The word "upkeep" may well have had its origin in the high-altitude art of keeping gutters from spontaneously turning into downspouts. If they aren't kept up, they fall down, which is what happened to the rental next door. People don't naturally turn their attention to the condition of their gutters, but thanks to the inspiration of my neighboring landlord's neglect, I was moved to take action on my own.
Most likely what happened next door was that autumn's first falling leaves clogged the gutter, rainwater filled them up, and the resultant weight pulled the old nails loose from the fascia board. So I've been spending some quality time replacing every other old nail on my gutters with a screw, and adding gutter guards so that I don't have to keep climbing up there to clear them of leaves. Where would we be without inspiration, whatever its source?