5 Top Home Maintenance Items to Tackle During Spring

Spring is officially here and that means it’s time for sprucing up the old house.

Apr 26, 2014 at 12:46PM

Depending on where you live, you might be convinced that Mother Nature is playing a cruel joke on you. But wherever you live, spring is officially here and that means it's time for sprucing up the old house. According to Trulia, summer is the hottest season for real estate so if you're thinking of listing soon, spring is your last chance to make last minute home improvements. If you missed out on winter to do your home repairs, here are a few home maintenance items to tackle as spring puts the spring back in your step.

Check those gutters. The weight of snow, falling branches, and simply cold temperatures can wreak havoc with your home's gutters. Grab a ladder (and a buddy) and give your gutters the once-over. Check for blockages caused by debris and leaves, make sure seams are firmly held together, and clear the drainage ways as you prep for spring rains.

Clear that chimney. Do you have a home with a chimney? If you live in the Midwest and Midwest, it's highly likely you do. While the singing chimney sweep from Mary Poppins might not be what you're looking for, every home needs one this time of year. Have a professional come out and inspect your chimney, especially following all of the use you've given it this past winter. They'll check the mortar, flue, and ensure you're good to go before the rains make you wish you'd called sooner. If you're not quite done with use this winter, check out these tips for eco-friendly chimney use.

Inspect outside water connections. Sometimes those hoses don't make it inside during the winter. Now's a good time to check your hoses for rips, tears, and breaks, as well as check the spigots coming out of the house for any cold-related damage. This article will take you through de-winterizing your home, complete with visuals. Remember – thawing still-frozen pipes is a delicate process and to avoid damage, pipes are best thawed slowly. We'd all like Mother Nature to step it up a bit, but this is one place where slow and steady wins the race (and saves your wallet).

Tune-up your cooling system. Before the heat of late spring and summer set in, have a professional come give both your central and window air conditioning units a look-see. While you're waiting for them to arrive to make sure the winter didn't do a number on your system, go ahead and replace your air filters. And if you're in a home where there's no central cooling, check out this new window AC unit from GE/Quirky called the Aros. It's controlled from an app on your phone and, in addition to the sleek and modern design, claims to save you energy compared to other units of the same power. Might be worth a look.

Review your roof. The most expensive (and most unwelcomed) damage a home can endure is the damage we can't see. That's why inspecting your roof each spring is a must. Houselogic has an extensive checklist for seasonal roof inspections, designed to keep you ahead of costly repairs and keep small problems from becoming big ones. The roof over your head has been good to you. Why not be good to it in return by giving it a little post-winter TLC?

This article 5 Top Home Maintenance Items To Tackle During Spring originally appeared on Trulia.com.

Your cable company is scared, but you can get rich
You know cable's going away. But do you know how to profit? There's $2.2 trillion out there to be had. Currently, cable grabs a big piece of it. That won't last. And when cable falters, three companies are poised to benefit. Click here for their names. Hint: They're not Netflix, Google, and Apple. 


Erika Napoletano is a snarky author, columnist, speaker, and branding strategist, hailed by Forbes as a "spinless spin doctor" for her BS-free perspectives on business, marketing, branding, and life in general. She's a twice-published author, including The Power of Unpopular (Wiley 2012), a columnist for both Entrepreneur Magazine and American Express OPEN Forum, an acclaimed speaker from TEDx Boulder 2012, and speaks at conferences across the U.S. on the inherent power of truth in business... or as she refers to it, the power of unpopularity.

Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

©1995-2014 The Motley Fool. All rights reserved. | Privacy/Legal Information