Without ongoing maintenance in the home, a property could become derelict in just a few short years. Keeping the weather out can be a challenge, but done right, you can extend the life of your home and live more comfortably throughout the year.

There are so many ways to prep your home better, season after season. From big upgrades to small maintenance tips, this is how to get your house ready for winter:

Have Your Systems Cleaned and Maintained

Your HVAC, heating, water heater, washing machine, fridge – everything needs to be cleaned, checked, and maintained. This is one of the easiest and most budget-friendly options in the list and one that you need to commit to regularly. Cleaning out filters is a very easy job that many people just forget about, but this can become a health and safety hazard and can also damage these systems. Regularly maintaining or having professionals come in to do the job for you will keep your heating and other systems up and running for longer.

Upgrade Your Windows

There will come a time where you will want, and even need, to upgrade your windows. If your property is old and the windows are exceptionally drafty, then this is a no-brainer, but there are some instances where you may need new windows and now even be aware. This is because double-glazing is more than two planes of glass. Between these panes is an inert gas. Over time this gas tends to leak out. For this reason, the lifespan of double-glazed windows is between 20 and 35 years. If your home is older than that, and you notice it’s cold, foggy, or wet on or around your windows, this is a sure sign it’s time to replace them.

Clear Out the Gutters and Maintain the Roof

If you live in an area that experiences freezing temperatures, you need to ensure that your gutters are clear of debris like fallen leaves and inspect your roof before the start of the season. A big roof repair can cost as much as $30,000, depending on the damage and the work needed. If you spot any of the early signs of roof damage, like roof leaks, growth (like moss) on your roof, cracks, rot, or your upper floors are freezing and take a lot to heat, then you cannot hesitate. A loan for home improvement can potentially help you coversome of the costs of an emergency roof repair so that you can get the work done before the first snow hits.

You don’t want to introduce a damaged roof to another season of freezing temperatures and snow. This could cause your roof to collapse, and at the very least, will balloon your heating costs.

Winterize Your Garden

Finally, you will want to winterize your garden. At the very least, you will want to shut off your outdoor water, as the pipes outside can freeze and expand, bursting them and costing you a lot to fix or replace. If you have a water feature like a pool or a pond, this will need to be either drained or covered properly. Cutting back your flora and covering any delicate plants will also help prep your garden for spring.

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