What homeowner doesn’t want their household to be safe, especially in the home? After all it is the place they should feel the safest. Unfortunately, many injuries are caused by accidents within the home. It is a good idea, then, to do all we can to keep our homes well maintained so as to prevent as many accidents as possible. One area that should be taken care of is the staircase. Stairs can be particularly dangerous for households with young children, the elderly or even handicapped residents. Here are a few ideas to ensure the staircase is well maintained:
Simple checks like these, should not take long, but they will go a long way to ensure the safety of you and your household.
If you have moved into a new construction home within the last year, then this month’s video will be something you will want to watch.
The majority of builders provide a 1-year warranty with their new homes. This means that should any issues arise due to the construction of the home, you will be covered. But, what if there are some problems you are not aware of because they are not too apparent? You would, no doubt, want to find out about these things before the warranty expires. This is when an 11-month home inspection comes in.
This brief video will give you a good idea of what an 11-month inspection would involve and what to do if problems are found.
We want you to enjoy the home you live in and not be responsible for any possible construction errors. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or to schedule a home inspection.
Are you about to buy a home need to have a home inspection performed? The home buying process can be a little daunting, especially if you are a first-time buyer. With that in mind, we thought we would answer a couple of basic questions many people ask regarding the home inspection.
Is it a good idea to be present for the home inspection?
Yes, being around for the home inspection is a good choice. This is because as you go through the property with the inspector, you will be educated about the home you are looking to buy. You will then have a better understanding as to how the house functions, you will also learn the locations of areas like the heating and plumbing systems. Your home inspector can also show you any problems or defects with the property. It is much better to see something with your own eyes than to just read it from a report.
How long does a home inspection take to complete?
The amount of time it can take depends on a range of factors. Obviously, the size of the home will make a difference as well as its location and whether additional buildings on the property etc. will need inspecting. But, in general you should expect the home inspection to take around three hours. Be a little wary of anyone who takes significantly less time than this to perform the inspection, it might not be as thorough as it needs to be.
A good home inspector will be happy to answer any of your questions regarding the home inspection and will be happy for you to be there while the inspection is being performed. This is your new home, so make sure you get the best. Please don’t hesitate to contact us to schedule your comprehensive home inspection.
One of the most likely areas in a home to experience damp or flooding is the basement. The positioning of it below grade makes it prone to a number of damp related problems such as mold, poor air quality and even rotting foundations. While there are different causes for these issues, one way a basement becomes damp is when water pools around the foundation of the home. How can this be prevented?
Pooling often happens because of incorrectly installed, or leaking gutters and downspouts. It’s good to do a check of these to make sure they are properly installed and that gutters are clear and not blocked up. Downspouts need to be positioned to drain away from the house in order to prevent pooling, 10 feet away is best. In this way water is diverted away from the foundation.
Inadequate or uneven grade (or slope) can be another cause of water pooling around the foundation. To remedy this problem, you might have to even out some of the uneven areas.
Water can very often be a problem if your home is situated at the base of a hill or incline. One way to divert water away from the house is by creating small ditches known as swales. Ideally swales should be situated about 10 to 15 feet away from the house so as to prevent water runoff from reaching the buildings foundation.
There are various options for treating water damage in a basement but doing whatever we can to prevent it is the best option.
We know that DIY does not come naturally to everyone, and frankly, there are some jobs that need to be left to the professionals. But whether you enjoy DIY or not, it is still beneficial to have at least some tools in the home. Even simple jobs in the home can turn into big jobs if you do not have the right tools. Here are a few examples of handy tools to own:
As we’ve mentioned, even small tasks require the right tools. Take putting up a shelf or picture hanging for example, this usually involves the need to put a nail in the wall, measure where you want it to go and making sure its perfectly straight. For this you will at least need a hammer, tape measure and a level to ensure the job is done right.
Blocked sinks and toilets are a very common to have in a home. While this may require a skilled plumber to fix the problem, in many cases, for a temporary fix or if the blockage is small, the issue can be resolved by the home owner. In this instance, the tool to have is a plunger.
What are some other handy tools to have in your home tool kit?
Think of safety first when it comes to DIY jobs. Safety gloves, breathing masks and goggles are important.
Duct tape. This is a great tool as it can be used for temporary repairs due to its excellent adhesion and water resistance.
A flash light is an essential tool for any kit.
A screw driver set, have this in various sizes and make sure this includes both flat head and Philips head screw drivers.
A wrench set
Although there are many tools that you will find very handy to have in your home kit, this small list will give you a good start.
Owning an apartment building or multi family building can be a great investment. Have you recently purchased or are about to purchase one?
Perhaps you’re wondering how to go about getting it inspected. We are here to help you when it comes to making sure you have a thorough building inspection. We not only want to help you as the owner, but also take into consideration the needs of your tenants.
In this brief video, you will see why we are the best choice when it comes to inspecting your newly acquired multi family building. Please call or contact us for more advice and information.
Will next year be the year you consider moving? Will this be the first time you have put a home on the market? If this is the case, you may be wondering how to go about starting the seemingly huge process of buying and selling a home.
Perhaps you’ve done a little research on the matter and are thinking about ways you can cut down on some of the costs. Maybe you’re wondering if a pre-listing home inspection is really that necessary, or whether this is a step you can skip.
We have a brief video this month to guide you through the first steps you should take when you need to put your home on the market. It will also help you to see why a pre-listing home inspection is such an important thing to have done.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to advise you.
Are you searching for a new apartment or perhaps looking for a condo to buy?
When you find an apartment or condo you are happy with and it’s in a desirable area, it's only natural to start thinking of where your furniture will go, and how you will arrange your stuff to make it your own. But before settling in, you will want to look at some common pitfalls that could come with a shared residential building. This is especially true if you are paying a security deposit or you are responsible for maintenance and repair costs that affect your home. There may be a specific space you will be financially responsible for, but maybe the landlord promises complete responsibility. In a best-case scenario, a problem with the house will cause inconvenience and annoyance.
If you are in the renters market, an inspection of a potential apartment could be worth your while. Besides the foundation and structure of the building, we can look at the boiler and the condition of the roof. These two things may be the most imminent problems or costs that could come if they aren’t in good condition.
Another important step to take is to know if someone has lived there before, what damage they may have caused, and to document it.
Living in a shared residential building may be a good option for you, and whether you are renting or buying a space we can look for any potential problems.
In our last article we discussed some of the preliminary steps you can take to start eliminating tobacco smoke in your new home. It may be necessary, however, to think of a more permanent way of removing something that is so stubborn. Here are some more useful suggestions on how best to get rid of it.
If you are considering keeping the existing light bulbs in the home, clean them thoroughly. The oily residue from nicotine could be covering them. When the light is switched on, the odor could be diffusing into the air. An alternative, could be replacing the light bulbs with new ones.
Cleaners that contain ammonia are good to use for cleaning hard surfaces. When cleaning surfaces like woodwork though, its best not to use such an acidic cleaner.
Unfortunately, it will be pretty much impossible to get rid of tobacco odor from carpeting. This will need to be removed and replaced. Before replacing the carpet, make sure the flooring underneath is cleaned.
If the home has blinds, remove them and soak in a bathtub. Scrub them thoroughly and let hang to dry. If there are any curtains, you may need to have these cleaned professionally.
Painting the walls can be a good idea as it traps the odor, but beware with this as some tobacco odor could still seep through.
Clean or replace any filters that are in the home.
Specialty 'smoker candles' are available, which can neutralize tobacco odor.
We hope that with these suggestions, your home will be odor free in no time.
So you have just purchased your dream home. Everything is exactly what you want except that the previous owners were smokers. Everything seems to be saturated with the odor of tobacco. You may be wondering if there is anything you can do about it and if so how easy is it to remove?
Tobacco smoke particles are so tiny that they can penetrate almost any area of the house. For example, even if you are living in an apartment that has never had a smoker living there, the smoke from surrounding neighbors can penetrate through to your home.
Lets look at some easy things you can do to start with.
The first thing you will want to do after purchasing your home is try to eliminate the odor as best as you can. There are some known odor absorbents and neutralizers.
Citrus, you can place citrus peel around the home for a few days.
Charcoal and vinegar are a good option. You can place either of them in a bowl and leave in affected rooms.
Pour some coffee grounds into filters and place them in rooms.
Baking soda is also a good odor neutralizer, but be careful with this near fabrics etc.
Try to ventilate the home by opening windows and doors as much as you can, as this is one of the most effective ways to get rid of bad odor.
This is just some preliminary things to get you started with tobacco smoke odor. Next time we will address more detailed ways to permanently get rid of this smell.
George Adair, Certified Professional Home Inspector
I provide a wide range of home inspection and home inspection related services in the following areas of southern Manitoba: Winnipeg, Selkirk , Lockport,Steinbach,
Stony Mountain, Elie, Rosser, Lorette Sanford, East St. Paul, West St. Paul, Oak Bank,
Oak Bluff, Landmark,
St. Anne, Saint Andrews,
La Salle, Richer, Niverville and Warren.
Our extended area also includes: Lac Du Bonnet, Beausejour, Libeau, Gimli, Pinawa, Falcon Beach, Winnipeg Beach, Grand Marais, Saint Laurent, and Pine Falls