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Winter is Coming Part Two: Home Warming Tips to Help on a Budget

Posted by Haley Moran on Dec 6, 2016 2:11:37 AM

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Ice is dangerous. If not well mamtainedl you could have trouble selling your home due to water damagte and wood rot.

The autumn season is notoriously busy for homeowners, and MoneyBug knows you can quickly fall behind on necessary repairs. If you get a head-start now, you can take advantage of the warm weather to prepare your home for winter.

 Don't waste your time with pointless upgrades, let’s go over some to-do’s that can prepare your house for the soon-to-be cold months ahead.


Tips to Stay Warm without Burning Through Your Budget.

Yeah, I know. We’ve all been putting off preparing for the coming winter. Well, you know what? It’s here, so it’s best to get comfortable.

When it comes to home maintenance during the spring and summer, those tasks are a cakewalk. If you forget to mow the lawn or trim the hedges one week, it’s not the end of the world. However, winter  is whole different ballgame. A below-freezing, ice-covered, blistering ballgame with serious, if not deadly consequences.

So, to hopefully increase your chance of thriving survival during the cold, winter months, here are 12 of the most commonly forgotten maintenance tasks.

Last Minute Autumn To-do’s Before Winter. 

1) Make sure your smoke detectors are in working order.

When the weather cools down, there's more of a fire risk. Protect your home and maintain smoke alarms.

When the weather cools down, we tend to turn up the heat. Naturally, this causes homes to become more susceptible to fires and carbon monoxide. Protect yourself from danger and ensure the batteries are charged in all of your smoke alarms. Test the alarms, make sure they work, and keep extra batteries on-hand.

2) Double-check your foundation.

Double check your foundation for cracks, and repair any damaged areas to prevent water damage.

It’s likely you haven’t seen much rain since July, but, come September, we are likely in for some wetter weather. The last thing you want is for water to get into any gaps. Caulking or repairing vital areas will prevent mold growth or damage from freezing.

Take advantage of the dry, warm weather and inspect your foundation, sidewalks, and driveway for cracks. Apply caulk to needed areas around wires, pipes, door frames, and windows, and repair your driveway with a filler and commercial seal coating. If your home has foundation cracks or flood damage, it can be very expensive to repair.

3) Make sure your pool is ready for the off-season.

Ensure the well-being of your pool, check your pool cover for damage before you need it.

The cover of your pool needs to withstand a lot during fall and winter seasons. Give your cover a good once- or -twice over to make sure there aren’t any holes or tears, and replace it if necessary.

4) Adequately prepare your lawn equipment for storage.

Store your lawn equipment after draining out all the fuel.

Granted, you may need to use your yard equipment in fall, but if not, you should safely store it away. Drain fuel from any gas-powered leaf blowers, lawnmowers, or chainsaws, and clean your equipment before storing in a dry, covered space.

Granted, you may need to use your yard equipment in fall, but if not, you should safely store it away. Drain fuel from any gas-powered leaf blowers, lawnmowers, or chainsaws, and clean your equipment before storing in a dry, covered space.

5) Give your roof a check-up.

Prevent water damage in the fall and winter by double-checking your roof during the summer.

The wet weather during fall and winter can wreak havoc on your roof, and even small leaks can lead to deterioration of wood, drywall, and insulation. Take this time to get ahead on roof maintenance. Make sure your shingles are in good shape, and there aren’t any that are loose or missing. For extra assurance, have a certified roofing professional double-check the condition of your roof. It may be a hassle, but it could save you a whole lot of time and trouble in the long run. 

6) Inspect, repair, or replace your windows.

Repair any damaged windows to prevent against losing heat in the fall and winter.

Check all windows for cracks and loose frames, or install storm windows. Some homeowners remove their screens, too. Just be sure you clean or repair your window screens before you store them away in a dry storage space.

Check all windows for cracks and loose frames, or install storm windows. Some homeowners remove their screens, too. Just be sure you clean or repair your window screens before you store them away in a dry storage space.

7) Encourage low energy costs.

Check for window drafts during the summer and you'll save on your fall heating bill.

Windows and doors that are adequately sealed can save up to 20% of heating or cooling costs, which could amount to 10% of your energy bill. Make sure there aren’t any air drafts around windows and doors, and apply caulk to these areas to make a big difference in air leakage.

On that note, it’s a good idea to have a licensed heating contractor look over your heating system. Properly servicing your heater will lead to the most efficient use of fuel and can help promote its long-lasting lifetime. If your heating system is out-of-date, it could be hard to replace and even harder to sell your home in the future. 

8) Don’t forget the deck furniture.

Keep your patio furniture in shape and store it away for the wet, cool fall months.

Check out your porch furniture, and repair any damaged spots. To prevent mildew, store away any outdoor furniture with cushions, and clean off any dirt and debris before you put chairs, tables, umbrellas, or barbecues in a dry, protected area. It’s a good idea to look over the supports on any porch or deck steps, too. Make sure any handrails can support someone slipping on rain or icy spots.

Check out your porch furniture, and repair any damaged spots. To prevent mildew, store away any outdoor furniture with cushions, and clean off any dirt and debris before you put chairs, tables, umbrellas, or barbecues in a dry, protected area. It’s a good idea to look over the supports on any porch or deck steps, too. Make sure any handrails can support someone slipping on rain or icy spots.

9) Inspect your fireplace or woodstove.

Chimney fires are a serious matter. Make sure your chimney is clean before you start a fire this season.

We all enjoy the company of a roaring fire in our fireplace, but it is imperative to maintain your chimney. Neglect can have deadly consequences. A clogged chimney can lead to a buildup of wood tar, vapors, and moisture, otherwise known as creosote, which is highly flammable and extremely dangerous. Prevent house fires that begin in your chimney by having your chimney cleaned by a licensed chimney sweep, and inspect for any parts that may have cracks, grime buildup, or other hazards.

We all enjoy the company of a roaring fire in our fireplace, but it is imperative to maintain your chimney. Neglect can have deadly consequences. A clogged chimney can lead to a buildup of wood tar, vapors, and moisture, otherwise known as creosote, which is highly flammable and extremely dangerous. Prevent house fires that begin in your chimney by having your chimney cleaned by a licensed chimney sweep, and inspect for any parts that may have cracks, grime buildup, or other hazards.

10) Set up for springtime.
Fertilizing your lawn in the fall is a great way to ensure spring green.

Spring might seem a long way away, but you can get a head-start on a picture-perfect lawn or garden in the late summer or early fall. Plant some spring flowering bulbs in your garden, and fertilize your lawn with a high-phosphorous plant mix to ensure healthy, green landscaping next spring.

Spring might seem a long way away, but you can get a head-start on a picture-perfect lawn or garden in the late summer or early fall. Plant some spring flowering bulbs in your garden, and fertilize your lawn with a high-phosphorous plant mix to ensure healthy, green landscaping next spring.

Have a maintenance list that’s too long?

All of these tasks will help you get ready for the harsh weather of fall and winter seasons, but this list could be a lot longer for some. If you home is old or has existing damage, we don’t blame you for dreading the upcoming cold weather. Rain, snow, and ice can deteriorate the condition of an older home, and if you don’t have the time or resources to make repairs, the weather can certainly take its toll.

Don’t stress just yet, you actually have an option to avoid making repairs altogether.

MoneyBug will buy your house no matter what, so you can sidestep costly maintenance, and find yourself in a new house by the winter. You don’t even have to make any repairs before you sell, we will buy your house even if it has been damaged. We are here to lessen your financial burden, and with our highest-possible cash offer guarantee, you can be rest assured that, in no time, you can find a new place to settle in for a long winter.

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If these hacks, tips, and tricks to avoid high energy costs are still leaving you out in the cold  question, then you might need to consider replacing your heating appliances, thermostats, and air-seal your home against drafts. However, that also carries a hefty price-tag, and you need more economical solutions to survive the winter. If these options are out of your budget, then don’t worry. Instead of fixing it, you can sell it for top-dollar.


MoneyBug will buy your house, and it doesn’t even matter if there’s heating issues or drafty doors and windows, we can close the sale in as little as seven days and pay the highest possible amount of cash for your house, guaranteed. The faster the sale is completed, the faster you can get into a new, warmer, cozy home.

It all starts with your personalized cash offer. You want to stay warm, right? Well how about starting with some cold hard cash?

Don't Fix It, Sell It!

Haley Moran

Written by Haley Moran

With a mother who's a successful interior decorator and a grandfather who's a house flipper, Haley grew up in an environment that was centered around real estate. She has a background in journalism and mass communications, and has been a non-fiction writer since 2004.

Topics: Insider, Homeowner Tips and Tricks

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