For this week’s LLL, Alayna sits down with Daniel Felt, Founder and CEO of Kura Home to discuss home maintenance, changes in the housing market, and what home maintenance professionals wish first-time homebuyers knew.
The biggest changes have come from servicing new building codes. For example, as homes become more efficient, they’re buttoned up a little tighter than they used to be. It’s harder and harder for fresh air to get in.
Basic appliance inspection and maintenance is big. From a home maintenance perspective, it’s particularly unfortunate that people have needed to bypass inspection to get their offers accepted, since you ought to know what it’s going to take to maintain a home before you purchase it. The bottom line is knowing what it’s going to cost to maintain the home. Don’t bypass inspection.
Astronomical, unexpected costs. You need to know not only what a property is going to cost, but what it’s going to cost to maintain. There might be foundations issues, or deck installed without permit that isn’t built to code. The cost of repairing those issues could be enormous.
Little things, especially cosmetic upgrades and repairs are great for DIYers. This is the era of YouTube and online tutorials, and those are great for small things. Sheet rock, for example, is perfectly fine to do by yourself. But any time you have to pull a permit, you should consult a pro. Daniel, himself a millennial, knows how tempting it can be for his generation to pull up a YouTube video and think they’ve got x, y, or z project totally covered. But the reality is that some things really do need a home maintenance professional to handle.
Surprisingly enough, homes are pretty similar throughout the entire country. There are a few regional things—swamp coolers vs AC units, for example—that make a difference, but for the most part, a water heater is a water heater. Home maintenance is often similar, region to region.
It comes down to systems, processes, and documentation. Daniel’s goal as a business owner is to never answer the same question twice, although that doesn’t always happen. You can’t clone yourself, so you have to make sure your training documentation and processes are on point.
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