Ants, Beetles, and Termites, Oh My- How to Rid Your House of These Tiny Trespassers

Exterminator
Exterminator

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

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What You Can Do When Jack Frost Comes and Freezes Your Pipes

frozen-pipe
frozen-pipe

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.

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How to Avoid Buying a Money Pit: What to Look for When Buying an Old House

Money-Pit
Money-Pit

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!

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Is Radon Seeping into Your Home? The Silent Killer You Need to Know About.

gas-mask
gas-mask

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.

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Stop the Mold Monster In Its Tracks: How to Keep Your Vacation Home Mold Free During the Off Season

Boat-House
Boat-House

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.

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The Consultant in Your Corner: What is Required to Become a 203k Consultant and Why You Need One!

Fifteen years ago I built a house in Gilmanton, NH.  We were young and had a limited budget, so we decided to be the general contractors and often the construction workers as well.  We cleared the land, mapped out the foundation, hired all of the contractors, filled out all of the paperwork and the list goes on.  We used word of mouth and our own limited vetting skills to hire contractors, plumbers, electricians, and carpenters.  I am sad to report that more than one of the “professionals” that we hired did not complete their work, didn’t show up on the days they were scheduled and requested payments that far exceeded their initial bids.  Our lack of experience and knowledge cost us lots of time and money!  In hindsight, I would definitely hire a general contractor, I wish I had, had someone to guide me through the complex process.  

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How Can You Buy That Diamond in the Rough Property and Make it Your Palace?

Residential-home

One of the best parts about New England are all the quaint and historic properties that pepper its small towns and cities alike. As you drive along any New England highway or dirt covered back road you are bound to see several beautiful cape cod style houses, old Victorians, or classic salt boxes. Who hasn’t wondered what it might be like to live in one of these gems?

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Carbon Monoxide: Colorless, Odorless, Tasteless and Deadly. Why You Need a Carbon Monoxide Detector in Your Home

Family-Safe-From-Carbon-Monoxide

Family-Safe-From-Carbon-Monoxide

Many people have never heard of or considered having a carbon monoxide detector installed in their home.  I was one of these people until I was in the process of becoming a foster/adoptive parent and having a carbon monoxide detector in each room in my house was required.   I didn’t understand why this was necessary at the time, but I knew that I wanted to make my house as safe as it could be for my future children. So, I hired a professional to install a detector in each bedroom and main living area in my home.  Although, I knew that I could install them myself, I wanted to make sure that it was done correctly.  You might ask why is this important or even what is carbon monoxide and how does it get into my home?

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Icicles Can be a Sign of Danger! Ice Damming can Lead to Serious Damage!

Icicles
Icicles

As a child growing up in New Hampshire one of my favorite parts of winter was the beautiful icicles that would form on the gutters of my house. I was convinced that Jack Frost had left them just for me. Not only did I love the way they sparkled in the sun, but I would wait with great anticipation for them to fall off the roof so that I could have an icy treat. Little did I know then that they could be a sign of trouble to come. Not only could the larger ones fall and hurt someone, but they could be a precursor to ice damming on the roof. As a child you don’t think of all the dangers and damage that could be caused by those lovely prisms of ice, but as an adult and a home owner they are something to be feared.

What is an Ice Dam?

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What Exactly Is a Beverly Jog?

As home inspectors, we are often confronted with architectural peculiarities on homes. Often times we are left wondering what we are looking at.

So today we came across a feature on a house in Francestown, New Hampshire known as “Beverly Jog.” I would describe the portion of the home as simply an addition to the original home with a shed roof. But upon researching the house, which is listed on the historic registry, I came to discover that the structure has a name.

A “Beverly Jog” as it is known, is pretty much as I described it. It’s an addition to a home. Usually for the purpose of providing a new interior staircase to an upper level floor. Often times, the structure is designed to have a similar roof and outer appearance to the rest of the home. But it undoubtedly juts out from the home, hence being called a “jog.”

Note that if the house has a Gambrel roof, it is sometimes referred to as a “jut-by.” Continue reading “What Exactly Is a Beverly Jog?”