Follow these home maintenance tips to keep your home like-new for years to come

Your home is the center of your life. It’s where you spend time with your friends and family, it’s probably your largest investment, and it’s a place where you can feel comfortable and relax. Taking care of your home is important, but home maintenance can often feel overwhelming. There’s just so much to do in so little time.

In this article, we’ll skip the extended checklist and instead zero in on three core guiding principles: invest in your home, hire the right people, and take care of it before it breaks. Follow these three rules of homeownership, and you’ll be set.

You get what you pay for so invest in your home

Homeownership can be expensive. It’s not just the mortgage, either. Insurance, taxes, and home upkeep can all put a dent in your monthly budget. When it comes to home upkeep, it’s often tempting to try to find ways to minimize costs. However, buying the right things and making the right upgrades are a crucial part of keeping your home like-new. There are some places where you don’t want your only decision-making metric to be, “What costs the least?” For example, an inexpensive air conditioner may cost less money upfront, but you could pay much more later in repair and energy costs. Cheap cabinets, on the other hand, may not be built to last, meaning you’ll need to replace them far sooner than you’d expect.

If there’s one place to never sacrifice quality for price, it’s when you’re hiring people to work in your home. High-quality home professionals come at a price, but their expertise and professionalism are worth it and then some. There are just too many horror stories about homeowners who—in the interest of shaving just a little bit off their project cost—hire an inexperienced or unlicensed person to work on their home. The results range from disappointing such as tile being installed incorrectly to disastrous electrical fires.

Leave your plumbing and electrical to the experts

Empowered and emboldened by YouTube and a wide variety of blogs, today’s homeowners are savvier and DIY-capable than many were in the past, when such knowledge was harder to seek out. From building their own furniture to resurfacing cabinets and installing laminate flooring, homeowners are opting to do more and more projects themselves. However, there are two areas of your home that you should not handle yourself: plumbing and electrical.

In the hands of a non-expert, both can be extremely risky projects. After all, either flooding your home or setting it on fire are worst-case scenarios for any homeowner. You’ll want to partner with a licensed contractor with the experience and equipment to properly fix your home’s problems, and instead save your DIY craving for those cool nightstands you were thinking about building.

A little proactive maintenance can go a long way

Generally speaking, sitting around and waiting for things to break is going to be far more expensive and stressful than putting in the time to keep things running right. Take your air conditioner and furnace, for example. A breakdown in the middle of summer or the coldest night of winter is a major problem. However, many AC and heating repairs could have been avoided by scheduling seasonal maintenance from a local HVAC technician. HVAC tune-ups also have other benefits such as boosting efficiency and lower your energy bills. Tune-ups can extend the lifespan of your system. They can even keep your manufacturer’s warranty intact, saving you money on any repairs you need down the road.

Throughout your home, take note of appliances and systems that would benefit from having an expert inspect them on an annual basis. After all, a little maintenance today can help prevent big problems tomorrow.

Enjoy your home and your life

It’s easy for many homeowners—especially relatively new, first-time homebuyers—to get caught up in checking every box on the home maintenance checklist. That kind of proactive thinking is great, but don’t lose sight of the reason you bought the home in the first place: this is a place for you to enjoy life and the company of your friends and family.

If you find yourself stressed by the upkeep of your home, take a deep breath and remember that homeownership isn’t about making sure every weed is pulled in the backyard. It’s about that bigger life journey. You’ve got this handled.

Victoria Schmidt is the communications specialist at Southern Air Heating and Cooling South Louisiana, the go-to HVAC contractor in South Louisiana. At Southern Air, we believe in backing our work with our Ironclad Guarantees. These guarantees ensure that our customers are completely satisfied with our products and services, and they’re peace of mind.