Caring for Your New Home
We construct your home with carefully selected materials and the effort of experienced craftsmen and laborers under the supervision of our field personnel. Although this group works from detailed plans and specifications, because a home is one of the last hand-built products left in the world, each one is unique and over time, each behaves differently.
Similar to an automobile, your home requires care from the first day. Regular attention is essential to maintaining a quality home for a lifetime. This section was assembled to assist you in that effort. For more comprehensive maintenance suggestions, please refer to your Homeowner’s Manual.
Spring Time Tips
- Water and fertilize lawns, landscaping & trees as needed.
- Remember that new lawns need more frequent watering than established grass. Most lawns do well on an inch or less of water per week. Broad leaf weeds are not uncommon in new lawns. The good news is that with just a little care, the majority will typically go away within or shortly after the first growing season.
- Check gutters to be sure they are clean and free of debris.
- Irrigation systems should be shut down by November 1 and should be winterized before the first hard freeze.
- Lawn fertilization, lime applications, and weed control measures should be completed before winter.
- Prune shrubs and hedges by November 15.
- Prune trees in November when cooler weather forces sap to stop flowing.
- Cut back (most) perennials as they die, and complete rose pruning by the end of November.
- Remove and empty all hoses for winter storage; cover your outside faucets with a cover that can be purchased at your local home improvement store.
- Ensure that gutters are free of debris.
Tile and Grout
If you have epoxy grout then there is no need to seal the grout, but you will need to keep it clean. If you have aggregate grout, do seal the grout in your bathroom or kitchen as it helps maintain the aesthetic appearance of your floor as well as its longevity. To clean the grout, use a soft toothbrush and non-abrasive cleaner. For extremely hard to remove stains, contact a tile company for advice before using an abrasive, which can permanently damage the surface. In addition, you will want to seal any natural stone tile (typically installed for your kitchen backsplash and shower floor). Penetrating stone sealers will work well for these sealing applications.
Windows and Mirrors
Use a clean cloth and a commercially available glass cleaner.
Use the appliances’ instruction books to learn the proper use and maintenance of your kitchen appliances. Be sure you complete your warranties and record them with the manufacturer(s).
To clean the tank or burners, seek professional help. For routine maintenance, follow the instructions provided on the heater. Keep all flammable materials well away from the water heater. Flushing the tank at least once per year will typically lengthen the life of your water heater.
Be sure to locate and identify your water shut-off valve. Should water shut-off be necessary in a house with an electric water heater, be sure to turn off the water heater’s circuit breaker to avoid burning out the heater element. Before turning on the breaker for the heater, run water from the hot water pipes into a sink to bleed air out of the lines.
Sump Crock and Pump
Every six months you should pour a bucket of water into the sump crock to ensure the pump is working properly and the discharge pipe is clear.