Your home is one of the most sacred and comforting places that you spend time. How comfortable would you be if you knew that there were hundreds or thousands of tiny little terrorists silently invading your home? Wouldn’t you want to know where they are and how to get rid of them? What if these trespassers were not only inhabiting your home, but also destroying it from the studs out? Would this make you want to take immediate action to defend your castle? Of course, it would. Sadly, many of us don’t know that we have these tiny, terrible visitors until it is too late and they have created thousands of dollars’ worth of damage. There are some simple ways that you can prevent these interlopers from destroying your domicile. Following the information here can help you on your way to a pest free environment!What Wood Destroying Organisms (WDOs) Are and Why You Need to Be Weary of Them Wood destroying organisms are those nasty creepy crawlies that are silently eating away at your home. This list includes subterranean termites, dry wood termites, damp wood termites, powder post beetles, carpenter ants, and carpenter bees. Each of these bugs have their own unique way of slowly destroying your home, plank by plank:Facts About WDOs
At the ripe age of 26 and with a great level of naivete and hubris I embarked on the process of building a home. My then husband and I decided that we would be perfectly capable of being our own general contractor. This I believe now is a clear sign of the hubris of youth! We thought that because we had grown up in the area where we were building and knew a lot of people that we would be able to easily find subcontractors to work on our home build. This assumption turned out to be our downfall and a true life lesson. We ended up hiring friends of the family to paint, the father of one of my high school friend’s father as a finish carpenter and a plumber that came highly recommended by our neighbors. In a perfect world this would have all added up to major savings and the security of knowing the people you were working with. However, this is not a perfect world and in the end we often couldn’t get a hold of my high school friend’s father and after charging us for a ridiculous amount of copper piping the plumber that came so highly recommended disappeared and with him all of the pipe.
There is no better sight after a long New England winter than the first blade of grass growing up out of the last patches of snow in your yard. We welcome the littlest signs of spring, but with the spring can come a great deal of moisture. You definitely want to make sure that your attic is moisture free come April showers, because any wetness in your attic can cause a lot of stress and costly repairs throughout your house. There are many possible reasons why your attic may have moisture and many of them may be hidden. Even if your ceiling isn’t leaking and you see no water seeping into your home from above, don’t be fooled into thinking that there are no issues in your attic. Make sure to check for all possible culprits in your attic that could cause damage now or down the road. You always want to protect yourself from costly repairs and major damage.
There is no worse feeling than stepping down into your basement and hearing, “swish, swish” under your feet. With New England’s ever quickly changing seasons, mountains or snow melt and furious April showers, it is absolutely essential to have a sump pump in your basement. No one wants to have to deal with the costly repairs and headaches of cleaning up a wet basement. Although there are some houses that will never experience moisture problems, they are the lucky few and far between. So, whether you have lived in your house for 20 years or are just buying a house there are a few things that you should look for that are signs that you need a sump pump:Signs That You Need a Sump Pump
I know that there is nothing more exciting than seeing the first iris or daffodil poke through the snow or the first patch of green grass after a long winter covered in snow. The muck and the mud that follow are even welcome because they mean an end to the freezing temperatures, snow shovels and winter winds. Spring is one of the most magical times of year, especially in New England after the long winter’s hibernation. The air seems cleaner, the breeze gentle, the birds come back and sing their melodious song, the grass begins to grow and flowers bloom. In the midst of all of this wonder there is also a lot of work to be done.
There are some misconceptions about frozen pipes. The leading misconception is that pipes only freeze in cold climates. In fact, pipes are more likely to freeze in warm climates where houses do not have adequate insulation to protect the pipes. I found this out the hard way.
One of New England’s greatest assets is its quaint small towns and the beautiful antique and historical homes in these towns. I grew up in a small New Hampshire town, whose main street was littered with homes that dated back to the 1800’s. The homes ranged from Victorian mansions to saltbox and cape style farm houses, each with its own unique architecture and charm. In fact, the house that I grew up in was a quaint little white farmhouse that was built in the 1800’s, well at least the original part of the house. Although, this house was full of charm it was also full of issues!
I have bought and sold several houses in my lifetime, in several states and I never once remember having a radon test when I moved in or moved out. You may be in the same situation. Maybe you have never even heard of this radon and are wondering what the big deal is. Why would you need to worry about this? Quite simply, radon exposure can kill you and you may never know you have been exposed until it is too late. Radon exposure causes the second most cases of lung cancer in this country, second only to cigarette smoking. The difference is you may never even know that you have been inhaling small levels of radon for years, unless you take precautions and have your house tested and cleared of this gas.
Growing up in the Lakes Region, in a small town whose population grew from 2,500 people in the winter to more than 40, 000 people in the summer, I had quite a few friends that were “summer people”. Most of these “summer people” had houses on or near the lake and I can distinctively remember the musty odor that would greet you at the door of their houses. Over the summer this odor would fade and be replaced by the smells of suntan lotion and barbecue chicken, but those first few weeks it was very distinct. At the time I had no idea what caused this odor that stung my nose when I visited my friends’ lake houses, but I now realize it was probably mold that had built up over their long absent winter.
Maybe you have just purchased that diamond in the rough, the house with the good bones and beautiful architecture, but the bathroom tile resembles Pepto bismal and your kitchen has army green linoleum that matches the ancient appliances. Or perhaps, you have lived in your home for years and now that abundance of oak in your kitchen has gotten old or the once glorious jet tub ceased to sooth your aching muscles long ago or you plan to sell your house soon, it is probably time to make some changes to your home. There are many things to consider when you approach either of these type of renovations. Perhaps, after careful consideration you may decide you want to renovate both of these spaces.