When most of us think about home improvement, we tend to consider making things look pretty, stylish and comfortable. But is our desire for making cosmetic changes overriding the need to take a closer look at more important things?
Unfortunately, there are many different areas of your home that could be causing you grief – yet are invisible to all but the trained eye. And when it comes to home improvement, it’s these particular areas that are important to fix, rather than the pattern or shade of your drapes.
Let’s take a look at the hidden dangers that could be lurking in your home.
As the old saying goes, you’re never less than a few yards away from a rat. But rodents aren’t your only problem – woodworm, termites and all kinds of other pests could be damaging your home without you realizing.
Let’s take termites as the perfect example. They can burrow deep into your walls and timber unnoticed, and spend years eating their way out from the inside. There are a few signs to watch out for, but the reality is that by the time you notice a lot of damage will already be done.
With this in mind, make sure you get a pest inspection performed on your home every once in a while – once a year if you live in an old home. And always get an inspection before selling or buying any home.
Your foundations are buried deep beneath a few hundred tons of granite, and impossible to see with your eyes. And the first you will know of any foundational issues in your home is when your basement walls start to crack or your home starts to shift and sag.
Let’s be clear – the longer you leave foundational problems, the more expensive they are going to be to get fixed. Your best bet is to get a professional home inspector in to check your foundations once every few years or so. You should also do this before selling your home as if there are any problems it’s going to be hard to sell your home to anyone at anything less than a knockdown price.
Few of us really know what’s going on above our heads, as roofs are inaccessible and impossible to see from street level. And even if you make occasional visual checks from your attic space, it can be incredibly difficult to spot problems.
Damaged shingles, broken tiles, and warped or rotting beams could be letting in small amounts of water that are hard to see and cause big trouble further down the line. Again, it’s important to get a check every once in a while, to spot trouble before it begins to develop into something more serious.
Everyone loves to make their homes look beautiful, of course. But the most important home improvements you can make are actually hidden from plain view. It’s vital that you are aware of what can go wrong and take steps to prevent minor issues turning into enormous – and expensive – problems.