Communication is key for any healthy relationship, but when was the last time you had a heart-to-heart with your home? It may not be able to talk, but your home can show you what it needs if you know what to look for. Check out these seven telltale signs that your house needs some help. You’ll prevent costly (and potentially dangerous) disasters from occurring!
Large Cracks in Your Foundation
A few hairline cracks here and there are okay – they’re like wrinkles and are completely normal as your house ages. Cracks that are around 1/8-inch wide (about the width of 1-2 toothpicks) don’t need to be dealt with either, but it’s a good idea to check them every few months and make sure they’re not expanding. For cracks that are wider than 1/4-inch, it’s best to contact a qualified expert to take a look and make any necessary repairs. These may indicate an underlying structural problem in your foundation, so don’t ignore them!
Water Stains in the Ceiling or Attic
The only thing standing between your house and a Jumanji-style flood is your roof, so take care of it! If you see water stains in your attic, your house is trying to tell you that it’s not prepared for another rain (or snow). Do a full roof inspection to get a better sense of the damage, and then address the problem (roof repairs should generally be left to qualified experts).
A Huge Water Bill
If your water bill rises dramatically but you didn’t increase your water usage, your house is crying out for help! You may have a hidden leak in your pipes that’s draining water (and cash), so check your toilets and showers. If you can’t find the leak, call a plumber. There’s more than your bank account at stake – a leak left to its own devices can quickly lead to mould.
Stagnant Water in Your Yard
If your area has received a lot of rain recently, you may have pools of water in your yard. You don’t want this! Pooling water could mean you have a grading issue, which will only get worse over time. Give a professional landscaper a call – they’ll know if your yard needs to be re-graded and can tackle the problem for you.
Sparking Lights and Electronics
If your lights or your appliances are sparking unexpectedly, you may have a problem with your electrical wiring. These problems are fire hazards and are not to be messed with, so call an electrician immediately!
Tunnels of Mud Leading to Your Foundation
These tiny tunnels make your house really unhappy because they usually mean one thing: termites. If you find pencil-thick tunnels of mud around your foundation walls, break one off and wait a few days. If it comes back, termites are active in your home and need to be exterminated!
Piles of Dust
If you dust regularly, but your tables and chairs seem to mysteriously regain a film of dust within a day or two, it could be one of two things: the air ducts in your home may need to be cleaned, or your furnace may be asking for a filter change! Regularly inspecting your air ducts and changing your furnace filter can prevent expensive repairs in the future, so these two tasks are definitely worth doing.