Categories
Home Improvement

10 [Costly] Mistakes That Could Be Destroying Your Home

Whether you’ve just purchased a house or have been a homeowner for decades, there are several common mistakes that homeowners often make. Unfortunately, they can also lead to costly repairs! No need to panic though, just follow the guide below to ensure you don’t make these errors too – #10 may surprise you!

1. Ignoring Your Roof

Out of sight, out of mind, right? Wrong. Ignoring your roof can be detrimental to your wallet if not taken care of on a regular basis. It’s recommended that homeowners get a roof inspection every few years. A trained professional can spot any damage that may have been done from past storms or wear and tear that comes naturally over time. Schedule a FREE inspection with us today and rest assured that your home stays safe from leaks and other costly damage. 

2. Over-Using Bleach to Clean Your Home

If you rely on bleach to disinfect every nook and cranny, you could be doing more harm than good. Bleach can:

  • Eat through sealant on stone surfaces such as granite.
  • Discolor colored grout and laminate.
  • Cause enamel and acrylic tubs to fade.
  • Dissolve vinyl and linseed-based flooring such as linoleum
  • Corrode seals within the disposal.

Not to mention bleach can fuel the growth of mold on porous and absorbent materials like grout. Yes, whitening grout with bleach can actually create a mold feeding ground. A safer option is to go with a water and vinegar solution for your cleaning jobs. 

3. Having Ivy Climb Your House

Training ivy to scale your home may seem like a scene straight out of an English fairy tale, but it can actually damage your home. It can dig into the siding and if removed, damage the exterior itself. Additionally, the roots of the ivy on siding and shingles can cause cracks in brick and wood, resulting in moisture and insects entering it. These can end up in costly repairs, so maybe just ditch the English cottage dream and avoid ivy on your home altogether. 

4. Not Keeping Gutters Cleaned 

Gutters are extremely important to your home’s well-being. They help control the flow of rainwater to protect your roof, walls, landscape, and foundation. But if neglected, unattended gutters can turn into a homeowner’s nightmare. When gutters get clogged with leaves, sticks, and other debris, it can result in a leaky roof or water damage to both the interior and exterior of your home. Gunked-up gutters can also breed homes for pests, rodents, mold, and bee infestations. If sand-like granules are found in your gutters, it could mean your roof’s shingles are deteriorating as well. If you notice these granules in your gutters or on your driveway, call us for a free inspection to ensure your roof’s integrity. 

5. Relying on Chemical Drain Cleaners

Avoiding an expensive plumber and just grabbing the cheaper drain cleaning product at the store sure seems tempting. However, the chemicals in those cleaners like hydrochloric acid and sulfuric acid can erode your pipes. Mechanical methods like your plunger or a drain snake are not only safer but also more effective. And if that doesn’t get the job done, a plumber is still a better option than a busted pipe, right?

6. Planting Trees Too Close to Anything

A tree root pushing through your driveway, sidewalk, or your home’s foundation sounds like a nightmare, right? That’s why placing trees at an appropriate distance from your property is essential to avoiding costly cracks and damage later on. 

7. Using the Wrong Caulk

Who knew there were all kinds of caulk? There’s bath caulk, concrete caulk, gutter caulk, mortar caulk, and more. Using the wrong kind on your project can end up in damage done due to poor adherence allowing moisture to seep in and wreak havoc. Before grabbing up that caulk, just make sure you’re using the right kind for whatever your project may be. 

8. Over-Sealing Countertops

No need to smother your poor countertops! Applying sealant too frequently can create streaky or cloudy appearances. So how do you know when it’s time to reseal? Try dripping some water on areas you use a lot and see if the water remains beaded after 15 minutes. If it doesn’t, it’s probably time for resealing. Always refer to your manufacturer’s recommendations though because different materials can have different needs. 

9. Piling Firewood Next to Your Exterior Wall

Storing firewood right outside the backdoor can seem like a great idea for easy access, but it can also be an ideal spot for termites to hang out. Placing firewood at least 20 feet from your home’s exterior is a safe distance and hopefully not too far of a walk to fuel your fireplace! 

10. Not Performing Routine Exterior Maintenance

Letting exterior maintenance fall to the wayside can result in costly repairs down the road. Preparing your home for the summer heat can be especially important. If you’ve noticed your energy bills becoming higher than usual, it could mean that your roof isn’t doing its job and could be in need of repairs. Contact us for a free inspection so that we can ensure your roof is ready to handle the summer heat. It could save you lots of time and money in the long run. 

Did any of these surprise you or should any others be added to the list? Join the conversation on Facebook and let us know what you think! 

Categories
Roofing

6 Signs You Need a New Roof

A new roof can be a costly investment but is essential to both you and your family’s safety. Your roof protects you from the rain, wind, and other natural elements, not to mention sets the stage for your home’s curb appeal and appearance. That’s why knowing when your roof has reached the end of its lifespan is so important! Keep an eye out for these warning signs and make sure to get a professional roof inspection ASAP should you see them on your home. 

Shingles are visibly worn

Have you noticed sand-like granules in your gutters or on your drive-way? Are your shingles so worn your roof looks like it has bald spots? These could be signs that your shingles are old and the lack of granules on them can result in excess heat entering your home and therefore increasing your air conditioning costs. Furthermore, once exposed, the asphalt underneath will dry out and crack, making your roof susceptible to leaks. 

Shingles are cupped and curled

If your shingles are visibly buckled, curled, cracked, or missing, it means that wind-driven moisture can easily get under the shingles resulting in leaks and rot. 

Your neighbors are getting new roofs

We don’t mean “keeping up with the Joneses.” If you live in a neighborhood the homes were probably built around the same time and if others around you are getting new roofs, it probably means yours is about due too. 

You’ve experienced leaks

Roofs are made of many components such as shingles, deck paper, flashing, vent stack boots, and more. As the roof gets older and several of these components start to fail, the roof should be replaced. 

The roof has experienced major damage

If more than about ⅓ of your roof needs repairs due to storms, wind, or hail, it is most cost-effective to simply replace it. This is because the repair is costlier on a per square foot basis due to it being more time-consuming to integrate old shingles with new ones. Not to mention, the mix of old and new shingles just won’t look good.

Your roof looks bad

Aesthetics are extremely important to homeowners and potential buyers. If your roof looks old and worn out, it loses curb appeal and value. A new roof can boost a home’s appearance and value by more than you’d think. 

If you’ve been hit by recent storms or if you’re not sure about your roof’s condition, then you should consider getting a free inspection with one of our trained professionals. There is zero obligation and it could mean preventing roof failure and the costly damage that comes with it!

Get in touch with us today by calling (240) 512-8210 or use this link to schedule online. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the best tips on taking care of your home! 

Categories
Roofing

Can Hail Really Damage Your Roof or Is It a Scam?

Hailstorms may not seem like the worst type of natural disaster that can damage your home – but they are the most common. Hail can also cause a surprising amount of damage to your home including the roof, siding, windows, and gutters. 

But most homeowners don’t even know they have damage until it’s too late!

Preventing costly repairs starts with a professional hail damage inspection. Yet most homeowners won’t do this because they don’t see any damage and think their home is ok. The only problem? Hail damage starts small and gets worse over time. That means big repair bills later. 

How big are we talking about? Well, one homeowner we worked with let hail damage fester to the point where leaks had formed. The leaking water damaged the wood structure underneath, the attic insulation and ceiling drywall. The cost of repairs was over $20,000. 

Quick Question: Does the thought of spending $20,000 to fix your roof excite you?

We didn’t think so. 

Since life is too short to make all the mistakes yourself, we’ve put together this information to help homeowners avoid this situation. Read on to learn how hail can damage a roof and why you should address it ASAP!

How Hail Damages A Roof

Did you know hail can fall at speeds upwards of 50mph? When hailstones impact your roof, it can do some serious damage. 

Hailstones vary in size, shape, and hardness and can create a random pattern of dents or depressions. 

Why Get A Hail Damage Roof Inspection ASAP

Hail damage cannot be seen from the ground level of a home. Look at the image below to understand why.

The photo on the left was taken immediately after a hailstorm, and the camera was about 12-18 inches away from the hail impact. Unless you have magical superpowers, you can’t see that from the ground.  

The image on the right is what hail damage starts to look like years later. The protective granules have continued to wear off. Damage to this extent is much easier to see but usually means costly roof leaks are already happening.

Getting a roof inspection after a significant hailstorm may seem like a hassle, but it’s the only way to catch damage early and prevent costly repairs.

Who To Call For A Professional Hail Damage Inspection? 

If your home has been hit with severe weather, our expert team is here to help! 

Request a free hail damage inspection today!

These inspections are quick, painless, and free if you choose us. We will be able to spot any potential damage before it leads to costly repairs. If you don’t have any roof damage, we’ll be able to provide a report detailing your roof’s condition which is good to have on file for your insurance company. 

Call 888-242-6831 today or use our online contact form.

Interested in learning more? Connect with us on Facebook for tips and see what real homeowners have to say about working with us!

Categories
Roofing

How to Know When You Need a New Roof (it’s not as obvious as you think!)

How do you know when your roof has reached the end? Most homeowners wait until costly problems like roof leaks become apparent. Don’t get caught with costly repairs; find out what to look for when its time for an entire roof replacement below: 

 

1. Buckling and curling shingles

 

When your shingles are buckling or curling, its time for a new roof. The problem with these shingles is that they leave the structure underneath exposed to the elements, making the structure vulnerable to water damage.

 

 

2. Missing Shingles

 

The integrity of your roof could be endangered if you see missing shingles. Severe storms can pull off several shingles at a time, leaving your home defenseless to roof leaks and water damage. 

 

 

3. Daylight seeping in through the roof

 

If you see daylight in your attic, the underlying decking on your roof may be in a weakened state from excessive moisture.  When light can penetrate your roof, water can penetrate your roof as well. 

 

 

4. Interior Stains or mold and mildew growth

 

Are stains, or worse, mold, appearing on your ceiling? A common cause of these stains is moisture trapped inside the house or roof leaks. 

 

 

5. Dark Spots 

 

Algae growth, fungus, mold, or vegetation can cause dark spots on the surface of your shingles. You can treat these areas with 1:1 water and bleach mixture.

 

 

6. Increase in energy cost

 

Have you noticed a sudden spike in the value of your energy bill? When your attic is improperly ventilated cooling costs rise due to trapped air in the attic. Additionally, attic moisture can drip into your insulation and lessens its effectiveness. 

 

 

7. Old Roof 

 

Most roofing professionals believe that roofs typically last anywhere from 20 to 25 years.  If you notice that your neighbors are getting new roofs, it’s probably time for you to get one too. Houses built around the same time tend to experience the same weather patterns, which means that the wear and tear of your roof is nearing the end. 

 

At the end of the day, if you notice one or more of these warning signs Mars Restoration is here to help! Get your home protected by scheduling your comprehensive free roof inspection from our team of highly trained specialist at 888-242-6831or online today!

Follow us on Facebook for more tips about how to care for your home!

 

Categories
Roofing

Prevent These Costly Problems With A Roof Inspection

Have you ever heard the saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”? This is true for many things that require maintenance to perform best like your health, your car, and your home. 

But this is especially true when it comes to your roof! 

If you’re like most homeowners you’re probably thinking, “there’s not a hole in my roof so what’s the big deal?”

You may be surprised to learn that your roof could have damage, even if it’s not leaking right now. 

Roof problems can be caused by several things. Hail and strong winds usually cause noticeable signs of a problem like missing roof shingles. But other types of damage, like installation errors, manufacture defects, and worn out roof flashing can cause problems that lead to roof leaks. 

If you don’t fix roof problems right away, the damage can spread to other areas of your home. Scary right? Read on to learn how getting a professional roof inspection can avoid these costly hail related problems. #3 on the list is super important!

 

1. Mold

Your roof is the single most important way to keep water out of your home. That’s why most roof problems lead to roof leaks. Once water makes its way past a roof’s protective barrier all bets are off. Water can soak into the insulation, wooded support beams, plywood and more. The heat in your attic and water-soaked materials create an environment ripe for mold growth.  

This four-letter word is enough to send shivers down anyone’s spine. Mold is something that even experienced homeowners fear, and rightfully so. It can cause all sorts of health problems AND expensive repairs. Getting routine roof inspections is an easy way to prevent this situation from happening. 

2. Roof Repairs

Typical asphalt roofs can last anywhere from 15-25 years… if they are maintained! Hail and other storm damage can weaken parts of your roofing system reducing its overall lifespan. If hail damage isn’t fixed, it can lead to costly repairs later. 

3. Reduced Home Value

Your home’s roof makes up about 40% of your home’s curb appeal. A roof in bad shape can easily distract from the beauty of your home and lower its value. 

This is especially true if you are looking to sell your home soon. Most home buyers will avoid properties with roof issues due to the high cost of repairs. What’s worse is roof problems are often noted in inspection reports and is a top reason most real estate deals don’t make it to closing. 

 

Want To Avoid Costly Roof Problems? 

If this question has you screaming “YES!” then you need to schedule a free roof inspection today! An expert member of our team will meet with you, fully inspect your home and give you a comprehensive evaluation of your roof’s condition. Call 888-242-6831 or click here to get started. 

Follow us on Facebook for more tips and information on taking care of your home. 

Categories
Home Improvement Roofing

Planning to Sell Your Home? Reasons to Get a Roof Inspection NOW!

Selling a home is stressful even when everything goes right. There is A LOT of time, energy, paperwork, and emotions that go into it and even small complications can feel like massive burdens. 

So, when homeowners ask us if they should get a roof inspection before they list their home, our answer is always yes! 

Not only does it pay to be safe than sorry, but it can also help prevent issues during the process. Knowledge is power and this is especially true when selling a home, so getting a roof inspection early is just plain smart! Read on to learn the three main ways getting a roof inspection can help you on your home selling journey (#3 may surprise you!).

1. Don’t Let Your Roof Make You Fail Your Home Inspection  

You may already know that an official home inspection will have to be done before you close. Home inspectors are usually third-party companies that are unbiased in the final report. They are also expertly trained to spot problems that could devalue your home or kill the deal entirely – like a bad roof, mold, etc. 

Since you are familiar with your home, there could be issues that you’re not even aware of. That’s why a roof inspection can save you a ton of stress in the long run and help spot any problems before they make it on the final report.

2. Don’t Let Your Roof Devalue Your Home

Your roof makes up about 40% of the overall curb appeal of your home. Missing shingles, existing damage, and debris buildup can send a huge red flag to potential homebuyers. Even worse, a roof in bad shape can lower your home’s overall value. Knowing how much life your roof system has left can help you through the negotiations process should you decide not to replace it.

3. Don’t Let Your Roof Prevent Your Home From Selling Or Slow The Process

If your home has been impacted by hail or severe weather and still has damage, it can throw a wrench into your plans to sell. 

If hail damage makes its way onto the home inspection report you have a few options: 

1. You Ignore It

Many buyers will back out of the sale if you don’t plan to fix the issue. In addition, the majority of insurance companies won’t insure the property for another buyer due to known damage. This is a no-win situation for anyone.

2. File A Claim

In most cases, storm damage is covered by homeowner’s insurance. This is good news because you won’t be out of pocket for a full roof or repairs, but the home sale process will have to be extended.

3. Designate Claim to Buyer

Similar to scenario #2, you file a claim but instead of waiting to get repairs done, you assign the claim benefits to the home buyer. As the seller, you will still be responsible for the deductible, but this puts the responsibility of the work on the new owner. Insurance companies and lenders will not usually allow this. 

The best-case scenario, especially if you have hail damage, is to get a roof inspection now and before you list your home. This way, while you are hunting for new homes, filing paperwork, and getting a loan the work on your roof will be done when you are ready to list. Plus, a new roof adds home value, which could mean a higher listing price. Now that’s a win-win!

 

Have questions or need more information? We’re happy to help! Contact us at 888-242-6831 or use our online contact form to schedule a roof inspection today. 

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for more ways to take care of your home!

Categories
Home Improvement

Is Your Home Outdated? Here’s How to Tell

If your home is 15 years or older, features that were once “standard” are now turn-offs for potential buyers. If you’re thinking about listing your home, that’s probably not the best news. After all, no homeowner wants to hear their home is “outdated” or the sale price should be lowered.

The good news is making small improvements to your home will not only entice new home buyers, but some projects can increase your home’s value!

So, if you are worried about curb appeal, thinking about selling your home, or are interested in maximizing home value this post is for you! Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • What home features are considered outdated (#2 may surprise you!)
  • Common home features that turn off new homebuyers
  • What you can update to maximize your home’s value

Here are the top 10 home features you should change ASAP if you plan to sell soon

 

1.Popcorn Ceilings

We had to start here. Popcorn, cottage cheese, or textured ceilings were standard 30 years ago, but today they scream HUGE PROJECT to potential home buyers. Textured ceilings add shadows giving the illusion of dark and low ceilings which you don’t want. Not to mention the risk of asbestos. If your home was built before 1979 get the ceiling material tested for asbestos before you do anything.

2. Curb Appeal

First impressions are everything, especially when it comes to selling your home. While most people will focus on improving their landscaping, there’s a bigger area you should be concerned about: your roof.

Your roof makes up about 40% of the overall curb appeal of your home. Missing shingles, existing damage, and debris buildup can send a huge red flag to potential homebuyers.

While it may seem like a big expense to get a new roof or fix repairs, doing so before you list your home can get you more money at closing. One study showed that a new roof can increase a home’s overall value by at least $12k.

3. Bathroom Carpet

Bathroom carpets – one of the many great ideas of the ’90s. But carpet is hard to keep clean which makes it a bacterial breeding ground. It can also put your home at risk for mold! Rip up that carpet and lay down easy to clean tile.

4. Laminate / Tile Countertops

Tile countertops are inconvenient, hard to clean, and hard to fix. Laminate countertops can’t handle the heat a kitchen counter should, and it screams the 90’s. Either option signals a remodel for potential buyers – the more work they think they have to do, the more scared they get.

Avoid spooking potential buyers by replacing those outdated countertops with marble, granite, quartz, wood, stainless steel, concrete, or soapstone, depending on your home and the neighborhood.

5. Dated Fixtures & Hardware

Shiny brass or gold hardware will instantly take your buyers back to the 80s. Switching them for more contemporary materials like brushed nickel is a relatively inexpensive way to make your kitchen and bathrooms instantly look more modern. If you decide to make the switch, make sure you cover all your bases, so your house matches throughout. Make sure to check your cabinet hinges and pulls, your door handles, and your lighting fixtures.

6. Storm Damage

So, this one isn’t exactly a flashback home feature, but it is something all sellers should be aware of – exterior storm damage. Why is it such a big deal? In one recent survey, 44% of people said storm damage and costly repairs were their #1 fear in owning a home.

One way to put potential buyer’s minds at ease is to get a professional roof inspection BEFORE you list your home. This way you can have proof that your roof and home are safe!

7. Exterior

New siding ranks as HGTV’s number-one upgrade to add value to a home. Old and faded or cracked siding severely damages curb appeal and lumps a home into the “fixer upper” category. If potential buyers see a damaged and unappealing exterior, they won’t expect much more from the inside. Replacing siding instantly boosts curb appeal. Refreshing the yard with new shrubs and flowers also adds curb appeal and makes the home more marketable.

8. Wallpaper Borders

The ’90s called, and they want their wallpaper back. What was once a very popular design is now officially outdated and for good reason! Eyes are drawn to the difference between the border and wall paint and it makes a room feel smaller. If you have this your home, the good news is it’s not that hard to take down.

9. Paint

A fresh coat of paint can go a long way when selling your home! Not only is it easy to do on a weekend, but it’s also budget-friendly. New paint will add to your home’s value by giving rooms an updated, clean look. Just make sure to choose neutral colors!

10. Energy Savings

If your is at least 20 years old, it may have some energy deficiencies including a lack of insulation, faulty windows, etc. This can scare off younger homebuyers who are most interested in green home improvements and energy costs.

One improvement you can make before you list your home is adding attic insulation. It won’t do anything for a house’s visual appeal, but it does much to improve a home’s energy-efficiency which will please homebuyers. Plus, most projects have a 250% ROI!

 

How many of these features does your home have? Tell us what you think in the comments below or join the conversion on Facebook.

Categories
Hail Damage Roofing

After a Hailstorm Homeowners Need to Do These 3 Things!

Hail causes about $1 billion in damage to crops and property each year.

Yet few homeowners know what steps to take after the storm to prevent further damage and escalating repair costs. So that’s exactly what we’re covering below.

 The first thing to know? Time is not on your side.

Damage from a hailstorm can leave dents in your roof, siding, and gutters which can turn into dents in your wallet if you don’t get it fixed soon after the storm has passed. 

If you’re like most homeowners, the thought of spending your hard-earned money on massive home repair bills doesn’t sound too exciting… right?! We didn’t think so.

So, what’s the best thing you can do for your home (and savings account!) after a hailstorm? These three things: 

  1. check your home for signs of damage (read on to get our handy guide!)
  2. get a professional inspection 
  3. review your homeowner’s insurance policy. 

Not doing these things after a hailstorm can and will cause expensive problems later, especially #2 on the list! Save yourself the hassle and read on to learn what you should do right after a hailstorm to keep your home safe. 

What All Homeowners Should Do After A Hailstorm

1. Inspect Your Home For Signs Of Hail Damage 

Hail damage can be hard to spot, especially if you don’t know what to look for! One of the easiest ways to know if your roof has hail damage is to check your car for dents and dings. If your car has damage, your roof likely also has damage and you should get a professional inspection asap!

If you were lucky enough to have your car parked in your garage during the storm, you’ll need to check some additional areas around your home to spot damage – like your gutters and siding.

PLEASE NOTE – Inspecting a roof can be dangerous. Always practice safety first. We do not advise you to get on your roof unless you have proper safety gear and relevant roofing or construction experience.

2. Get A Professional Hail Damage Inspection 

If you are seeing signs of hail damage, you need to call for a professional roof inspection asap

Why?

Hail damage gets worse over time and that means the longer you wait, the higher the repair bills will be. 

Getting a professional roof inspection after a storm benefits a homeowner in two major ways: you’ll learn if you have damage or not and knowing that will prevent you from making an un-needed claim on your insurance policy. 

If you’re in need of a professional hail damage inspection for your home, we can help! Call 888-242-6831 today or use our online contact form.

3. Review Your Insurance Policy

If you do have hail damage, the good news is that most insurance policies cover the repairs needed. However, every insurance policy is different, so you’ll want to make sure you review yours and keep the information handy in case you must file a hail damage claim. 

Pro Tip: One important thing to find out is if your insurance company has time limitations for filing a hail damage claim. Click here to get more tips on how hail damage claims work and why you shouldn’t be afraid to make one. 

Key Takeaways

Unpredictable storms create unpredictable problems but being proactive can prevent costly future home repairs! 

If you’re in need of a professional hail damage inspection, our expert team is here to help. Call 888-242-6831 today or use our online contact form. Make sure to follow us on Facebook and get more tips on the best way to take care of your home after a hailstorm hits.