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Priority Maintenance for Home Buyers

There are so many home maintenance and repair items that are important; it can be confusing trying to establish which are the most critical. To simplify things, we have compiled a short list of our favorites. These are by no means all-inclusive, nor do they replace any of the information in a home inspection report. They should, however, help you get started on the right foot. Remember, any items marked as priority or safety issues on your home inspection report need immediate attention.


1. Cut back tree branches that are on or near the Roof, near or touching the house wall or near Air Conditioning system.

2. Clean gutters annually.

3. Clean tracks on horizontal sliding windows and ensure drain holes in tracks are not plugged.

4. Test GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter), Smoke detectors and Carbon Monoxide detectors monthly by using the test buttons on the devices.

5. Have Furnace or Boiler serviced annually.

6. Check Furnace filters as well as Humidifier and Electronic Air Cleaners monthly.

7. Check caulking around Bathtub and Shower on an ongoing basis and improve if necessary.

8. Shut off outdoor water faucets in the Fall if you are in a cold zone.

9. Check Garage door sensors monthly to ensure the door reverses. Do by blocking sensor when door is coming down.

10.Check Attic for any evidence of leaks or condensation and make sure vents are not obstructed. Do at least twice a year.



1. Change locks when you move into home.

2. Install Smoke detectors and Carbon Monoxide detectors on each floor of home. Smoke detectors should be placed up high and CO detectors placed down low. Install to manufacturer’s recommendations.

3. Electrical improvements recommended in the Home Inspection report are to be attended to immediately. Label Electrical panel and circuits.

4.Correct trip hazards such as uneven sidewalk blocks or walkways.

5. Install inside or outside stair hand rails and deck railing if not present.

6. Have Chimney inspected before using wood fireplace.

7. Locate and tag shut-offs for Heating, Electrical and Plumbing and inside water shut off valves.

8. If there is a Septic system have the system inspected and pumped out.


 From the Carson Dunlop Home Inspection Program

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