Your home research duties as a home owner does not stop the moment you ink an agreement with the realtor for the purchase of your new home. According to residential builder and House Logic contributor John Riha, there’s a steep learning curve when it comes to homeownership– but there are just some mistakes that you need to know about from the start, and avoid like the plague. Found below are just some of them:
- Not looking for the main water shutoff valve
Riha lists this first on its list of top mistakes most new home owners commit. Know the water command center of your house: the main water shutoff valve. Broken plumbing has the potential to flood the insides of your home, and before you know it, everything you invested has literally and figuratively gone down the drain.
As they say, prevention is always better than the cure. If you know where to find the shutoff valve quick, and if household members know where it’s located, then you can stop the water flow immediately in the event of plumbing failures.
Riha recommends calling 811, the country’s dig safely hotline, before you start digging any holes around the house. Just leave it to the 811 to do the ground (pun intended) research for you. According to the 811 official website, when you call 811, your call will be transferred to the local One Call Center where you will speak with an operator about the details of your digging activities (i.e. type of digging work and digging site). The company will then contact the local utilities companies concerned, which in turn will send a representative to mark digging spots around your home that you need to avoid.
- Not Checking the Slope of your Home’s Foundation
Water damage is the top reason for foundational deterioration. A rule of thumb is to have the foundation of your home to slope away between 6 inches and 10 feet from the structure. This will make sure that the soil around your foundation drains properly from rain and other forms of moisture. Otherwise, you could risk prematurely destroying the foundation of your house just years after moving into your new home. The Environmental Protection Agency offers tips on how to ensure foundational drainage and moisture control at foundations, basements and crawl spaces.