Top Home Maintenance Items

I received a call from a Realtor that has referred me ( and others) several times recently. He said he had a client that had bought a home a few months ago and was asking him (the Realtor) what maintenance tasks they should be performing on the home on a regular basis. His clients are 1st time home buyers with little to no home maintenance knowledge so even obvious stuff may be appropriate for them. I know there has been other posts on this but I can’t seem to find anything useful using the Search function and I’ve got too much on my plate right now to spend a lot of brain power coming up with topics so I’ll see what you guys think would be appropriate to include for a southern region home owner. The topics I come up with quickly include:

  1. Keep the HVAC filters clean and replaced per the mfg recommendations.
  2. Clean the gutters at least once per year.
  3. Put 1/2 to 1 cup of bleach down the a/c condensate drain line every 4-6 weeks during the cooling season to help prevent algae growth in the line.
  4. Replace SD and CO detector batteries each year.
  5. ???

I’ll also recommend he have the client sign up for my HomeHints eNews letter and will also provide the Realtor with a copy of “Manual for a Happy Home” that he can use or even pass on to his client.

Dr. Keith Swift’s “Manual for a Happy Home”]( may be just what your business needs.

Here’s a good list:


or this …

John…you didn’t read my last sentence of the original post did you? :wink:


Guilty as charged. My apologies.


Thanks Brian…that’s more what I’m looking for. My intention is to provide this Realtor a short list, maybe 12-15 items that he can pass on to his client quickly. That way the not-too-handy homeowner won’t be overwhelmed with the volume of info available in the books that we have available to us. I’m just afraid that a large amount of instructions will get ignored and I’d like to ease the guy into a maintenance schedule. I do like the one Jason referenced and may use that or a subset of it. Chris, the NACHI handbook is pretty much like the Happy Home guide, right?

OK, here’s what I’ve come up with so far. I’d like to add 3-4 more items to get page 2 a little fuller. Again, I don’t want the homeowner to get overwhelmed but I do want to give him some ideas and to call me the next time he needs an inspector. And, I want to help his Realtor. (OK, bash me all you want to on that one).

Maintenance Items Primer.pdf (28.2 KB)

Going on vacation put a couple of oz. vegtable oil in all Traps including drains , Clothes and dish washer so the water does not evaporate Pumps need to be kept wet .
If you are turning the heat down use some windshield antifreeze in all traps.
Roy Cooke

Maybe garage door and/or outside lights?

Irrigation system is always finincky.

Have the heating system serviced once a year
Any flat roofs (rolled roofing or rubber) should be coated with aluminum every 4-5 years
keep bushes and trees trimmed and away from the gutters/house
coat the driveway every couple of years

Excellent…I think that does it, Thanks! I’ll get kudo’s from the Realtor and hopefully his client as well.

Come on Michael, lets see the finished product. :smiley: I am in dire need of some Kudos.

email coming, Mike.


I have a comprehensive seasonal Home Maintenance list on my website at…

OK, here’s the list I sent to the Realtor to pass on to his client. Just remember that it was never intended to be a comprehensive list of maintenance tasks, just a short primer to get the homeowner’s interest piqued. I also tried to make it specific to a southern (central Texas) homeowner’s focus. I sent this via e-mail to the Realtor on Friday and also dropped a hardcopy of it and a “Manual for a Happy Home” off at his office. No response as yet but I’ll give him a call early next week. With the several offers of additional info that I’ve received (see above posts…thanks guys!) I’ll probably expand this into my own more comprehensive list like those examples and have that available in the future.
Maintenance Items Primer.pdf (29.4 KB)

Hi to all,

Michael, I would suggest that you also add to the list checking and repairing caulking around doors, windows, sinks, baths and showers. I have never done an inspection yet that didn’t show deficiencies in these areas.

Oh and I don’t remember if checking the opperation of GFCI’s and AFCI’s is on your list.



Mike sorry I didn’t see this earlier. The January 2007 HomeHints eNews has an article in it about an interactive home maintenance guide called the home wizard, check it out here:

It has a free monthly notification feature which is very cool. I think this right down your alley.

Thanks John, I’ll give the Realtor a heads-up to be watching for it as he already receives HomeHintseNews and I’ll provide him that direct link as well. That looks like a really good service, very impressive!