When site built planters are used, ensure the home is protected and proper drainage is present to prevent damages caused by water intrusion of building materials. Protecting your investment and reducing the cost of ownership starts with identifying defects, correcting them and developing a maintenance plan for your home.
• Check any wood trim surrounding windows, doors, railings, or decks for rot. This can easily be done by using a screwdriver to probe the material. You'll want to repair any trouble areas before the spring rains begin.
• Concrete slabs should be inspected for signs of movement or cracks. All exterior concrete should drain away from the home's foundation. Fill cracks with a concrete crack filler. When weather permits, power-wash and then seal the concrete to increase longevity.
• Check outside hose faucets for freeze damage. Turn the water on and place your thumb or finger over the opening. If you can stop the flow of water, it is likely the pipe inside the home is damaged and will need to be replaced. While you're at it, check the garden hose for dry rot.
• Loose or leaky gutters can lead to drainage issues that can allow water into your basement or crawl space. Downspouts should be clear of debris and drain away from the foundation.
• The grade around your home should be sloped away from the foundation to prevent water from pooling up and entering the home. Use compact soil to increase the grade so that water flows away from the foundation.
Your inspector is a great resource for property owners wanting to develop long term maintenance plans to protect investments and keep unwanted costs away.