- Joseph & Michael Scaduto
WHAT TO DO - AFTER THE INSPECTION AND YOU OWN THE HOUSE
By Michael J. Scaduto
After all of the anxiety of looking for the home of your dreams, finding it and finally moving into it - there are still some important things that need to be done by you or a licensed professional.
First Things First - Safety And Security!
Do these things first for you and your families safety and security
Find a locksmith and change all door locks.
Reset key codes for garages, gates, etc.
Hide a spare key in a lockbox. (In a location only you know)
Test both fire and carbon monoxide detectors. (Or install if none present)
Test hot water temperature to avoid scalding. (120 degrees F. for sinks and 112 degrees F. for tubs and showers is considered as safe)
If present, make sure all motion lights and other security lights have working bulbs and are functional.
If needed have security cameras installed for the exterior of the building.
Put a fire extinguisher in the kitchen and one on each floor of the house.
Install smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
If not already labeled - Have electric circuits properly labeled in the electric service panel directory.
Locate all emergency shutoff switches (gas, oil, hot water, main water line, etc.,) and label them.
NEXT - INDOOR AIR QUALITY
Besides all of those noted safety and security recommendations, you should also be concerned with the indoor air quality of your newly purchased home.
It is very easy to forget about something invisible, but like many of the household tasks that you now must be aware of, having good indoor air quality is paramount to your health and your families health.
In the interest of having a healthy living environment in your home, here are
4 tips to make you and your family breathe a little easier.
1. Test for radon gas levels and install carbon monoxide detectors
You can't see or smell either one of these gases, but both of these gases can be deadly if left undetected!
Have your home tested for radon levels.
Purchase carbon monoxide detectors from any hardware store and install one on every floor of your home. If there is a garage it would be a good idea to install one there.
2. Run an air purifier to clear allergens and pollutants from the air.
Air quality can be improved by using an air purifier by filtering out pollen, dust, pet hair, and other irritants. Hepa air purifiers can also help in filtering out smoke particulates during wildfires.
3. Use a dehumidifier.
If your new home is prone to high moisture levels and dampness a dehumidifier should be used. Mold growths can be prevented by keeping humidity levels under 50%. Run a dehumidifier regularly and be sure to follow the manufacturer's maintenance requirements for keeping it clean.
4. Follow these daily best practices.
In addition to testing and buying equipment, the following simple habits can help maintain a good indoor air quality.
Open windows in each room - weather permitting.
Run the exhaust fan in your kitchen during and after cooking.
Run the bathroom exhaust fan after every shower.
Put doormats inside and outside your homes entrances.
Have a "no shoes" rule for inside the home.
Vacuum and dust on a regular basis.
Once you are a homeowner - you now are responsible for maintaining your domicile. Most of the following chores can be done by a homeowner, while some require the services of a licensed professional.
Clean out lint from the dryer hose and the dryer exhaust vent every 6 months. (Or as needed)
Clean the refrigerator coils once a year.
Clean kitchen and bathrooms air vents, now and as needed.
Test sump pump (if in place) monthly.
Change HVAC (heat/cooling) filters seasonally. (Or when dirty)
And schedule (heating/cooling) maintenance for spring and fall.
Clean gutters at minimum twice a year (spring and fall)
And keep ends of downspouts several feet away from the foundation.
If a septic system have tank pump annually.
ASSEMBLE AN EMERGENCY SUPPLY KIT WITH BASIC ITEMS
It is always a good idea to be prepare for an unexpected disaster.
The following is a sampling of things to have on hand in case of an emergency.
A supply of canned goods.
Water (1 gallon per person).
Blankets and warm clothing.
Flashlights with plenty of spare batteries.
Radio, TV, or mobile device with backup batteries.
Whistles - just in case need to signal your location.
Cell phone, charger with backup battery.
Put all important documents (like the following) in a safe location, such as a fireproof safe or a safety deposit box.
Original closing documents.
Lender contract information.
Property survey paperwork.
Home inspection report.
Final closing documents.
COMPILE A LIST OF LICENSED PROFESSIONALS
Find out from relatives, friends and neighbors what licensed professionals that they have had positive work related experiences with. Contact them and get a first-hand feeling about them. Once you have decided on which ones you feel comfortable with set up a contact list, similar to the following.
Plumber______________________________ Phone _________________
Electrician ____________________________ Phone _________________
HVAC Contractor________________________Phone _________________
Heating Contractor ______________________Phone _________________
Pest Control Exterminator_________________Phone _________________
Roofer________________________________ Phone _________________