The home buying process doesn’t exactly end at closing, it simply transitions into the home owning process! Depending on where you live and how extreme the winter season is, there are useful tips and tricks to help protect your biggest and newest investment—your home.
West Michigan Buyers who purchase in the late fall are often taken by surprise when the weather abruptly transitions to winter, even though we know it is coming! There are a couple of small tips that can better help you take care of your home this winter. These tips will not only save you money, but also protect your home against problems that can arise from particularly cold winters… or the occasional polar vortex.
TURN OFF WATER TO OUTSIDE PIPES
If you have spickets outside your house that you use to hose in the summer, it may be a good idea to turn them off from the inside if you know you aren’t going to use them for a few months. This is especially crucial in older homes, but it only takes seconds and can prevent unnecessary freezing. Also, while you’re at it, make sure you take the hoses inside!
CHECK AND PREPARE YOUR FURNACE
It is a great time to start testing to make sure your furnace is working properly, and don’t forget to change your furnace filters regularly. Even if your furnace seems to be working great, it never hurts to have it serviced and tuned up as winter approaches. Better safe than frozen!
CLEAN THE GUTTERS
This is the chore that nobody enjoys, but it can save you big money in the long run! In the winter, when water and snow collect in the gutters, the frozen mixture can weigh them down and even cause ice dams on the roof, potentially damaging your roof. If you aren’t confident in your gutter cleaning skills or have gutters too high to reach, hire a professional!
CHECK YOUR WINDOWS FOR DRAFTS
In older homes especially, windows can often be the source of drafts which can not only make your home colder but cause your heat to run more often. If you want to keep your bills lower, check the weather stripping around your windows (and doors). A few simple temporary fixes for the season are self-sticking weather stripping or plastic window treatments.
FILL THE CRACKS
If you have a sidewalk or driveway, it is a good idea to look around for small cracks. During the winter, water and ice can accumulate in even the smallest cracks which causes them to expand and contract, worsening the cracks. Filling small cracks early will prevent having to replace areas of concrete in the future and reduce wear and tear on your tires!
The home buying process doesn’t exactly end at closing, it simply transitions into the home owning process!