Making home maintenance affordable and accessible | Bakersfield life

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Your home is more than your castle.

If you’re like most people, it’s also your biggest investment.

Maintaining the value of that investment is one of the reasons castle maintenance is so important. Of course, it will also improve your quality of life in your home.

How well your air conditioning cools on a hot summer day or your ability to use your fireplace when it’s cold outside are affected by how often you change filters or have your chimney swept.

Good home maintenance can work to reduce allergens, prevent illness and reduce injuries from accidents, according to technical advisors from the National Center for Healthy Housing.

Floor-to-ceiling home improvement costs can add up, but they can get much more expensive if projects aren’t taken care of regularly.

“A good HVAC, if you maintain that system, can last a few decades,” said Lee’o Whisenant of Old Ironsides Construction.

He suggested replacing the filter as often as once a month for optimal performance. Filters can cost less than $10.

Indeed, if it fails, the estimated cost of a new HVAC system is between $5,000 and $6,000 for a 1,200 square foot space, according to a Forbes.com estimator. This cost comes to about $7,000 to $8,000 for about 2,000 square feet.

do it yourself

The good news is that most home maintenance jobs can be done by the homeowner, especially with all the resources available online.

“There’s very little that people can’t do on their own because all the information is available online,” said Husein Shakir, owner of the DIY Depot in Bakersfield.

Shakir said he knew it was possible because the business owner had learned a lot using instructional videos on YouTube.

“I don’t mean everything can be done by yourself, but most things can,” Shakir said, noting that anything involving major wiring or plumbing should be done by a professional.

Stores like DIY Depot or Home Depot often have most of the materials one would need for home maintenance, as well as people who can offer advice on how to get started.

And even some renovations can be done yourself. James McKay offers advice on such projects in a blog on his company’s website, Modern Valley Construction, which offers tips on the best ways to do easier, better-looking maintenance projects such as painting, wallpaper and replacement of light fixtures.

Regarding how often certain maintenance work should be done, the Federal Ministry of Housing and Urban Development offers a seasonal checklist at bit.ly/DIYmaintenancechecklist.

The list includes advice on how often to perform maintenance, such as checking dishwasher hoses for leaks or cleaning and checking refrigerator drip tray and ice maker connections (annually) and when to check the batteries of smoke and carbon dioxide alarms (spring and fall). ).

Make things easier

Tim Hardt of Hardt Construction Services offered some tips to make the long list of required annual maintenance a little less daunting: “Keep a to-do list for your property that needs attention,” he said. . “Depending on the cost and severity of the issue, choose one or two items to address each month.”

No matter how handy you are, some people just don’t have the time to do all the maintenance needed to maintain the value of a home.

But there are services that can help you.

Hardt’s company offers a monthly and annual maintenance service, which can be started with a consultation that involves a handyman walking around the house and identifying what needs to be done and how often. The cost of the service depends on the age of the house, as well as its size and other potential problems.

“We often see residential and commercial properties where customers didn’t follow normal maintenance,” Hardt said, “and as a result ended up causing more damage and it ended up costing more.”

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