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Spring Clean Is Here Again
As the days get warmer (or colder in the case of this crazy weather), we naturally begin to ready ourselves for spring and eventually summer. We prepare fantasy baseball lineups, get pedicures, exercise in preparation for swimsuit weather, and much more just so we’re ready when those long, hot days finally arrive. But just as we prepare ourselves for spring and beyond, our homes also need a little TLC after long, harsh winters. Frigid temperatures, strong winds, and dry air can take a toll on houses -- both inside and out. For this reason, it is important to put a little time into ensuring that you’ll be able to sit back and enjoy the warmer weather once it is finally here to stay.
Seasonal home maintenance requires some planning and organization. So, I did what any good, ready to please realtor would do, and compiled a list of indoor and outdoor projects that will whip your house back into shape in no time. You’re welcome.
Inspect your roof, windows, and doors for evidence of winter damage. Check for continuity of shingles, tightly sealed flashing, and take the time to clean out your gutters and downspouts while you’re on the roof! Examine caulking and weather stripping around windows and doors.
Prepare the landscape. While it isn’t quite time yet to plant your garden or water the yard, now is the time to get those things ready! Replace old, cracked garden hoses, and rake away leaves, dead brush, and other debris from walkways, plant beds, and gardens. Sidewalks, decks, patios, brick, vinyl siding, and dirty paved areas should be power washed. Spring is the ideal time to start thinking about your landscaping ideas and lawn care maintenance regimen.
Replace outdoor lighting, if necessary. Check deck, entryway, and landscape lights for burnt out bulbs.
Spring clean! Now is the perfect time to freshen up all areas of your home! Vacuum, dust, mop, organize, and purge your home of things you are no longer using. Give all blankets, bedding, and curtains a wash, and consider shampooing your carpet. Don’t forget about frequently neglected areas such as blinds, air vents, and ceiling fans.
HVAC tune-up. Spring is an ideal time to ensure that your home’s major HVAC unit is functioning properly. A professional can see to it that, not only is your unit working correctly, but also that it gets the maintenance necessary to keep it that way. Doing this now before the extreme heat takes over will be MUCH less pricey than it would be in 3 months!
Wash those windows. The winter elements -- snow, rain, and wind -- result in a grimy build-up on your windows, which can actually make rooms appear darker when less natural light is being let through. The other thing to think about with regards to your windows is that as the temps rise, so do our tendencies to let the fresh air in. The last thing you want is fresh, spring air blowing through dirty screens, polluting the air in your home. Window screens can be hosed off in your yard and left to air-dry in the sun.
Change direction of ceiling fans. Finally, during the warmers months of spring and summer you will want your ceiling fan blades to be turning counterclockwise. This will send air down into the rooms, making it feel cooler, thus potentially lessening the need for the use of an air conditioner. Sounds like a great way to save money to me!
Whether you’re a spring cleaning enthusiast or a serial avoider, hopefully these short lists prove manageable enough to make a difference in your home AND in your life -- leaving you ready to enjoy warmer temperatures!
Attitude is everything – and attitude is what makes Heather Wright's real estate clients return to her every time they want to buy or sell a home in the Des Moines area. Heather, a self-described....