Three reasons you need a home watch service!
A Vacant Home is a Vulnerable Home
If you own a home, you know that there are periods of time when your home will be unoccupied, typically when you leave for a family vacation. Usually, this is just for a long weekend or two-week vacation. Maybe you’ll hire a house-sitter or ask the neighbors to watch out for you, just in case.
However, if you have a second home, that property may be unoccupied for much longer periods of time, maybe as much as a several months. You may only use the home for a stretch in the summer and then on holidays or for family getaways. Simply locking the door and relying on a busy neighbor to check on your home from time to time is not the best way protect your investment. Quite frankly, it could lead to serious damage to or loss of your home as a result of storms, fire, theft or pests.
Before leaving your property vacant, there are a number of precautions you can take to protect your home. One of the easiest solutions is to hire a professional home watch service, like Gamble Home Services.
There are a number of scenarios that can lead to property damage. Below we have outlined the three most common issues we encounter on our home watch inspections.
1. Hurricane or Storm Damage
Here in the Barrier Islands, we know all too well that Mother Nature can unleash harsh weather in the form of heavy rains and strong winds leading to hurricanes, storm surge and flooding. This can wreak havoc to the interior and exterior of your home.
Strong winds can result in flying objects and downed tree branches damaging windows and roofs. Flooding can result in serious property damage and loss of precious belongings. Often, as a result of storms, we see small problems turn into catastrophic disasters. For example, a small roof leak can become a major source of damage in a short period of time during a heavy storm.
While not all storm damage can be avoided in a serious weather event, there are many steps that can be taken to prevent or minimize damage. As home watch professionals, an important part of our job is to identify any potential risks and to protect your home from major damage in the event of a serious storm.
We take precautions such as securing outdoor furniture so it won’t blow around, ensuring sump pumps are working properly to minimize flooding, checking for leaks and repairing small issues so they do not become big issues during a storm.
2. Faulty Electrical Systems and Failed Appliances
Imagine leaving your home for a few weeks in the summer. You lock up and are on your merry way, but unknown to you, the air conditioner stops working during your time away and you come back to a rancid smelling, damaged home. This is all too common.
We often see serious damage to homes resulting from faulty wiring and failed appliances. Faulty or old wiring, or misuse of extension cords in homes, can lead to fires. Power surges can cause appliances to fail resulting in problems ranging from basement flooding, home security systems going down and other more serious damage.
It’s not always possible to prevent these issues, but having a professional home watch service on the job may be the difference between damage to your home or complete disaster. At Gamble Home Services, we have a 60-point checklist we go through every time we inspect a home (inspections are either weekly or bi-weekly). We check that everything is in working order, and if we spot any concerns, we immediately notify you of the situation, and how we propose to fix it for you.
3. Pest Intrusion and Infestation
Another situation we often run into are pest intrusions and invasions in homes. Being close to nature can have many advantages, but pests are definitely one of its major challenges.
Rodents and animals, such as rats, mice, and raccoons can be a big problem for Island homeowners. These invaders typically are seeking food and shelter. Once they get in, they are difficult to remove and can be harmful to your family’s health. If your home is not properly secured when unattended, these animals can find their way into your home and take up residence. If they start breeding, their populations will grow and the problem can become quite costly to contain.
Insects, such as ants, termites, wasps, and bees can also take up residence on the interior or exterior of your home. Ants may be looking for food or water sources. Termites primarily feed on wood, but also feed on paper, books, insulation, and even swimming pool liners and filtration systems. Bees can take up residence and create hives in the walls of homes, wasps can form their nests under eaves, in attics and other spaces.
Part of our home inspection checklist includes looking for signs of rodent and insect infestation and taking steps to eliminate these problems.
These are just three examples of common problems we find on our home watch inspections. There are many other potential risks to consider when leaving your home unoccupied. Having a home watch professional on duty can mean the difference between detecting a problem early and avoiding damage entirely, or taking the risk of leaving your home unprotected.
Protect your property while you are away!
Don't wait until you have a problem, we have helped homeowners on Kiawah, Lower Johns and Seabrook Islands prevent damage to their second homes for more than 22 years. Call us at 843-768-9923 or request more information by filling out the form below.