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10-minute home repairs you can do yourself

Many newcomers come from places where they had ready access to inexpensive handymen to take care of small repair and maintenance tasks around the house.

On moving to Canada, they are often surprised to learn that a handyman can charge a good amount of money per hour.

But there’s no need to either break the piggy bank or neglect small but important repairs. No matter what your level of expertise, there are plenty of small fixups you can do around your home with relative ease. It’s always advisable to call in an expert for large-scale home repairs, but more minor projects are a great way to keep your home in top shape for your family and potential buyers should you ever decide to sell.

“Maintaining your home is by far the best way to preserve its value,” advises Mark Wolle, broker-owner at Royal LePage Wolle Realty in Kitchener, Ontario. “And with an arsenal of timely small-scale repairs, homeowners can keep many larger scale fixes at bay.”

There are hundreds of small ways you can keep your home in top shape. Invest in a good home-repair manual, or visit your local library for resource materials.

Here, Wolle offers his top five easy 10-minute fix-ups:

1. Fill cracked drywall seams. Using a taping knife, smooth a piece of nylon drywall tape over the crack, working from the centre toward the edges. Cover the tape with a thin layer of joint compound and let dry. Apply a second coat, feathering at edges. Sand, prime, and repaint the area.

2. Silence squeaky floors. Scrape the joints between floorboards to remove dirt, then sprinkle a little baby powder between the squeaky ones. Bounce up and down on the area to work the powder into the joint.

3. Repair a sticky sliding glass door. Clean the tracks by moving the door to one side and then the other as you vacuum. Clean the tracks with denatured alcohol. Spray the upper track with silicone spray and rub paraffin wax along the lower one.

4. Unclog a sink with non-toxic chemicals. To clear most clogs, pour a cup of baking soda into the drain and then add a pint of vinegar. Stand back and wait for an eruption. After about fifteen minutes, pour several cups of boiling water down the drain.

5. Caulk a bathtub. Remove old caulk. Tape above and below the joint that needs caulking and fill tub with water to weigh it down and open the joint. Squeeze a thin bead of caulk along the open joint. Use your index finger to smooth out the caulk; remove tape and wipe away excess with a damp rag.

– News Canada

• For more information, visit www.royallepage.ca.

Posted: Nov 1, 2016

April 2019

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