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Helpful Property Maintenance Tips

Jan 25, 2008
One of the most important factors in keeping the value of your house high is excellent property maintenance.

Value is determined by, among other things, how much a buyer wants your home. So if you keep your house fresh, clean and well looked after, you are much more likely to realise a top price for it when it's time to sell.

Here is a handy guide to essential property maintenance for your home:

Tools for the job

You need to build up a kit of essential tools. That way, no matter what needs fixing or which emergencies are thrown at you, you will always have something to hand to perform a fix.

You'll need the basics, such as a range of screwdrivers, spanners, a hammer, and pliers. It would also be handy to keep basic electricians' tools handy, such as special pliers to strip wires when you rewrite plugs. A wrench can be handy for plumbing problems, and insulation and gaffer tape will have hundreds of uses.

It's also good property maintenance practice to keep consumables such as fuses and light bulbs in stock in your house. Inevitably a fuse will blow on Sunday evening when the shops aren't open. Keep a range of fuses and bulbs dry and warm. You should also buy washers in case of a dripping tap.

Other handy products to keep around are a sink unblocker, grout filler to prevent leaks in the bathroom, and a number of different sized screws and wall plugs.

One final essential in your property maintenance tool kit is a decent ladder. For safety reasons, it should be big enough to reach the very top of your house without you having to stretch out. Keep your ladder well secured and locked up in your garage or chained to the side of the house. Not only are they a target for thieves (especially the expensive aluminium ones), but your own ladder could be used to burgle your home!


The poor floors in your home get more abuse than most other surfaces, especially if you have young children. The key to keeping carpets and hard floors looking their best is preventing dirt getting in, and then cleaning it quickly when it does.

Use door mats at each entrance and clean floors regularly, at least once a week. Sweep hard floors and clean them monthly with a specialist cleaner that won't make them slippery. Keep a powerful carpet stain remover handy and treat stains immediately. It's worth looking at getting carpets steam cleaned once a year - if you can't be bothered, get a professional in to do it for you. The longer a stain stays in your carpet, the harder it will be to get rid of it.


Walls are often overlooked in property maintenance, but you need to keep them in very good nick as they are the skeleton of your house. Don't worry too much about surface cracks in the plaster or damage to the wallpaper or paint. These can easily be repaired with new decorations. The thing to really look out for it more intrusive damage to the wall.

Widening cracks should be looked at by an expert as quickly as possible. As with most problems, the earlier you deal with it, the easier and cheaper it will be to fix.

Keep an eye out for any rising damp or dry rot. And pay particular attention to the walls in your bathroom. You want to ensure that moisture and condensation each day isn't settling into the walls causing them damage.


Get them cleaned regularly and wipe down any condensation. Paint wooden windows at least every three years to prevent the weather damaging them.


Don't put up with any dripping taps! Make it a part of your property maintenance schedule to check pipes and taps regularly, and again deal with problems as they arise. If you have bought a house with shoddy plumbing, consider getting it replaced before it bursts and damages your home.


You can do basic maintenance yourself such as replacing plugs. Remember to switch off the supply where needed. For anything else, including replacing broken switches, consider getting someone in. It is property law that any electrical installations or major work must now be done by a qualified electrician.
About the Author
More information about property maintenance can be found at the Property Today website.
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