How to prepare your home for the cold weather

As winter approaches, homeowners must take the necessary steps to protect their property. This article will focus on safety, comfort, and energy efficiency, which can be achieved with minimal hustle and before the winter season unravels fully. Snow and ice can be troublesome, especially if you live in Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, Vancouver, and Virginia, so it’s better to be prepared than sorry.

If you’ve owned a home before, you know the maintenance falls on your shoulders. 

Irrespective of whether you are in the market for a nice new construction home or a resale property, seasonal precautions apply equally across the board. 

Proper inspection and a helpful checklist will save time, energy, and money while avoiding significant headaches.

Check the integrity of the roof

When you begin the winter preparations, you should always start with the roof. This is your first line of defense against cold weather. To that end, ensure it maintains its integrity and check for loose tiles, broken or missing shingles, rippled seams, and other signs of wear. If repairs are required, hire a professional to ensure the job is done correctly.

According to Fixr, it takes $400-2500 to repair a leaking roof, depending on the severity of the damage. A minor problem with the roofing installation can often translate into a major headache for the electrical installation and your drywall. Therefore, the best way to prevent costly repairs is to act early.

Clean the gutters


Gutters are necessary to prevent water accumulation and keep vast amounts of precipitation away from your property. However, leaves and other debris can quickly pile up, compromising the installation. To prevent this, clean your gutters and look for any broken or clogged parts before the first snow. If there is a need for repair, hire a certified roofing contractor as soon as possible to get everything in order. Furthermore, adding gutter guards, which are relatively inexpensive, can significantly reduce your maintenance time during winter.

Inspect the HVAC system

HVAC is an acronym for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. However, nothing exhausts the heating function as much as freezing weather, so it is best to schedule an inspection around the end of autumn. Similarly, when the ventilation function is operating poorly, it creates the perfect conditions for mold and condensation issues that may quickly escalate.

Average HVAC maintenance can run anywhere between $50-150. Hence, scheduling an annual maintenance service that performs two diagnostic tests during spring and autumn is best. And while these prices are relatively stable throughout the year, increased demand during winter can overbook many service providers and leave you in the cold – both figuratively and literally.

Insulate the attic

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While adding new insulation can be quite an investment, the lower energy bills will eventually pay for the expanses. In the meantime, you’ll enjoy more convenience and use additional square footage. Similarly, an empty attic may prove quite liberating financially for families who pay monthly retainers for storage facilities.

In addition, suppose you decide to put your property on the market. In that case, you’ll have more bargaining power and an added incentive for potential buyers.

Add coating to the driveway

When it comes to winter safety, driveways and walkways usually require special attention. While a simple coating of sand can be used for traction, you should consider applying some gravel or salt when the temperatures are too low. Furthermore, planning with a concrete sealant can prove quite beneficial and reduce the overall maintenance cost while increasing the surface’s integrity.

Needless to say, gravel and sand can get your entrance messy in a matter of days, ruining your curb appeal. Concrete sealants, on the other hand, provide a smooth finish that adds to the overall aesthetic.

Pay attention to the lighting

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Snowy days and long evenings can take a toll on our vision, so ensuring that all light fixtures are in working condition is essential. Outdoor fixtures add liveliness to your property and significantly increase security. Conversely, indoor LED lighting can properly illuminate living areas, keeping your eyesight healthy. One study found that poor-quality indoor lighting is detrimental to children’s eyesight development and study performance. Therefore, it is vital to counteract gloomy winters with bright indoor luminance.

Overall, investing time and money into winter preparation can save you a lot of trouble. Similarly, these proactive habits can significantly increase the value of your residential property. Whether it be cleaning the gutters, inspecting the HVAC system, or adding insulation to the attic, these small steps can go a long way toward convenience, comfort, and safety.

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