Archives for Home Maintenance

Housing Trends We are Seeing in the Canadian Real Estate Market

The Canadian housing market is already in the news, thanks to the recent collaboration of Vancouver residents to form the #DontHave1Million campaign that went viral. This Twitter campaign was in response to the recent reports that the average home in Vancouver will set you back $1.27 million, which is more than double the average price of a home throughout the rest of the Canadian market. And, at the rate things are going, this trend shows no sign of slowing down.  With this in mind, let’s see the other nine trends in the Canadian housing market to keep in mind in
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8 Tips to help Prevent Break-ins Without Breaking the Bank

Home Owners:  Tips to Prevent Break-ins A recently published story by CBC June 28th, 2016 warned Ottawa residents that the number of residential break-ins has almost doubled in the first half of 2016 as compared to the first half of 2015. While Ottawa is considered a safe city, it’s always a good idea to be vigilant about home security.   Here are a few quick tips that won’t break the bank.   • Get to know your neighbours. Areas with a tight knit community tend to have a much lower number of break-ins.  Suddenly that nosy neighbour might be good thing!  
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Time To Get Out The Spring Maintenance Checklist

  In Ottawa, there are two sights that remind homeowners it’s time for spring maintenance: bikes on the road and geese in the sky. With the recent double-digit temperatures, it seems spring has won its annual wrestling match with winter. And, as spring fever sets in, you may want to store your parka and get at those spring maintenance chores. A great place to start is making sure the melting snow and runoff flows freely off your roof and away from your home instead of seeping in or collecting at the foundation. Improper drainage can cause problems like foundation flooding,
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Why Homeowners Should Beware of Icicles

  Ottawa’s freeze-thaw weather patterns often create sparkling icicles that look magical. But, they actually identify a dangerous — and potentially costly — hazard, an ice dam. Imagine coming home from work to find water streaming down your interior walls and soaking into the hardwood of your foyer. What would you do?   What Is An Ice Dam   After frantically tracing the flow, you would find that a pool of water had formed behind a thick ridge of ice in the gutters – hence the term ice dam. Snow on the roof had been melted by heat loss, causing
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How to Reduce Your Energy Bill with No Cost or Sacrifice

  This excellent post from Adam Dachis on lifehacker.com tells how to lower your electricity bill easily, at no cost, by using your appliances more efficiently.  For example, promoting optimal air flow will lower energy costs by reducing the demand on your cooling/heating system.  Opening all vents in the house and replacing filters on a monthly basis will support ideal air flow, while standing or ceiling fans can be positioned to push hot air up and out (summer) or down to trap it in the room (winter).   Dachis also provides useful tips for laundry machines (reduce heat whenever possible
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Why Cleaning Window Screens Should Be Part of Your Winter Strategy

  Should removing and cleaning the window screens be part of your winter maintenance routine? According to this houzz.com post, there are several benefits to be gained. Simply put, dirty mesh blocks light, heat and the view. For example, you get 30 to 40 percent more light coming in without screens on the windows.  More sunshine means you need less artificial light and can save on energy costs.   In addition, removing the screens increases the solar energy getting through to the windows. Improved solar heat gain reduces the need for mechanical heating saving on heating bills. Also, during a storm, snow
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Your Complete Guide to Pest-Proofing This Fall

  To prevent an onslaught of pests from occupying your house as the weather cools, simply  follow the National Pest Management Association guidance presented in this post from Bob Villa. Seal cracks in the exterior envelope, especially where utility pipes enter, with silicone caulking.  Fill larger gaps inside your home with steel wool. Pests avoid the roughness of the steel fibers and rodents cannot gnaw through it. Repair ripped window screens, door sweeps and loose mortar in the basement foundation, screen dryer vents and chimneys and replace weather stripping to seal these ideal entry points. If you suspect an infestation,
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