With the winter months fast approaching, it’s important to remember that it’s not just us who feel the brunt of the colder weather. Whilst we prepare with coats, fluffy socks and thermals, we must remember to also prepare our homes with some necessary TLC to protect it from the harsh winter elements as well.
Although every home is unique and may require different levels of maintenance and preparation, it’s no doubt essential to make sure it’s ready for the cold weather to come. Here are five of our top housekeeping tips for making sure your home is winter-ready.
Check your home’s exterior
The exterior of a home can often be overlooked as we tend to focus more on what’s in front of us in the interior. You’d be forgiven, as we spend more time inside of our homes during the winter. However, it’s nonetheless essential to make sure the outside of the property is also prepared for the cold.
Check over your drains to make sure they’re not blocked or damaged. If you notice any flaws in these areas, it’s worth getting them fixed – especially before the winter months. Overflowing drains can cause issues to the structure of the house and result in damp issues, which can be worsened by the winter cold.
You may also want to consider securing exterior rubbish and recycling bins in anticipation of high winds which can be in effect during winter. This will not only be beneficial as a safety precaution, but spilt bins can also attract unwanted pests.
Keep your home warm
Keeping your home at a suitably warm temperature throughout the colder months (even when you’re not in) can help prevent a range of issues – with perhaps the most important being damp.
As cold air is unable to hold as much moisture as warm air, not keeping your home warm throughout winter can result in excess moisture build-up in areas such as walls, windows and doors. Maintaining a warm temperature in the home throughout this period is likely to deter damp from becoming an issue. This is especially important if you live near the sea or a large body of water, the excess water in the air can make your home more exposed to damp.
Prepare for the worst
The potential for stormy weather during the winter months can cause many issues throughout to your home, both inside and out.
Although power cuts can happen at any time throughout the year, the likeliness of one happening may be heightened as a result of adverse weather conditions during the winter. Whilst our smartphones may help us during a power cut with their access to 4G, torches and radio, it’s worth remembering that you’ll be unable to charge them should the power issue persist. Set aside some torches, or maybe even a few candles in a place you’ll remember just in case a power cut happens.
Insulate and seal drafts if necessary
If you live in an older home or one which lacks insulation, it may be worth taking precautionary measures to beef up how your home manages warmth.
Installing some additional insulation throughout your home – be it around pipes and/or walls – is not only likely to keep you warm during winter but also can help you save money on utility bills in the long term. Although it’s an investment, it’s likely to pay off as a result of these long term savings, all whilst increasing your homes energy efficiency rating.
It may also be worth sealing any cracks/gaps throughout the home which are letting cold air in. Cracked window frames, gaps underneath doors and defective ceilings (for example) can be problematic in letting in cold air, meaning you’ll need to spend more on heating the home to make up for it. Consider fixing these before the cold months come into full effect.
Consider servicing your boiler
There’s no doubt that we rely heavily on our boilers throughout winter to keep us and our homes toasty and warm, and it’s quite possibly the last thing that we’d want to break down on us throughout the freezing months.
If your boiler hasn’t been serviced in the past year, it may be worth scheduling to have it checked over before winter begins. Don’t leave it until it’s too late – make sure your boiler is prepared and ready to survive the cold months, otherwise you could be left out in the cold.
We hope our tips will help your home survive the winter months! However, if you do need general property advice or are thinking of selling, do please get in touch here.