Autumn is the time to start breaking out the sweaters, warm soups, and hot drinks. For homeowners, it’s also prime time for fall maintenance and to get your home winter-ready. Fall can bring a lot of rain and wind to Georgia and a lot of ice and snow to the Atlanta area. So, start preparing your home for the cold weather with these fall tips.
The gutters & downspouts
Before these important fixtures get clogged with leaves, debris, and possibly become iced over, make sure to:
1. Clean out your gutters – Seriously. Clean your gutters and downspouts – otherwise, water could accumulate and damage the siding of your house. Or the roof.
2. Check that the gutters are not drooping.
3. Know where to send the water. You don’t want the water to damage your foundation, so make sure it’s going away from the base of the house.
Windows & Doors
Windows and doors might add a nice aesthetic to both the inside and outside of your home, but they keep unwanted pests and debris out. So, before or during the Fall:
4. Repair any cracks or holes in your doors and windows
5. Make sure the area around the doors and windows is properly sealed. – This can also you keep in heat, which can help you save money on your energy bill.
Your home’s exterior
Your home’s job, after all, is to protect you from the elements. Make sure that the outside of your home can do that by:
6. Scheduling a roof inspection – Fall can be the perfect time to schedule an inspection, right before potential hail and snow damage weighs and wears on your roof. Choose a reputable roofing company who will identify and report any potential problems you may see in the near future.
7. Visually inspecting the outside of your house. – Do a check of the outside of your house and look at the siding and foundation. And don’t forget the roof.
8. Sealing up any gaps. – Winter is an especially hard time for pests too. So, there will be a lot more of them trying to make a cozy home inside your humble abode. Don’t give them the chance! Close any holes that you see and block any potential entrances that bugs or rodents might use, big or small.
9. Check your sidewalk and stairs. You don’t want anyone taking a nosedive on a slippery sidewalk or staircase. Make sure your railings are nice and strong and that your driveway is in good repair.
10. Keep an eye on the trees. Make sure your trees are all staying sturdy and healthy.
Depending on your preference, you may or may not get a lot of use out of your yard in the winter. However, the land is still important to maintain. Before they become larger issues, check on these items in your lawn:
11. Long tree limbs – Trim down shrub and tree limbs that are too close to power lines or that could possibly fall on your roof or a neighbor’s property. Branches are no match for heavy winds, rains, and the weight of snow.
12. Your sprinkler systems, hoses, and faucets – Chances are, you won’t be watering your lawn much in the winter. If you don’t, drain and store your hoses. Also, don’t forget to turn off outdoor faucets.
13. Trim trees and shrubs. This can help them stay nice and strong.
14. Fallen leaves – Even if you jump in them afterward, rake up your leaves. If you leave them on the ground, it could make it harder for your lawn to bounce back.
15. Keep branches back. When you spruce up your bushes and shrubs, make sure the branches are away from the house. Otherwise they could make water drip onto the house.
Your home’s interior
Making the inside of your home comfy and cozy means more than just turning your central air system from cool to heat. These items will need your attention now so that you can be safe and warm later:
16. Having your chimney inspected – Before you light the first fire of the season, have a professional come and inspect the system before winter weather officially comes.
17. Having your HVAC/furnace inspected – The same goes for furnace inspections. Make sure your heat works before the cold weather hits, and have a professional inspect your furnace.
18. Cleaning your dryer – This is more than just emptying the lint trap. Clean out your dryer vents before the greater amount of static electricity makes its shocking appearance known – in the form of a house fire.
19. Checking your ducts – If it’s been a while since you’ve looked at your ducts, you might want to get those cleaned.
20. Making sure your pipes are well-insulated – Make sure that your pipes are still well insulated to avoid them freezing over.
21. Knowing where your main water line is and how to turn it off. – It can be useful if your pipes do freeze and you need to turn it off.
22. Doing a check on your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors.
23. Stock up on winter supplies. You’ll also want to make sure you have all the winter supplies you’ll need to get through the season – for example, you might want to check your home emergency kit.
It’s also never a bad season to review your home insurance policy and shop around. However, we know that it can be a hassle to shop for homeowners insurance. That’s why our agents are here to help. We’ve formed relationships with the best carriers in the business so we can help you find great rates and coverage. Plus, we shop for you year after year to make sure you get the best prices! To start getting quotes from our insurance professionals, just give us a call, fill out our online form, or LiveChat with us today!