What are the most important fall home maintenance tasks to complete?
Home maintenance is important no matter what time of year it is. However, there are certain tasks that you really should complete in the fall, especially if you’re listing your house for sale in the Okanagan. Deferring cleaning & maintenance is one of the top reasons buyers are scared away from a home, so it’s important you don’t neglect these tasks! Reduce these issues to avoid and hiccups during the home inspection process and set yourself up for a quick sale! The following are 10 of the most important tips for preparing your home for the fall.
1. Care for your Trees, Bushes & Shrubs
The scorching heat of our Okanagan summer can leave your yard parched. If you’ve kept up with regular watering over the past few months it’s still very likely that your bushes are still lacking water. Apply fresh mulch to the underside of shrubs & bushes to trap in that much needed moisture. Set your trees, bushes & shrubs up for the winter by properly pruning & trimming them. This will help promote blooming in the spring & you’ll thank yourself for winterizing your yard now. Plant new bushes or trees. Since there’s less chance for extreme weather changes in the fall this will give them ample time to settle before the winter arrives.
2. Rake your Leaves
Raking your leaves seems like a no-brainer. Even more so if your Realtor is showing your house to potential buyers. Give these buyers a look at what your neat & tidy yard looks like in the fall by keeping it looking crisp & clean. Raking your leaves also allows your grass to breathe, which is important to reduce lawn diseases, molds & pest infestations. Consider starting a compost with your leaves & come spring apply the composed material to your garden beds. A great cost saving tip!
3. Weed & Seed your Lawn
Throughout the spring, summer & fall seasons there are different types of lawn care products that should be used to keep your yard looking pristine. For example, in the spring you should consider whether it would be beneficial to treat your lawn with crab grass killer. During the fall, using some sort of winter guard product might also be a good idea due to our fairly harsh winter conditions which can be detrimental to lawns that aren’t properly prepped. Feeding & seeding can help your lawn flourish come springtime. One good tip is to over-seed in areas that may have burnt from the Okanagan sunshine or from lack of watering over the summer.
4. Gutters & Downspouts
One of the leading causes of leaky roofs is lack of maintenance to gutters & downspouts. This is an easily avoidable headache with just a little elbow grease. Cleaning leaves & debris from your gutters & placing protective equipment around the opening to downspouts help to maintain the integrity of your roof. A build-up of gunk can redirect water & cause seepage in your roof, walls & potentially into your interior living area. Keeping your gutters in proper working order can also prevent ice damming which can also wreak havoc on your home and result in costly repairs.
5. Inspect your Roof
Repairs to your roof can cost thousands of dollars! A simple semi-annual inspection can help you avoid unexpected expenses. Take a look at the flashing on your roof and make sure it’s in proper working order. Something as simple as a piece of loose flashing could cause a leak. Make sure your gutters are secure to the house as well. If you have shingles be sure that they aren’t damaged or missing. Clear your roof of any vegetation. Moss growing on the roof itself or overgrown trees that are touching your house can shorten the lifespan of your roof. Be sure to remove all deficiencies to avoid any issues that could arise in a home inspection.
6. Store your Outdoor Furniture
Summertime is great for enjoying your outdoor deck or patio, but now that fall is here it’s time to bring your furniture inside. Patio furniture is expensive enough as it is without having to replace it yearly. Don’t ruin it by leaving it out to weather in the snow & cold conditions. Protect it from the elements by either putting it away in a garage, shed, or basement or purchase furniture covers to drape over them for the snowy months.
Hoses are often overlooked. If left out during the cold months, idle water could freeze & damage your plumbing. Drain excess water from your hose & bring them inside. Be sure to shut off the water supply to your hose bib, or consider installing a frost-free hose bib if you need access to your hose throughout the winter for filling hot tubs, etc. Don’t forget to have your irrigation lines blown out so they don’t freeze & crack resulting in costly repairs down the road.
8. Service your Fireplace
Fall is the best time to have your fireplace serviced. Start out the season on a fresh note. Avoid any accidents that could arise from unattended fireplaces. Wood burning fireplaces especially require attention once a year to clean out any creosote built up in the chimney. It’s always a good idea to get rid of any dirt, dust & pet hair that’s accumulate in your heating source and could potentially become a hazard.
Your A/C was very likely blasting all summer long. The fall months are quite a bit cooler & you’ll be turning your heat on to warm up. Be sure that your HVAC system is in proper working order. Cleaning out your air vents, changing the filter & adjusting the humidity can make a difference in your air quality & quite possibly your heating bill! Having this done professionally can also help during the home inspection process. Your HVAC system is one of the top items flagged on home inspections, so having it professionally serviced can mitigate any issues that could arise during the sales process.
10. Winter Essentials
Put yourself ahead of the competition and purchase all your winter supplies now. A decent snow shovel & a product for melting the ice such as salt will ensure that if it snows during the time your house is on the market you’ll be prepared to make your home “show worthy”. Clearing your driveway & walkways makes your house safe & presentable for potential buyers when your agent brings them for a peek! It also makes your house look clean & tidy.
These 10 fall home maintenance tips should never be ignored! Homeowners who follow these tips and complete the tasks mentioned exponentially improve the overall health of their home. Those who decide these tasks aren’t important often end up spending hundreds or potentially thousands of dollars in repairs that could’ve been avoided.
Are you thinking about starting fall home maintenance tasks on your home in The Okanagan? The above tasks and tips are critical to keep your home in top notch shape. Since we often experience extreme weather during the winter in BC, Interior, it’s critical you complete these important fall home maintenance tasks! If you’re looking for contractors or companies in Kelowna BC, or the surrounding area, to assist with these tasks, contact us at The Property Source Group and we can suggest a top rated business who can help you!
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