Summer Home Maintenance Tips

Summer is finally here in the Pacific Northwest! This is the perfect time to inspect the exterior of your home and get a few maintenance projects done. It only takes a few minutes so you’ll be firing up the BBQ and enjoying some backyard entertaining in no time. 

Start at the top and work your way down.

Roof and Gutters: Get up there and visually inspect the valleys for debris, check for oose roof tiles or shingles, and check the flashing at the vents and skylights. Check for leaks especially around the satellite dish. Replace or repair as needed or call an expert like Ron at Perkins Roofing at 253-847-2075.

Check those gutters for clogs or loose fittings. Keep your gutters and especially the downspouts clean of debris. For repairs or new gutters consider Advance Custom Gutters at 253-472-9460.

Also make sure nothing is touching or nearly touching the roof, eaves, or gutters. Prune any tree limbs, branches, and shrubs that may cause problems.

Exterior Walls and Foundation: Check the siding for loose, damaged, or missing pieces. It’s important to maintain your siding because it’s the protective layer on your home and helps to keep you safe and cozy inside.  Repair as needed or call a local handyman to help.

Again, make sure nothing is touching the exterior of your house. Cut back any trees or shrubs that may cause problems. 

Also check the paint, how’s it looking? Most importantly check the caulking on the siding and at all windows and doors. Caulking should be scraped and re-applied annually. If this is something you don’t want to do yourself, give Perfect Image Painting a call at 253-272-0292.

Check the landscaping and grading around the foundation of your house. It’s very important that the grading is such that water drains and runs AWAY from your foundation. You don’t want water pooling up or draining into your basement or under your foundation. That is the quickest way to erode the foundation which can lead to uneven settling and even more serious problems down the road.

Pests: Check your eaves for bee’s nests. Check around the exterior of your home and in your yard for small rodents and ants. Spot treat as needed. Your local hardware store can be a helpful resource but you might also consider a service. My home abuts an undeveloped hillside so a lot of wildlife and creepy critters traipse up the hillside and try to make their way into my home. I don’t mind the cute bunnies or even the deer that nibble on my blooms but I do mind the mice and ants. It was pretty bad when I first moved in and then I started using Terminex. They come out quarterly and just take care of everything, and I haven’t had a problem since.

Good luck with your summer maintenance and enjoy the beautiful weather. -Wendy

Rambler in Spanaway, Lowest Price of the Year

All Natural Weed Killers

I’ve been working on my lawn and in my yard quite a bit lately and this year I am really trying to use less harsh chemicals. It’s better for the environment, my little critters, and my wallet.

I’ve had really good luck with a homemade vinegar solution as a weed killer. I use it heavily on those nasty little weeds in my beauty bark and sparingly directly on the weeds in my lawn (be careful here though, apply directly to the weed itself and watch out on windy days, you don’t want the overspray to get on the lawn grass because it will kill the grass too).

This solution has been most effective between my walkway pavers and driveway cracks where those pesky weeds sprout up and I can’t get my tools in between to pop out the weeds. On the walkway, you can literally dump the solution on and around the pavers and let it drain off into the cracks and crevices where the weeds like to grow.

The acidity in the vinegar kills the weeds by drying them out so it is optimum to let the sun help the process along. It’s best to apply when you know it will be sunny for a day or two. Also, the vinegar you get at the grocery store is for cooking so the acetic acid levels are pretty low. I have had to reapply my solution several times to really kill the weeds entirely.

Salt is also a great desiccant (draws out moisture). Some homemade weed killer recipes include salt but I prefer to omit that. It does leave behind a residue and I think it is too harsh on the soil plus you risk burning nearby plants or grass when salt is added to the solution. It’s really up to you and depends are where you are going to use it. I would certainly add this if I were going to spray weeds growing up through some lava rock or a gravel driveway.

Adding dish soap (not laundry soap, dishwasher soap, or hand soap) helps with absorption. With the soap, the solution stays on the leaves instead of just running right off.

Here’s my recipe:

½ gallon vinegar

2 tablespoons of salt (if you like)

1 ounce of dish soap (that’s about two good squirts)

If you give it a try, let me know how it works for you. Good luck! -Wendy

Open Floor Plan at Rainier Vista

We’ve revised this spacious floor plan especially for Covington. The tall ceilings and the open Kitchen, Nook, and Family Room really make this an ideal home for a busy family. The Formal Living and Dining rooms add that elegant touch. With the downstairs Den and upstairs Bonus Room there is plenty of space. This floor plan is loaded!

Lot 55 at Rainier Vista is the only one of its kind and it’s ready for move in at the first of August. Call Christine at 425-466-9671 for a tour and put your offer in before it’s gone.

Happy 4th of July

Times are a little tough right now but we still live in the best country in the world.  I hope you all get to pursue your happiness this long holiday weekend! 

 -Wendy

 

 

New Kitchen Design for Rainier Vista

We just completed our newest home at Rainier Vista, the Cirino on Lot 49. It’s an 1815 SF 2-story with 3 bedrooms (including an awesome master suite) and 2 1/2 bath. The downstairs powder room also got a bit of a revamp with the floating lav and granite tile. This house is decked out! 

Our designer did a great job furnishing the home to showcase how functional and well-designed this house really is. Check out this cool video tour.

-Wendy

Model Home New Kitchen Design

We’ve redesigned our Model Home Kitchen! It looks great with the dark granite counter tops, the ebony cabinets, and the stainless steel applainces!

Check out pics of the rest of the house at our Facebook page, in the 1496SF photo album.

-Wendy