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15 things smart homeowners do every year

Sarah Tolle – Homify Canada Sarah Tolle – Homify Canada
Elegance and colour in a Dulwich home Modern living room by Tailored Living Interiors Modern
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Being responsible for a home is no simple matter. You are charged with making decisions and doing tasks which, although tedious, will benefit you in the long run. In this guide, you'll find 15 tips for running a successful household so you can focus on enjoying the beauty of your home and its inhabitants!

​1. Check your home according to the contents of your insurance

Every year, assess: have you bought any new large furniture or household assets? Make sure the contents of your insurance match what you currently own. It's best to talk this over sitting down with a home insurance professional.

​2. Clean your heating system

White quartz worktop with undermount sink Modern kitchen by Style Within Modern
Style Within

White quartz worktop with undermount sink

Style Within

Occasionally, you need to air out your heating system, as there are times when vents get clogged or poorly insulated ducts get filled with moisture and freeze in the winter. This isn't a DIY undertaking – get an energy specialist or heat and cooling systems professional.

​3. Clean and drain pipes

Belgravia - Laundry/Ironing Room off Roof Terrace by Meltons Classic

Belgravia – Laundry/Ironing Room off Roof Terrace


You might need to do this more than once a year, but at least once a year you should clean out your pipes. A plumber can come with specialized tools for cleaning long drains, but you can also maintain your pipes with anti-clog solutions that you pour down the drain. You should also remove the drain apparatus on the washing machine, sinks, etc, and remove debris.

​4. Update the look of your home

Changing the look of a room brings a sense of rejuvenation, and for many, making seasonal changes to decor is one of the best parts about being at home! Make it manageable by going room by room, changing the kitchen one year and the living room the next, or undertake a complete overhaul. Talk with an interior designer if you need help planning big changes.

​5. Check the roof

 Quickly spotting a broken or blown away roof tile makes sure that your home does not suffer water damage.

​6. Clean the gutters

Proper rainwater drainage is very important, especially if you want your foundation to remain strong and your basement leak-free. Spending an afternoon on the ladder with a bucket and gloves is a highly intelligent investment in your home!

​7. Building check

Hilltop stone farm buildings converted and extended to form modern family home Modern houses by Des Ewing Residential Architects Modern
Des Ewing Residential Architects

Hilltop stone farm buildings converted and extended to form modern family home

Des Ewing Residential Architects

As new technology and living standards are created, assess your lifestyle. Perhaps it's time to invest in an energy-efficient washing machine, or to have a professional assess your home's heat loss.

​8. Water damage check

The Cotes Mill Shaker Kitchen by deVOL Kitchens Rustic
deVOL Kitchens

The Cotes Mill Shaker Kitchen

deVOL Kitchens

Water damage can rot wood and create possibilities for mold and mildew. There are professionals who specialize in locating and treating mold in homes – if you notice strange smells or colouration on your walls, call them!

​9. Clean and re-organize the garage

Everyone knows how a garage can accumulate clutter over the year. Smart homeowners spend a day cleaning out their garage and getting things organized, clean, and useful again.

​10. Check for dips and cracks, and repair them

Full House Renovation with Crittall Extension, London Classic style houses by HollandGreen Classic

Full House Renovation with Crittall Extension, London


There are places in the yard, sidewalk, and driveway that tend to sag over time. Sometimes this is due to a rainwater issue – is rain accumulating in puddles around the base of your home? Are plants starting to creep through the cracks in the driveway? These problems only worsen with time – pay attention and have them addressed sooner rather than later.

​11. Access security

Wood Casement Windows by arisadam18 Modern

Wood Casement Windows


Do your windows and doors have proper locks? Talk with a home security professional or your local police department to find out how to design a more secure space. 

​12. Trim the trees and bushes

Trees and shrubs that grow close to your home need to be maintained by heavily cutting back branches at least once every spring.

​13. Check the deck

If you have a wooden patio, check to make sure the surface remains well-sealed. If not, you can sand it and apply an additional coat of varnish, stain, or sealant.

​14. Clean out your cabinets

eclectic  by Johnny Grey, Eclectic
Johnny Grey

The Cupboard

Johnny Grey

A comprehensive, well-stocked cupboard is a delight to the eye. In this photo you see a good example of how nice it is to use a clean and organized storage space!

​15. Discard old medicines

industrial  by Retro Living, Industrial
Retro Living


Retro Living

Do you have a medicine cabinet with drugs which have expired or that you no longer use? Throw them away (don't flush them down the drain – instead, dispose of them according to your city's ordinances). Many cities have a special receptacle for prescription medicines.

Feeling inspired to renew and update your living space? Stay on top of trends with this ideabook: Watch for this home decor trends in 2017

What do you think of these home ownership tips? Comment on this home maintenance guide below!
Modern houses by Casas inHAUS Modern

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