When it comes to your home, you want the best. Sometimes your budget doesn’t allow for that, so you end up having to make some difficult decisions. More expensive doesn’t always mean better, but cheap is almost always cheap. If you consider your home a lifetime investment, and show the care it deserves, you’ll be healthier and happier in your home for much longer.
Thanks to acoya that provided us with 5 ways to increase the longevity of your home:
Decades ago, people bought a refrigerator expecting to own it for decades. That really isn’t the case now. Appliances don’t really last as long as they used to. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t make your money stretch. Avoid buying the cheapest appliances, whenever you can. Save more money and buy something that is made out of more durable components. For example, you might buy a dishwasher with stainless steel sides instead of plastic.
And once you’ve gotten the appliances, take good care of them. Keep up on the regular required maintenance of all appliances in your home, and also make sure to give each of their interiors a cleaning at least once every 6 months. This will not only help them to operate at optimal performance, but it will also help to increase their longevity.
What works for appliances also works for other equipment in your home. You don’t have to break the bank to have functioning fixtures. Do your homework when it’s time to replace your HVAC or plumbing. You need devices that will serve the size of your home and your family appropriately. Opt for energy-efficient models whenever possible. This will help you to save money on your energy costs (which you can in turn use to purchase other more efficient equipment for your home!) It also doesn’t hurt that they usually qualify for tax breaks.
Finally, put in the work to maintain all your systems. If you don’t know how to do it, then schedule a professional to perform routine service at least once or twice a year. This will improve the use of your equipment, and lengthen its lifespan.
If you are buying a new home, the cost of decorating and furnishing can bury you. But whatever you do, don’t skimp on quality. For example, cheap carpet can be extremely inexpensive. But it is a pain to clean and maintain. If you bought cheap pads to go underneath, the floor won’t be as cushy. If the pile of the carpet is not very tightly woven, it will come up easily, even when you vacuum it. Instead, go for something that will last a lot longer.
If you really want to have the longest-lasting option in your home when it comes to flooring, you will want to go with hardwood flooring. Timber flooring is the best long-term investment when it comes to flooring, since it can last for generations.
Your furnishings do not need to look like a Crate & Barrel catalog to be functional and long-lasting. But you should shop around and require quality. Take the time to make sure you are getting exactly what you want. For example, the stuffing in couches will usually flatten over time. If the cushions are very soft when you first buy them, you may end up wanting to replace it after only a few years. When buying a bed, look for solid wood over pressed board, because it will hold up longer. Look for quality over cost when searching for furniture to help get the most life out of your pieces as possible.
If you don’t have a lot of money to spend on these costly pieces, don’t immediately think that means you have to shop at a store that sells cheap quality furniture. Instead, look for discounts on high quality pieces. Find out if your favorite furniture store has an outlet store (most of them do). These outlets sell the same high quality pieces you are looking for, but they will either maybe have a small scratch or dent in them (which makes them unsellable in the normal store), or they are last year’s model. Also make sure to take advantage of the many sales that furniture stores have throughout the year.
All the components of your home may be in great condition. But if the structure of the house is falling apart, you’re going to have problems. Of course when you are purchasing a new home make sure to have all of the recommended tests and reports done on your home to make sure it is in good condition. On top of that, Regular maintenance is your best protection against structural failure, and a lot of it is easy to do. Twice a year, inspect:
- roof, gutters and downspouts
- exterior caulking
- windows and doors
- all outdoor faucets
This minor investment of your time will help keep your home more comfortable year-round.
These days, people often expect to buy a home and then sell it within a few years. But given the difficulty of the housing market, this isn’t generally a wise plan. If you buy a home, you should expect to live in it for the long haul. If you prepare carefully, it will be a smart investment.
About the Author
Nicole is a blogger for the home improvement industry, including everything from ways to increase the longevity of your home to the best flooring options. In her opinion, Lifewood Flooring offers the best hardwood flooring she could find.