My favorite season was the shortest season this year. The autumn came late and it seems like the winter is here already. Here is a list of things we should do to prepare our home for the winter. #winterpreparedness #northernvirginiawinter #virginialisforlovers
If you own a rental property, please forward to your tenants as well.
If you are planning to use the wood burning fireplace, please have it checked by a professional and get a chimney sweep. It should be checked annually if it's being used. It is best to be safe then to be sorry!
2. Empty the water pipes
This is such a simple thing for you to do. But if you don't, it will cost you a ton! When the weather gets freezing enough for the pipes to freeze, the water in the pipes will expand and burst. When the spring comes, the water will melt and start leaking. Avoid damaging your home and turn off the shut off valve from inside to outdoors, turn the spout on to drain the water pipes to outdoors and keep the water spout turned on.
As such, do the same for the sprinkler system and drain the pipes. If you need, please hire a professional.
3. Clean the gutters
We love the northern Virginia and it's beautiful trees. However, after it turns to it's beautiful colors, it will start falling. They fall in your gutters. Get those gutters cleaned! It will rot and when it is full, the water will not be flowing away from the house the way it was designed to do.
4. Use mulching lawn mower
I just found out about these. No need to bag the raked leaves. Mow them over with mulching lawn mower. It breaks the leaves down and can be left as is organically mulching your green.
5. Get furnace and boiler inspected
Get it checked out before it gets cold. Have a contract with a professional set up so they can come out to help you repair if it ever has a problem.
6. Ceiling Fan
If your ceiling fan has a reverse switch, use it to circulate the heat downward as the heat rises. This is especially helpful if you have a tall ceiling.
7. Windows and Doors
Lower your utility bills and caulk around all the openings around your home to keep cold air from coming in. Again, do the same for paint, caulk and seal exterior wood as well.
This is not a complete list but it's enough to get started. It can be done with low cost and a few could be done yourself. Keep your home and your family protected from the elements and prepare.
Yon Chung, CPA, Realtor is a real estate agent based in McLean, Virginia (Capital Area Homes | Keller Williams Realty). She personally invests in real estate around Northern Virginia and out of state. Yon Chung serves sellers and buyers of primary homes and investment properties in Fairfax County.