How to keep your house healthy and safe so it will keep its value
Every year, millions of injuries happen at home. Although our homes are supposed to keep us safe and comfortable, there are still items in it that could do us harm or it’s our careless behaviour that could lead to an injury.
To keep your house as safe and healthy as possible, and to maintain its value, as well, here are some things you should watch out for.
1. Too much moisture
Excess moisture can be detrimental to your home. The mold and mildew that is collecting and spreading in corners, the basement or the attic can ruin the walls and wooden furniture. Not to mention that they can harm your health, as well.
Unless you live in a tropical region, the reason for mold or mildew present in your house is usually an undetected leaky pipe. Deal with the problem as soon as possible and make sure the moisture is soaked up completely.
You can also get a dehumidifier which helps especially in the spring and summer to make your home more comfortable to be in.
2. Poisonous items
Common house items such as cleaners, detergents, mouthwash, or perfumes could be very dangerous if swallowed. If you have kids or if you are frequently visited by people with kids, make sure all of these potentially poisonous items are out of children’s reach
Kids are naturally curious and could easily try to drink whatever they get their hands on. Every year, millions of children end up in emergency rooms because of something they indigested at home.
3. Lead in the paint
If your home was built before the end of the 702, the paint in your walls probably contains lead. It may be under the topcoat of the walls, as well as the windows and floor varnish. When you choose to do the renovation, lead dust is stirred up, so its toxic particles get in the air and could cause health problems, especially in a child. The same thing happens when the paint starts chipping.
It’s best to get an inspector or a contractor to measure the level of lead in your house and in water. Home lead tests are not always accurate, and it’s better to be sure.
When it comes to pests, prevention is the best cure. It’s easier to never allow them to appear, so:
- don’t leave the food uncovered
- don’t leave pet food on the floor overnight
- wash your pet regularly with an appropriate shampoo
- use herbs such as wormwood or lemon every other day – mix it with water and spray it around your hose.
That way, you will keep ants, fleas, and other insects away. However, it’s very difficult to keep them aways in some countries and regions, especially in Australia. Spiders, termites, roaches find their way into homes easily there. So, it’s perfectly normal to look for effective pest control in Cairns or Perth as soon as the problem has been identified. It’s the best course of action for your household, too – professionals will bring a long-lasting solution. You want it especially with termites, as they can seriously damage your foundations.
5. Radon inside your home
Unfortunately, 1 in 15 homes (including apartments) has a high level of radon. It is a radioactive gas that gets released into the air when uranium in the soil and water starts breaking down. It is one of the main causes of lung cancer in nonsmokers. It is that much more dangerous because you can’t see it or smell it.
A home kit can be helpful here – it’s inexpensive and easily found in home improvement stores. Follow the instructions carefully and then take the kit to be analyzed. A reading of 4 picocuries per liter of air (pCi/L) or higher is considered unsafe but even somewhat lower than that is still recommendable to deal with.
In case there is a high level of radon in your home, you need to get a certified radon-mitigation contractor. They will install a piping system which will get the gas going out of your home, under it.
6. Fire hazard
Let’s make it clear – there are many items inside your house that could easily spread fire in case it appears. You shouldn’t leave it to sheer luck, so make sure you have a smoke alarm on every floor and every room. Get a fire blanket and a bucket as well. You should have a multipurpose extinguisher within your reach and you need to know how to use it properly.
The first step is to pull the pin, and then aim at the base of the fire and squeeze/press the handle. Sweep from side to side until the fire goes out completely.
Keeping your house healthy and safe is predominantly important for you and your family members. But bear in mind as well that keeping its value through responsible maintenance will mean a lot if you ever decide to sell it.
A safe and healthy home is what we all aspire to.