GUIDE: Advice on home improvement, maintenance projects from Alpharetta business owner

Chet Touton, owner of Mr. Handyman, a home repair service in the Alpharetta area, offered his advice on some of the key maintenance areas and projects homeowners need to focus on this time of year. (Community Impact staff)
Chet Touton, owner of Mr. Handyman, a home repair service in the Alpharetta area, offered his advice on some of the key maintenance areas and projects homeowners need to focus on this time of year. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

Chet Touton, owner of Mr. Handyman, a home repair service in the Alpharetta area, offered his advice on some of the key maintenance areas and projects homeowners need to focus on this time of year. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

Spring is winding down, and summer is taking its place. Despite the coronavirus pandemic, homeowners are tackling maintenance and improvement projects inside and outside the home. Chet Touton, owner of Mr. Handyman, a home repair service in the Alpharetta area, offered his advice on some of the key maintenance areas and projects homeowners need to focus on this time of year.

When should a homeowner tackle a project on their own rather than call a professional?

The basic rule of thumb is if you do not feel like you can do the repair safely, call a professional. Painting is typically something homeowners can take on themselves and can have a big impact. When you are dealing with electrical, plumbing or ladder work, it may be best to call a professional.

Any general advice or anything you would like to communicate to the average homeowner?

If you put off maintenance on your home, it never gets better and usually gets worse. The owner doing a look over of the home, inside and out, can identify issues before they turn into something worse—it is not hard to do, and a professional handyman service can guide you through it.


How has your business been different since the coronavirus pandemic hit?

We of course have changed our procedures to follow the new guidelines. We also now do touchless interaction and payment for our customers. Customers, however, still need to take care of maintenance on their homes, and we continue to do that for them while following the guidelines for both the customer and technician's safety.



Top improvement trends this year


1. Replace a new vanity in a bathroom

Touton said this is a trend he is seeing this year in home improvement projects.

2. Paint a room

Touton said painting is generally something homeowners can tackle on their own if they feel comfortable doing so.



Inside maintenance


Touton said carbon monoxide/smoke detectors should be checked regularly and replaced every 10 years, even if the batteries are good.

"We recommend the new 10-year sealed battery units so you do not have to change the batteries every year," he said.

Touton recommends checking under sinks and around toilets to check for leaks.

"Better to catch these leaks early," he said.



Outside maintenance


Touton recommends homeowners walk the outside of the house, looking for common problems such as peeling paint, wood rot on door jambs, windows and around the soffits.

"We also see a lot of wood rot on the outside of the home that has exposed itself over the winter," Touton said.

Clean gutters that are overflowing and check for any needed repairs.

"Clogged gutters are always common and will lead to bigger problems," he said.



Gardening


Another popular area of home improvement has been making a garden at home. Take a look at gardening and planting tips from The Old Farmer's Almanac.

Kara McIntyre - Krista Wadsworth



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