Home Care Myths

Here are eight top home care myths that are a waste of time and money:

1. Stone countertops are indestructible.

In fact, stone countertops are easy to stain and scratch. Plus, regular household cleaners and mildly acid substances, like soda, coffee and wine can dull stone surfaces over time.

2. Your smoke detector’s test button is foolproof.

The test button tells you the sound is working, not if the sensor that detects smoke is working. Use real smoke to check it. Light a match, blow it out and hold it near the detector. If the alarm goes off, it’s working.

3. Gutter guards are maintenance free.

Gutter guards may keep out leaves, but small debris can still get through. It’s best to clean them every two years or once a year if your home is surrounded by trees to prevent damage to your gutters. You can also hire a professional gutter cleaner to go up on that ladder for you.

4. A lemon is a great way to clean a disposal.

A lemon’s acidic juice will corrode the metal parts of your disposal, and coffee grounds will accumulate in pipes and clog them. The best natural cleaner is baking soda, which will clean the blades and will not damage the metal.

5. Mow your lawn short and you will mow less often.

It’s important to leave 1 to 3 inches of grass above the roots to keep your lawn lush. Removing more will leave your grass too weak to withstand weeds and pests. It also exposes the roots to sun, causing the lawn to dry out.

6. CFLs cost too much are dangerous (compact fluorescent lights).

Compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) aren’t as expensive as you think and don’t contain enough mercury to cause any harm. Plus, CFLs last an average of five years.

7. Trendy kitchen re-do will increase my home’s value.

Home trends come and go quickly. Instead of remodeling in the latest look, try painting with trendy colors. A complete matching set of appliances is always a good design decision and does so much to make a kitchen feel and look updated. If you do opt for a full remodel, choose elements with a timeless style, like wood floors and subway tile.

8. A contractor recommendation from a friend is good enough.

Look for a contractor as if it were a job interview. Before hiring, talk to a couple of sources, check the contractor’s references and ask a local building inspector which contractors meet code on the properties they have had to inspect.

"The Residential Specialist"‘– Council of Residential Specialists, CRS 

 Dakota Carol has a CRS designation