Expert Interview Series: Elizabeth Dodson of HomeZada on Smart Home Maintenance

 

What are some of the challenges homeowners face when it comes to managing their homes? What are the most overlooked spaces in houses when it comes to home maintenance and cleaning? These are a few of the questions answered to help homeowners understand what it means to focus on smart home management and how to make great decisions that effect our living arrangements. Our homes are often a large purchase that can increase in value however this value is only growing if the proper care for the home is taken. To learn the answers to these questions and more, please read here.

Elizabeth Dodson is the co-founder HomeZada where she manages the marketing and business development along with the customer experience. We recently talked to her about the common challenges homeowners face when maintaining their houses. Here’s what she had to say:

What are some of the challenges homeowners face when it comes to managing their homes?

Homeowners are challenged by understanding all the details of their homes and making the best decisions about their home. By overlooking these common details, homeowners become under insured because they do not have the details of the full contents in this home, spend too much money on fix-it costs due to challenges in managing maintenance tasks and go over budget on remodeling projects without the information needed to properly plan for projects.

What are the biggest oversights we make in caring for our homes?

The biggest oversight that most homeowners face in caring for their homes is not properly maintaining their home because they either do not know what tasks need to be completed or they do not remember when these tasks need to be completed. When homeowners are not properly maintaining their homes, then it can result in an inefficient, unhealthy and potentially unsafe home.

What are the most overlooked spaces in houses when it comes to home maintenance and/or cleaning?

The most overlooked spaces when maintaining and cleaning a home is the laundry room where dryer vents need to be cleaned and garages. Often times, garages house hot water heaters, potentially water filtration systems and central vacuum systems.

Additionally, most homeowners place a lot of equipment, lawn care tools and other items in their garage when the storage in their home is full. The equipment in the garage needs to be maintained and garage organization can help understand what is actually in the garage.

What are the risks of neglecting these spaces?

The risk of neglecting laundry rooms and garages is that inefficiencies can occur with the equipment and appliances found in these spaces. For instance, dryer vents that have not been cleaned can cause fires in addition to an inefficiently operating machine.

Most homes have plenty of nooks and crannies for dirt, dust and pests to hide out in.

What are the most common problems associated with crawl spaces you’ve heard about?

Faulty doors to access crawl spaces that do not properly close will allow access by small animals and other pests. These unwanted pests can cause problems to air conditioning ducts that may run through the crawl space. If improper grading exists in a home’s crawl space area then water can accumulate and cause damage to the structure of the home. Mold can also develop from excess water which can ultimately cause structural and health issues.

What advice can you offer homeowners on developing a good maintenance schedule for their home? What areas should they make sure to include on their list?

Creating a maintenance schedule can be simple by using tools to help identify when tasks need to be completed and how often. Changing your home’s air filters can keep your heating and air conditioning units running properly in addition to keeping the air clean.

It’s smart to get professional help twice a year to check that your heating and air conditioning units are functioning properly. Maintenance tasks like checking windows for potential leaks, cleaning out the ventilation hood in over your stove, cleaning out your refrigerator grills, and other tasks can create better functioning equipment and appliances. Making sure these tasks are performed on a regular schedule will be helpful in managing the home.

What are some good DIY home repair projects that even new homeowners should be able to tackle?

Home repair generally depends on a homeowner’s skill and comfort level. However, these simple home repair projects are easy for most homeowners.

To manage outdoor landscaping and manage water bills, fixing outdoor sprinkler systems can be done when testing the system. Replacing leaky faucets can be managed by a homeowner, however more intricate plumbing issues may require a licensed plumber. Changing door locks, caulking in bathrooms and around windows, cabinet repair or minor carpentry around the home are also home repair projects that homeowners can tackle on their home.

When should homeowners make sure to call in professional help?

Engaging a professional will generally occur when homeowners either do not have the time or skill to accomplish the tasks. Electrical and plumbing tasks may require professionals. Replacing appliances or installing new smart home technology will require professionals.

How has technology changed the way we care for our homes?

Technology can enhance the way we care about our homes. Using technology to manage our schedules, time and funds to care for our homes can make homeowners more aware and more productive when caring for their homes. Technology helps us identify what we own within our homes and helps us document these details to create a full picture of how our homes operate.

Posted on HomeZada

 

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