Take a look around your home today. Chances are good there are some basic upkeep tasks you could stand to get done – or maybe there’s a more serious problem, like loose shingles on your roof that are causing leakage. Or perhaps you’re planning to sell the home at some point in the near future and it’s repainting, renovations and additions you’ve got in mind.

All of these are equally important. Whether you want to make your home look better for your benefit or to attract the eyes of a buyer, it isn’t always the easiest responsibility to shoulder, especially if you consider yourself a do-it-yourselves kind of individual and plan to handle much of the work on your own. Naturally, you should look for help wherever you can get it, from episodes of HGTV to consultations with your home inspector or an appropriate service person.

Step One

Make Notes – Make Your Own Home Inspection Report

Have you ignored basic home maintenance, replacement of old components or updating appliances that are at the end of their useful life? This is an expensive strategy, as ignoring developing major, precipitous problems can end up costing thousands to repair. With this in mind, consider performing your own do-it-yourself inspections from time to time. Just review these strategies before you start digging around in your crawl space.

Get prepared

To perform a proper inspection, you’re going to need some gear. Gather a pair of gloves, a flashlight and flathead and Phillips-head screwdrivers for probing, Popular Mechanics advised. If you’re planning to inspect an area you believe to be structurally unsound, get yourself some head protection as well.

Get Going

Once you’ve assembled your equipment, formulate an inspection plan. Evaluate the exterior and interior of your home, focusing on essential architectural features such as the foundation and roof. Additionally, be sure to collect important information about your property, the American Home Inspectors Directory suggested. You need details, such as its date of construction, to contextualize what you ultimately find.

Be your own home inspector. Look carefully at all aspects of your home, both inside and the exterior. Look and …SEE!!!

Be organized and make a logical progression around the outside of your house first. Many home inspectors like to start outside. Problems on the outside often are clues to hidden problems inside, such as water infiltration leading to mold behind inside walls. Look at the grading to find any “reverse grades”, soil levels around the first 5-8 feet around your house that permit water to flow toward the exterior walls. Look at exterior wall components, doors and windows, roof and gutter/downspouts.
Next walk around the inside of your home, working from the lowest level to the attic, if the house has an attic. Look at the ages of major equipment, heating, cooling, water heating, and kitchen appliances. Are any of these at the end of their useful lives?

Next think about what elements of your house aggravate you, but that you have been too lazy to fix. Such conditions could be a very drafty window, failed weatherstripping around exterior doors, fogged double insulated glass window panes, a water stain that you have ignored or ratty looking carpets. These cosmetic issues can be a detriment to a quick and successful sale down the road.

Call a Professional

If you uncover something outwardly fishy during your inspection, call a professional home inspector for advice or an appropriate contractor, such as an electrician, plumber or roofer. These individuals can look over the areas of concern and complete more in-depth tasks, such as reviewing a complicated electrical problem or an oldc age water heater.