Tips for Enhancing Your Curb Appeal This Summer

By | Business, Gutter, Homeowners, Tips

Summer is a great time for upgrading the exterior of your home and increasing your home’s overall “curb appeal”-aka how attractive your property appears to an on-looker. While curb appeal is particularly important for people looking to sell their homes, it can also be important for homeowners looking to hold on to them as well. The more attractive your home is, the higher the overall appeal and value of the neighborhood, which will certainly endear to your neighbors who are looking to put their homes on the market.

In addition, keeping your home in good condition will also be a useful asset if the time ever comes that you want to sell your home, particularly if you experience a major life change of some kind that requires you to sell your home quickly. You never know, increasing the curb appeal of your home might also gain you an offer you can’t refuse that you weren’t even looking for! Here are 7 great upgrades you can do this summer to increase both the appeal and the value of your home.

Touch up your paint and siding

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Warm weather provides a great opportunity to pressure wash off all of the accumulated grime and muck that builds up on the exterior of your home over the winter. Repainting trim can also give your home a remarkably fresh look without a huge price tag or a great deal of labor. For wood exteriors, remember that paint does more than just decorate your home, it also protects it. Scrape off any areas of chipped or peeling paint and then touch up any exposed surfaces. You can also significantly increase the exterior appeal of your home by painting your front door a bright new color. This is also a great time to give your siding a good inspection to see how well it is holding up and if you might need to start thinking about getting it replaced soon.

Clean, replace or upgrade gutters

Giving your gutters a good cleaning every spring is a must, but you should also consider upgrading and replacing your gutters as well. Gutters not only add to or detract from the appeal of your home, but they also protect it as well. Gutters are meant to carry water off your roof and away from your home to protect from flood damage. Quality gutters are a smooth, seamless, almost invisible extension of your home. When they are designed and installed well, you won’t even notice they are there. Improperly installed or cheap gutters, however, can be unsightly and can even fail when you need them most. When you upgrade to high-quality gutters like K-guard gutters, not only will you increase the overall aesthetics of your home, but you can see a decrease in maintenance costs as well.

Upgrade accessories

House numbers, door hardware, mailboxes, light fixtures and other small details are all simple items that greatly add to or detract from the overall appeal of your home. They are small, inexpensive upgrades that can provide a massive return. You can line walkways with new solar lighting that not only increases the appeal of your home but also makes it safer. While you are upgrading door hardware, you might consider investing in a new security system. Not only will this increase the security of your home, but it can also make it more attractive to buyers if you decide to sell.

Deck out your porch or patio

Whether or not you use your front porch, stoop, entryway or patio for entertaining, enjoying your morning coffee or just hanging out on a weekend, making the entry to your home an inviting space is a great way to enhance curb appeal. Whether it be porch swings, rocking chairs or cafe tables, there are a wide range of accessories you can outfit your front porch with to create a comfortable, cozy space. Plants or flower boxes can also add appeal to even the tiniest of spaces. For those that don’t want to tend to flowers or plants, wreaths, plaques, welcome mats and welcome signs can all make your home a place where guests and family alike will feel truly welcome.

Add outdoor art

Bird Baths, fountains, decorative boulders, statues, metal cutouts or sculptures are all ways to add some aesthetic value to your home. You can plant a flower bed around your mailbox or plant a small garden in the middle of a circular drive. Window boxes filled with colorful blooms also add beauty and warmth to the exterior of your home. You can increase the overall value and appeal of your home by adding anything that transforms your home from merely a house into an architectural work of art. Even the smallest additions can go a long way.  

Paint or tile your front porch, entryway or doorstep

Peeling paint on your front porch is as unattractive as it is uninviting. Repainting will certainly increase the aesthetic appeal, but you can increase the value of your home by upgrading to outdoor tiles. The best part is that not only can tiling your steps give your home a fresh, modern look, it’s also a fairly easy and inexpensive DIY project. You can even buy outdoor tiles that have a non-slip coating that will make your porch safer in inclement weather. While you are upgrading the surface of your porch or patio, it’s also a good time to paint, repair or replace porch railings.

Upgrade your walkways

Porches and patios are the only places you can do a tile upgrade. Covering existing concrete walkways with tile or upgrading to walkways made of paving stones can give a high-end look to even the most modest of homes. For a slightly less labor-intensive project, however, you can also apply a colored concrete resurfacer to existing concrete and then simply line your walkways with bricks or stone. This will give your walkways a beautiful custom look without all the labor or expense.

Upping your curb appeal is just a few simple steps away. For any questions or concerns about your home’s needs, don’t forget to consult the experts at K-Guard. Together we can ensure a safe and happy home for you this summer.

Gutter Cleaning Tips For Springtime

By | Gutter, Tips

gutter guard 32046427_l-300x200 Most property owners realize that gutters provide protection from debris, leaves and dirt that would otherwise coagulate on the roof of the home. Nevertheless, some people fall into the trap of overlooking gutters until serious issues occur. Fortunately, installing guards and cleaning gutters on a regular basis are not difficult tasks. Below are some Springtime gutter tips to help you protect your home from moisture damage.

  1. Install Gutter GuardsWithout gutter guards a house is susceptible to various types of damage, some of which may be serious. Leaky roofs, rotting wood, seepage of water into the basement of the home, and even damage to the foundation are all possibilities if such guards are not used. The primary purpose of these devices are to prevent the aforementioned clogs from occurring in the first place. This allows the water to drain appropriately, which eliminates the need for frequent Springtime gutter replacement and helps to prevent damage to the home.
  2. Regular Gutter Maintenance. Using plastic gloves, you should remove all visible dirt, leaves, twigs and other debris that may have collected in the gutter during winter. If necessary, use a putty knife to remove stubborn areas of decomposed foliage, but use this tool gently to avoid damage. Next, thoroughly rinse the gutters with the garden hose to ensure any traces of dirt or leaves are removed. Springtime is also a good time to tighten loose screws or nails.

Additional Springtime Gutter Tips:

Checking the downspout for obstructions is a good idea as well, which is easily accomplished with a strong spray from a standard garden hose. If the downspout of your gutter system goes directly to the drain, disassemble this part before using the garden hose so that you do not accidentally force debris into the drain and ultimately create another problem. Finally, if you notice any roof problems or it appears that the time has come for new gutters, contact a professional to obtain a free quote for this project.

No Gutter Guards? You Might Need These Gutter Cleaning Tips

By | Gutter, Tips

gutter guard Gutter-Cleaning-Tips-For-April-2016-300x140 As April arrives, it is time to begin your spring cleaning routine. Besides dusting your home’s interior, you should head outdoors for gutter cleaning. At this time of year, gutters are probably filled with debris from newly budded branches and old leaves and pine needles from winter storms. To avoid rain overflow, there are some gutter tips that will help to safely get ready for springtime.

1. Use the Correct Spring Nozzle

While gutter cleaning, it is best to use a spray nozzle with a pistol-grip handle, which can be easily hung on the front of the gutter while moving the ladder. It is advised to spray in the direction of the downspout so that small debris exits quickly.

2. Practice Ladder Safety

It is vital to use a sturdy aluminum ladder that can hold a large bucket for debris. A four-legged ladder is best for a ranch-style home, and an extension ladder should be used for a two-story residence. The bucket should be secured to the ladder with a lanyard as well.

3. Rake the Roof

The first step of gutter cleaning is raking the debris off your roof. If not, the next storm will wash the dirt down into your newly cleaned gutters, which can lead to clogs. Also, leaving debris on the roof can cause water damage around your chimney.

4. Wear Rubber Shoes

If you must walk on your roof, you should wear shoes with good treads. Rubber soles adhere well and will prevent slips. Since a roof may be wet in the morning, it is smart to begin cleaning when the sun is up and has dried the moisture.

5. Unblock Downspouts

It is essential to make sure your downspouts are completely clear. To unclog the pipe, it is wise to run water at full pressure and tap its side. If this is not successful, the downspout may need to be removed and flushed from the bottom. Remember to protect your eye from flying debris.

The above tips will help you get your gutters ready for springtime 2016. If you want this to be the last time you perform this task, consult with K-Guard. This company has a patented leaf-free gutter system that is durable and designed to cover the area so that gutters remain free of debris that causes blockages. With this type of system, you will never need to clean your gutters again.

Ladder Safety Tips

By | Ladder Safety, Tips, Uncategorized

gutter guard Screen-Shot-2016-03-11-at-2.05.15-PM-300x224 Here are general ladder safety tips applicable to just about any ladder in your inventory, from the common step ladder to combination and telescopic ladders, brand new or not.

Avoid ladder-related accidents by doing a quick visual inspection of the ladder you plan to use in doing home repairs this spring time. Check for visible cracks, splits and bends that are telltale signs of ladder damage. The steps and the base of the ladder should not show signs of corrosion. If you see rust spots in any part of the ladder, don’t use anti-rusts spray or any temporary fix to avoid risking your life and limb. Instead, buy a new one or borrow when you can.

Use a damp wash cloth and thoroughly wipe the rungs of the ladder clean to remove any presence of grease and oil. Majority of the accidents involving step ladders are slips caused by greasy and slippery steps so make it a habit to always wash any ladder first that you plan on using to ensure your safety.

Never put a ladder on an uneven surface particularly if you are working alone. If it’s really necessary and working it’s the only option you have, put large wooden boards on the ground to give the ladder better footing. Ask someone to hold the ladder when you’re using it for optimum safety.

Never carry light tools by hand when on the ladder. Instead, mount the tools in a tool belt. Not only is it safe, it’s also more convenient and allows you to carry more tools than you can using your hands. Setup a pulley or wench system for heavier tools or materials that are too heavy to raise by hand lines.

No matter what’s written in the equipment manual, always use the ladder one person at a time. Although some ladders are sturdy enough to carry more than one person, any sudden shift in weight distribution or uncoordinated movement could make it a highly unstable and dangerous work platform.

Use a wooden ladder when doing electrical repairs to avoid exposing yourself to the unnecessary risks of being electrocuted standing on a metal ladder that’s accidentally in contact with an exposed electrical wire or overhead lines.