Exterior Walls and Foundations
- The exterior walls and foundations should be checked for loose and deteriorating mortar, cracks or holes. The exterior walls should be watertight and well maintained.
- All cracks and holes should be sealed to prevent water from entering the building, and to keep rats and insects out. It is much easier to repair a wall than to rebuild it. Exterior grade must slope away from the foundation to provide proper drainage.
- All exterior surfaces in need of paint or other protective coatings should be painted to prevent deterioration from the weather.
Exterior Doors and Windows
- Windows and doors should be both watertight and weathertight. They should be easily opened and have sound hardware. Window frames should be checked for caulking and door frames should be checked for weather-stripping. All broken windows panes should be replaced.
- All surfaces that require painting should be painted to protect them from the weather.
Porches and Steps
- Homeowners should check for structural soundness of flooring, steps, handrails, and foundation.
Gutters and Downspouts
- Gutters are important because they collect the water from the roof and channel it to the downspout.
- Water can be a destructive force, and if not effectively removed, can cause dampness in the interior walls, as well as the deterioration of the mortar in exterior walls and foundations. This deterioration can result in cracks, and in extreme cases of erosion, collapse.
- Gutters should be kept free from leaves and other debris that can prevent water from flowing to the downspouts. The gutters should be free from rust, holes and leaks, and should be firmly affixed to the building.
- Downspouts should be watertight and free from all obstruction, and must discharge water five feet away from the foundation.
- All garages and accessory structures must be maintained. The roof, walls, and foundation must be waterproof, weathertight, and structurally sound. All surfaces in need of paint or other protective coating should be painted to prevent deterioration from the elements. The structure should be free of rodent and vermin infestation.