Home Home Improvement First-Year Home Maintenance Checklist

First-Year Home Maintenance Checklist

by Kimberly Fischer
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Regular home maintenance is a must to keep your house in good working order, and spring’s warmer weather is the perfect time for those jobs you’ve been putting off over winter. For the first time home buyer our checklist might look a bit daunting, but you don’t have to cram in all these chores over one weekend. We’ve broken them up into bite-sized chunks, so you can tackle each section as your mood and energy dictates!

Keep Your Home’s Exterior In Tip Top Shape

As your most expensive asset, your home deserves a little TLC, especially after a long, cold winter. Some exterior cleaning and a few DIY touch ups will ensure you have the best-looking house on the block. Make sure you start at the top of the house and work your way down, so you don’t dirty your clean windows.

  • Check roof for loose tiles
  • Clear the gutters and downpipes of leaves
  • Use a pressure washer to clean off mud, dirt and grime
  • Replace damaged window and door seals (if needed)
  • Inspect exterior paint and touch up (if needed)
  • Clean and repair window screens
  • Clean and seal deck (if needed)
  • Repair driveway (if needed)
  • Clean sidewalks and patio
  • Clean the BBQ
  • Clean outdoor furniture and cushions (or replace)
  • Paint letterbox (or replace)

How To Spruce Up Your Yard

Spring is peak time for yard clean up and any yard maintenance you do right now will see you reap the benefits come summer. While you can hire a professional, most yard maintenance jobs are simple enough to do. Besides, being outside in the fresh air is good for your mental and physical health. Yard maintenance doesn’t have to be hard, there’s plenty of affordable (and dare we say fun) equipment you can purchase to beautify your yard without spending hours in it.

  • Rake up leaves and other yard debris
  • Cut off broken branches
  • Weed and aerate flower beds
  • Add mulch
  • Plant flowers
  • Water and fertilize your lawn
  • Mow the lawn (when its grown high enough)
  • Spot seed any bare patches of lawn
  • Prune trees and shrubs
  • Inspect fence and fix if broken

Make Your Home Smell Fresh and Clean

When you’ve been hunkering down for the winter, you can start feeling like you’re living in a cave. Even if you don’t notice any odors, your guests might! Get rid of musty and stinky smells with a little indoor spring cleaning. Believe us these will really make your home smell fresh and clean!

  • Scrub kitchen floor to remove caked on food
  • Clean and air pet beds
  • Clean kitchen exhaust hood and filter
  • Check sinks and toilets for leaks or blocks
  • Clean all drains
  • Clean the garbage disposal
  • Empty food trap in dishwasher
  • Clean the trash can
  • Open doors and windows to air rooms

Extra Spring Cleaning Tasks

Once you’ve tackled the source of any foul odors it’s time to add a few extra spring-cleaning jobs to your list and really make your home sparkle. Why stop now, right? Spring cleaning is well known for its health and mood boosting benefits. While you might clean regularly, after winter, a deep clean can really help boost your productivity and energy levels. Again, it’s a good idea to start at the top of the house and work your way down; and dust first, then vacuum.


  • Strip and wash bedding
  • Dry clean comforters
  • Deep clean mattress
  • Declutter wardrobe
  • Dust light fittings
  • Clean windows and sills
  • Wipe walls and ceilings
  • Dust baseboards
  • Vacuum or mop floors


  • Declutter and clean drawers, cabinets and pantry
  • Clean toaster
  • Clean microwave
  • Clean kettle
  • Wipe down inside and outside of dishwasher
  • Clean fruit bowl/basket
  • Wipe down counters and backsplash
  • Wipe down stools, table and chairs, and islands
  • Clean cooktop and oven
  • Throw out food past use by date
  • Clean and restock fridge
  • Dust and wipe down light fixtures
  • Wipe walls and ceilings
  • Sweep floor
  • Mop floor


  • Declutter the vanity
  • Wipe shelves and drawers
  • Throw out trash
  • Disinfect and scrub toilet
  • Scrub shower and bath
  • Wash shower curtain
  • Remove mold
  • Regrout tiles
  • Clean fans and vents
  • Clean baseboards, windows & window sills
  • Wipe walls and ceilings
  • Polish mirrors
  • Sweep or vacuum floor
  • Mop the floor

Living Room

  • Clean windows
  • Steam clean carpets
  • Vacuum rugs
  • Move furniture and vacuum underneath
  • Beat cushions outside to remove dust
  • Dust books and shelves
  • Dust hard to reach places
  • Wax wooden furniture
  • Dust and clean blinds
  • Polish door and window handles
  • Wash or dry clean curtains
  • Wipe walls and ceilings

How to Keep Your Home Safe

As a first-time home buyer, home maintenance may be on your radar, but home safety may not be. Ensuring your house is safe and secure for all occupants is really important and neglecting this can have serious consequences. We’re not just talking about burglars, uninvited guests, such as termites and rodents, can play havoc with your home’s structure, electrical wiring and carry disease.

  • Reinforce your front door
  • Install an outdoor motion detector LED light
  • Install security latches on windows
  • Install fresh batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Test and dust all detectors
  • Check fire extinguishers
  • Clean clothes dryer vents (lint is a fire hazard)
  • Inspect the roof for storm damage
  • Inspect for activity by termites, ants, rodents, and other pests

Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Last but not least, while you’re in home maintenance mode you should think about making your house more energy efficient. For a first-time home buyer, this is key if you’ve had a nasty shock with sky high power bills during winter. Not only will an energy efficient home save you money, it will feel more comfortable and reduce your contribution to global warming.

  • Clean and service your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system
  • Change the filters in your heating and air conditioning system
  • Dust refrigerator coils
  • Clean the ceiling fan
  • Change light bulbs to LEDs
  • Replace old appliances
  • Get insulation curtains
  • Seal any air leaks around your home

Need some help around the house?

Rex has you covered. Get in touch to learn about year-round home maintenance services available through REX Home Services.

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