I've had several houses now and realized at some point everyone moves. Only the reasons for moving vary:
- Purchasing a new house, either to upgrade, downsize or get a new location.
- Downsizing to an apartment.
- Cohabitating with a new partner.
- Death in the family.
- Corporate relocation.
Since moving at some point is inevitable, you must always keep the house. The best way to do this is an annual renewal process, and the best time to start this is in the Winter, when you're stuck in the house and notice all the little things that need improvement. Make a list of everything that should be renewed over the year, budget for it and get it done. This way you'll never be caught in the situation of massive repair projects when you need to sell a house 15 years later.
Examples of renewal projects:
- Fix nail pops and repaint. Nail pops will occur in the walls throughout the course of the house. Better to tackle them sooner than later. Once you're done with the repairs, freshening up the paint on the walls is always a good call. Always remember to keep the colours neutral whenever possible. Nobody is buying an bright orange bedroom, or a neon green kitchen!
- Ceramic tiles will chip and crack over the years. Keeping up with the cracks is better than having so many bad tiles that you just want to rip out the whole wall.
- Grout will get stained. Whether it's a matter of a couple of years or a few, the grout (especially in the bath area) can get just nasty. Replacing tile grout is a great may to make things look clean again. It's a fairly simple task (talk to a professional about the materials). Stay on top of it.
- Replace old counter tops and cabinets. First, you want to do this because counter tops and cabinets come in and out of style. It's nice to have something that looks new and since it can be a big project you need to plan for it. Second, counter tops and cabinets can get damaged by water and general use.
- Lawn care is essential. A potential buyer will see your lawn longer before getting into your house, and some buyers have been known to not even go into a house that has no curb appeal. A lawn that is damaged will take a while to repair unless you lay down new sod. This can be avoided by simply removing weeds, over seeding the grass, and watering it once a week. Keep the flower gardens tidy. Level any patio stones that are uneven. Simple stuff!
My Handyman Resume
Over the years, I've had to tackle a few jobs around the house:
- Replace master bathroom sink faucet and drain.
- Replace kitchen sink and faucet with new sink and faucet with integrated sprayer and soap dispenser.
- Install new sliding doors for foyer closet.
- Regrout tiles in bathroom/shower.
- Install new circuit breakers and run dedicated outlets for computer equipment.
- Move washer and dryer from one side of the basement to another. This included moving all the plumbing a distance of 30 feet, and drilling a new dryer vent through a solid brick wall.
- Paint concrete basement floor
- Build door through supporting wall, from kitchen to garage. This included building a set of steps (3 feet in height).