I’m pleased to be working with HomeAdvisor.com as part of their Blog Ambassador program. (A partnered post.) For it, and as Fall approaches, I was challenged to fill out their Fall-oriented Home Report Card. A quiz – a series of ten questions (adjusted by season) that test your knowledge and your readiness, in this case, for Fall.
Actually pretty fun, and painless, it took only about five minutes to complete. On the results screen (at the end of the quiz), I was given my grade, my answers (right or wrong) and “What Home Advisor Recommends” for “Raising That Grade.” All brilliantly framed, I’d say.
In some cases, options appear and allow you to take action through the site. Price it Out takes you to HomeAdvisor’s famous Cost Guide – an excellent resource (deep) linking here directly from and to a question’s appropriate topical area. The Get it Done option, when clicked, matches you (with contractors) specializing in the appropriate area of service, right in your local service area.
And while I don’t know if this post ends up being a sorta Cliff Notes, a study guide or a cheat sheet, I’ll still let it fly – I’ll list out the questions, but maybe just won’t give you my answers. In a way, yes – I too am issuing a challenge. Ha! Maybe you can do better than me. Oh! and you know of course I’m gonna save my final grade for the end of this post.
Fall Home Maintenance :: The Home Report Card Quiz (Sample Questions)
* What simple task can help you start to make your home more energy efficient?
Home Advisor Recommends: Changing out your light bulbs to CFLs or LEDs, watering your lawn less, or keeping doors & windows shut are great ways to keep your home energy efficient. However, getting an energy audit will tell you exactly what areas of your home need an upgrade.
* What is the average cost of an energy audit?
(Remember – not all energy audits are created equally. Hint: See our post, “Energy Audits :: What’s in a Price?“)
Home Advisor Recommends: Is this inline with your budget? If you’re having trouble figuring out how much you should pay for your project, HomeAdvisor’s Cost Guide will help you get a better idea about how much should expect to pay.
* How far away from the foundation of your home is your downspout placed?
(A trick question I think.)
Home Advisor Recommends: If you don’t know off the top of your head how far your downspout is from your house, it’s time to check. There are easy fixes such as a splash block or a downspout extender that can make a huge difference. Keeping your gutters cleaned and unclogged will also keep water from pooling around the foundation of your home.
* According to the U.S. Government’s Energy Star program, what can you do to save $150-$180 per year in energy costs?
Home Advisor Recommends: Can you say savvy homeowner? Don’t you just love those lower utility bills? (Obviously I got this one right. Ha!)
* Winter is on its way. Which of the following should you do to your lawn before it gets too cold?
Home Advisor Recommends: We bet you have the best lawn on the block! (Why, thank you! And that definitely really isn’t true, but got another right answer. Okay we have written about it before.)
* Regular fall maintenance includes which of the following? Sprinkles blown out, trees and scrubs trimmed, air conditioner cleaned.
(I’m thinking another trick question.)
Home Advisor Recommends: Congrats, you know how to prepare your home for the winter. Fall maintenance tasks can save you from spending thousands on replacing broken pipes on damaged AC Units.
* Which room do 38% of couples argue the most?
(Thinking that number has got to be low. Hint: See our post entitled, “Battle of the Sexes“.)
Home Advisor Recommends: Hopefully it was a guess and not based on experience! Changing the color scheme or adding in more light to the kitchen may help make a kitchen a place of peace not war.
* What month do most people start their fall home maintenance projects?
Home Advisor Recommends: It’s a smart idea to get started on fall home maintenance projects once the whirlwind of back to school is over and you have time to budget and plan.
* Cleaning your gutters and downspouts in the fall can prevent water damage to your foundation, costing on average?
Home Advisor Recommends: No one wants to spend $3,800 on a new foundation when all you needed to spend is on average $181 for a gutter and downspout cleaning. (See our related article: How to Clean Your Gutters.)
* What’s the number one reason people don’t complete fall maintenance tasks?
Home Advisor Recommends: Getting educated on home maintenance tasks will save you money and headaches in future. To get started, HomeAdvisor recommends getting your HVAC systems inspected, flushing out your sprinkler system and cleaning dead limbs from your yard.
Enjoy and maybe it helps you, well, prepare. And there it is, yep, a big fat B … Teacher’s Pet … Booyah! and hopefully you can do better. Good luck.
For a more comprehensive list of Fall Maintenance Tasks, see our article: A Kick Ass Fall Maintenance Checklist.
The follow up to this post is here – How to Winterize a Home. Cheers. ~jb
BTDubs: Okay (My) Answers (*ahem* Look Close. ;~) )
Note: Highlight the page to the right my answers for the correct answer. Enjoy! ~jb
1. Use Less Water at Home. (Wrong) Get an Energy Audit (Right)
2. $147-$311 (Right)
3. It needs to direct the water away from the foundation of my home. (Right)
4. Using a programmable thermostat. (Right)
5. All of the above (Seed, Aerate, Fertilize) (Right)
6. All of the above (Sprinklers Blown Out, Trees and Shrubs Trimmed, AC Checked) (Right)
7. Kitchen (Right)
8. October (idk)
9. $6,500. (Wrong) $3800 (Right)
10. Don’t know which task to do. (Right)