There are home maintenance skills that every teen should learn before owning or renting their own property. It is every parents hope that our kids will get to buy their own homes and raise their families there. We can do everything necessary to make sure they reach this goal by teaching them work ethic, how to manage their finances, and help them find scholarships. So what happens when they do buy their first home? Will they know how to maintain it?
5 Home Maintenance Skills to Teach Before Your Teen Leaves Home
Too many young people step into home ownership with no idea what goes in to owning and maintaining a home. With the proper foundation, when they go to buy a home, they will have a more realistic idea of home ownership than 99% of their peers. Having the proper maintenance skills will pay off for them in the end. Besides, there’s the extra perk of having some handy kids around!
Home Maintenance Skill #1: Basic Plumbing
Plumber’s can charge a pretty penny for their work and they should! It’s not the most pleasant job sifting through other people’s drains and unclogging their toilets. If you can do this work yourself, you could easily save a few hundred bucks. Teaching your kids some basic home plumbing can help them dodge the expense of hiring a plumber.
If the sink won’t drain properly, teach them how to take apart the plumbing underneath and use a drain pipe-cleaner to clean it all out. In some cases, the piping will need to be replaced by new pipes, and you can teach your teenager this skill as well.
If a toilet is clogged and requires more than plunging, you can teach your kids how to use a drain snake and work out the clog. Other basic plumbing skills include:
- replacing a faucet or shower head
- cleaning out a sump pump
- turning the water main on and off when needed
Of course there will always be times when the best option is to call a professional. But if we can teach our teenagers how to do as much as they can on their own, they’ll be better prepared and save a lot of money over the years by knowing some basic plumbing skills.
Home Maintenance Skill #2: Sealing or Replacing Siding
Few things do more damage to a house than moisture where moisture isn’t meant to be. Siding helps seal out the moisture, but cracks in the siding can cause the wood to rot. For a temporary fix, you can teach your kids how to use a caulking gun to seal small gaps in the siding. For a long term solution, you’ll want to replace the damaged pieces of siding with new parts.
Home Maintanence Skill #3: Changing Furnace and Air Conditioning Filters
Air conditioners and furnaces are one of the more expensive home appliances, so keeping the ones you have in pristine condition is essential. A simple filter change can extend the life of your appliances and also keep the air in your home fresh and clean. This is a job that is simple enough for anyone to learn, so why call in a professional when you can do it yourself (and teach your kids at the same time)?
Home Maintenance Skill #4: Cleaning the Gutters
Your gutters are designed to gather rain water and direct it away from the foundation of your home, so keeping them clean is crucial for keeping your home in top notch condition. When you don’t keep your gutters clean, the water can damage your roof and the exterior of your home. All you really need to clean the gutters is a ladder and , preferably, a pair of gloves.
Anyone old enough to safely climb a ladder can help clean out the gutters, and keeping them clean could potentially save you thousands in home repairs. If your teenagers understand the reasons for keeping gutters clean and know how to do it, they will be far better prepared to own and keep their home.
Home Maintenance Skill #5: Basic Landscaping
Whether it’s keeping the lawn mowed and the hedges trimmed or laying bricks and planting flowers, basic landscaping activities are home maintenance skills teens should learn. The way the outside of a home looks can influence its resale value. It is the first impression people have of your home when they first come over. Teaching your teens basic landscaping skills is important for their future home ownership.
The Future Is Bright
One of the reasons the up and coming generation is not prepared for milestones such as owning and maintaining a home is they are not being taught the things they need to thrive. Their heads are filled with knowledge and ideologies that are not necessarily conducive to life in the 2020s. We want to teach our kids core academics, of course.
We want them to understand history and know how to write, and we want them to know math and science. But we also want to give them practical skills that they can take with them and apply in their adult lives. If kids are taught skills that will actually play a role in bettering their lives, they will feel more confident and optimistic about their futures.