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Home Inspections in Oakland County MI & Surrounding areas

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December 2018

Merry Christmas from Sterling Home Services. This past year has been a joyful, abundant year with much to be grateful for. Take time to enjoy this time of year, and take time to make it safe and healthy! In this month's newsletter, we revisit our report on how long the appliances and mechanicals in your home are supposed to last and offer up a helpful guide for holiday home safety. 
Remember - Winter is a great time to sell your house! There are fewer homes on the market so there's less competition and you'll get a better price. If you're thinking of selling, get a home inspection to help estimate a selling price and make your home as marketable as possible! 

Good to Know

Life Expectancy of Home Components
Wondering how long your garage door opener is supposed to last? Is it possible you need to replace your microwave or replace the siding on your house already? The National Association of Home Builders and Bank of America have published the "Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components" to guide homeowners in the care and maintenance of their homes. 
About 30% of the 124 million homes in the U.S. were built before 1960. The longevity of anything depends on the quality of the materials, quality of manufacturing, quality of installation, the level of maintenance and intensity of use. The findings of this study are helpful to know when purchasing or upgrading your home. For instance, linoleum lasts only 25 years at best while a wood floor will last a lifetime. If that new home you're considering has linoleum floors that are 22 years old, are you prepared to make upgrades in the next few years?
Download the study on our website. It's an easy read and good to know!

Holiday Entertaining and Safety

The Electrical Safety Foundation International recommends running through a few checklists to ensure your home is safe for holiday entertaining. Be safe and healthy this Christmas season by running through this simple list!
Fire Safety:
Test smoke alarms
Share your fire escape plan with overnight guests
Keep hallways free of clutter and adequately illuminated for escape during a fire emergency
Put older guests and guests with mobility limitations on the main floor of the house
Decorating Safety:
Do not overload outlets
Keep extension cords out of the way to prevent tripping
Do not run extension cords under rugs or furniture
Keep all decorations at least 3 feet away from heat sources
Keep breakables and candles away from children
Turn off and unplug all decorations when leaving the house or going to bed
Protect outdoor electrical devices from moisture, use weatherproof devices
Water your live Christmas tree daily
Heating Equipment Safety:
Have your HVAC system inspected annually by professionals
Observe all safety recommendations with your space heaters
Do not leave space heaters running unattended
Never leave open flames, including the fireplace, unattended

Winter To Do, Household Maintenance 

Winter is a good time to catch up on straightening up some indoor home systems. Keep your house and home in good condition this winter with these simple tasks.
1. Organize household paperwork. If you don't already have a location for all the appliance manuals, warranty paperwork and contractor contacts now is a good time to centralize and organize that paperwork. Centralize all files in one location, toss out any obsolete manuals, check use and care guides for regular maintenance schedules. 
2. Tighten up. Walk from room to room with your screwdriver and tighten any loose knobs, table legs, door hinges and handles. All those annoying jiggly or squeaky things you've been meaning to address.
3. Inventory your belongings and update your homeowner's insurance. Grab a copy of your homeowner's insurance policy, your digital camera, and a notebook. Photograph and log all your audiovisual equipment, appliances, jewelry, entertainment systems, furniture, musical instruments, artwork and anything else of value in your home. Send the list to your insurance agent to make sure these items are covered in your policy.
4. Check plumbing and water insulation. If you have any exterior pipes make sure they are properly insulated against freezing. Put a blanket around your water heater to improve its efficiency.
5. Change the filter in the furnace. Every 30 days. Now that all the windows are closed it's more important than ever to keep interior air as clean as possible.
If you find any jobs that require a professional check our list of preferred contractors: Click Here!

Christmas facts

  • On average an American family will send out 28 Christmas cards and receive 28 Christmas cards
  • Spoiled leftover account for nearly 400,000 cases of post-Christmas illnesses
  • In 2005 Forbes named Santa Claus (Age 1,651) the richest man in the world with a net worth of "infinity"
  • Xmas doesn't remove Christ from Christmas - in 1100 Christianity was spelled Xianity and X became a symbolic syllable for Christ
  • Americans spend approximately $8 billion annually on Christmas decorations

Lessons from a Snowman:

  • Wearing white is always in style - even after Labor Day.
  • Getting outside in the winter is good for your health.
  • It's fun just to hang out in your front yard.
  • We're all made up of mostly water.
  • Accessories don't have to be expensive.
  • Don't get too much sun!
  • If you're a little bottom heavy - hey, that's okay!
  • You know you've made it when they write a song about you.
  • If you look down and can't see your feet - you're probably not very active.
  • Sometimes sweating too much can have disastrous results.


Have a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday Season and Happy New Year! From Sterling Home Services
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