If you’re anything like us you probably give the interior of your home all the love and attention it needs – and then some. But what about your home’s exterior? Well, with a little extra TLC these exterior updates for your home will not only brighten up the outside of your house but save you some money, too.
From cleaning your guttering to pressure washing your wall, following these simple cleaning tips to upkeep your property maintenance could save you thousands of dollars in the long run. You won’t have to dig into your pockets to carry them out either – most of these tasks won’t require a professional so you can do them yourself with tools you probably already own.
So, if you’re looking for a Sunday job to keep you busy in the backyard, we’ve compiled a list of seven simple tips and how much each save you. Follow these steps to give your house’s exterior the upgrade it deserves while also saving yourself some pennies in the process! win win.
How to save money by cleaning your home’s exterior
The team at Insulation Express (opens in new tab) have put together a handy guide to keep expensive costs at bay. And for the most part, you’ll only need the help of some tools you likely have lying around the home.
1. Clean debris from your guttering
It’s a job we all put off until it’s too late and the damage is already done. Clearing your guttering is one of those tasks that seems like a mammoth mission purely because it requires digging the ladder out of the garage (unless you have one of those nifty telescopic tools in which case, you have no excuse!).
But a build up of debris in your guttering not only has the potential to cause damp problems as water seeps into your internal walls, but a large gathering of moss, leaves and other debris can cause your guttering to break completely.
You might think plastic guttering and downspouts come cheap, but an average gutter replacement can cost anywhere between $800 and $4,000 depending on the size of your home. If the structure of your home is damp, you can expect another hefty bill: to damp-proof your internal walls you’re looking at $200 to upwards of $2,000 per wall.
Ideally you should clean your gutters twice a year to avoid these expensive maintenance costs. If you have lots of foliage surrounding your home you might want to consider cleaning them more often. Save yourself a big bill next year and get up that ladder!
This super-affordable angled gutter cleaner with a flush on Amazon (opens in new tab) makes the job even easier.
2. Pressure wash the exterior of your house
Pressure washing paving will keep your courtyard looking clean, but you might want to consider cleaning your house while you’re at it.
Depending on your property, it is recommended that you clean the exterior of your home every two years to help prevent moss and algae growing which will protect the siding and paintwork. By doing so, you’ll avoid the need to paint the exterior of your home in years to come, a job which can rack up huge costs.
If moss is left to grow, it can spread up the side of walls and in severe cases, even cause the roof to lose its structural integrity. You don’t need us to tell you that that will come with an even bigger price tag. If you have a pressure washer, it’s certainly worth giving your walls some attention.
This clever roller moss rake on Amazon (opens in new tab) will also do the job of getting rid of plant growth on paving. It won’t leave the stone underneath as shiny and new a pressure washer, but it’s a much more affordable start.
3. Check your insulation
Those of us living in warmer climates might feel less inclined to check our insulation, but as well as retaining heat during winter, good quality insulation can also help to keep your home cool in the summer months to help make your home more sustainable. And patching up your insulation or Replacing it yourself could save you thousands.
As energy bills are on the up, it is worth inspecting your attic insulation between seasons to ensure your insulation material is up to standard and that there are no gaps, especially up in the attic. Depending on the type of insulation you require, a professional installation in the attic can cost anywhere upwards of $500 for homes with a smaller square footage, to $4,000 for bigger homes.
4. Remove weeds from your paving
Weeding can be a tedious task, but it’s a simple exterior cleaning job that can save you a surprising amount of money.
Neglecting the weeds and moss on your outdoor paving or driveway can cause the roots of the weeds to grow underneath the paving stones. The strength of these little plants shouldn’t be underestimated. If left to grow overtime, their roots can result in unsightly crack and new pavers could cost you between $10 and $30 per square foot.
If there are only a few weeds causing problems, remove them by hand, but use a liquid weed killer on stubborn weeds as they’re likely to regrow otherwise. Alternatively, you can clean your paving with a pressure washer to uproot those pesky plants.
5. Wipe down your window and door frames
This is the kind of exterior cleaning task we’re all likely to overlook. But while cleaning your exterior window frames might not be the easiest job if you have a multi-storey home, it’s certainly worth it in the long run.
The dirt and grime build-up from elements can cause premature fading and discolouration on your exterior door frames and windows. All you need to prevent that from happening is a damp cloth to wipe down the frames (and of course a ladder, if you’re house has multiple levels).
Older wooden frames on exterior frames and doors may require a full repaint if not cleaned regularly, which could cost your several hundred dollars depending on the size of your home. Keep them in check with regular cleaning and a full repaint won’t be needed as regularly.
Our editor Pip Rich swears by this magnetic double sided window cleaner from Amazon, (opens in new tab) which is great for windows on high floors if you live in an apartment.
6. Check your roof tiles
Build-up of moss and other debris if the most common issue on a roof, while extreme wind and storms can also damage roof tiles or cause them to fall off completely.
Be sure to check on your tiles after any extreme weather, and check them every year if you can. Repairing multiple tiles will get costly, and damaged tiles can cause damp to penetrate into your home. Keep on top of damaged roofing to save an expensive and time-consuming job later since an entire roof replacement will likely to set you back tens of thousands of dollars.
7. Clean your decking
Decking is beautiful when it’s clean, but while dirty decking can be afternoon on the eyes, that factor is the least of your worries. Blackening of decking material can happen after a wet winter when fungus reacts with the wood, potentially causing it to rot.
You can save yourself the $150 fee (or more) of having your decking professionally cleaned by using a broom and a solution of water and fit-for-purpose decking cleaner to keep your decking looking fresh and minimizing the chance of rot.
This particular Livingetc editor-approved decking brush from Amazon (opens in new tab) comes highly recommended by our team, its stiff bristles doing all the hard work.