood filter above your stove
- Clean out your dishwasher filter to avoid food particles clogging the drain and possibly causing flooding of the kitchen area
- Remove leaf matter from gutters to avoid water overflowing into the eves
Prevention is the key to an effective DIY home maintenance plan. Preventive measures like avoiding a clog by not flushing anything apart from toilet paper, vacuuming window tracks or baiting your roof to avoid a rat infestation are great ways to steer clear of major hiccups. The rat prevention method for instance, also protects the integrity of your wiring, as the pesky beasts are fond of chewing through wiring. Mildew in bathrooms is a very common problem amongst households. Left to grow, mildew can become such a large problem that you may need to re-grout wet areas as well as re paint walls and ceilings. Ensure the fan is always utilised when showering or bathing, and use a mildew cleaning solution to stave off anything already growing. Ensure that taps are never over tightened. Over tightening of taps wears out the washer and causes leaks.
Taking the time to maintain your house on an on-going basis ensures that it is always in tip top shape. By picking up DIY tips and tricks, you will be able to fix most things on your own and will be less likely to have to turn to an expert, save for major issues. Furthermore, a well maintained home also has the potential to get a better resale value. So, the DIY way might just end up making you money!
Kay Barney is founder of Corporate Housing. In 1999, Kay and her husband were relocated to Melbourne. Arriving in Melbourne, with a one year old son, they was faced with the daunting task of finding a new home whilst living in cramped and expensive serviced apartment accommodation. The process was incredibly frustrating, exhausting and disappointing. Kay realised that there must be many people who find themselves in similar situations and the idea for Corporate Housing was born from this experience. Corporate Housing began offering fully furnished, executive quality accommodation for corporate clients on extended stays in Melbourne and quickly expanded to include other capital cities in Australia. The business today is based in Sydney and manages hundreds of furnished apartments with a client list which boasts some of Australia’s top corporations.
In her spare time, Kay enjoys horse-riding, renovating her home and spending time with her family.