Oh, how I love the cooler weather!  I look forward to it every year, and can’t wait to nestle in on a rainy day with soups in the slow cooker and wine by the fireplace.  It’s seriously my idea of bliss. : )  But, with the cooler wet weather comes a whole new set of things to think about with regard to home maintenance.  So, jump in and get these chores out of the way now!  A little preparation ahead of time, and you’ll be sitting by the fire too, with peace of mind that your house is ready.

  • Dump the Standing Water ~ The rainy season is on its way, so if you have open containers on your property such as flower pots or bird baths, they’re going to fill up.  Do you like slimy, green algae?  I’m thinking the answer is NO.  Keep it from forming by either storing them away, or just do what I do, and turn them upside down!

  • Adjust the Sprinklers ~ Save water (and money!) by changing your sprinkler timers. Either reduce the number of days you’re watering, or the amount of time set for each station. By the time winter comes, you should be able to turn them off completely!  This is also a good time to check each sprinkler head and make adjustments on the spray patterns.  This guy’s watering the street as well as his lawn. : /
  • Clear the Clutter ~ There’s nothing that annoys me more than pests and rodents around my house.  Rats lurking in the shrubs?  Eeekk!  Extra clutter around the perimeter of your home is the perfect hiding place to escape the colder weather, so get these areas tidied up now.  Trimming shrubs up away from the ground will strongly discourage rodents from camping out on your property.  Tip:  If you have ivy on your property, you might as well put out a welcome mat!  I know this from personal experience, and I was not a happy homeowner!

  • Seal the Gaps ~ Bats in your belfry?  Well, maybe not, but you can sure have rats in your attic!  They LOVE to set up house in the insulation, and I’ve had my own personal war with these little vermin.  Trust me – if you get ONE, you’ll have a whole family before you know it.  When I Googled images of rats in the attic there was some pretty nasty stuff, but I opted for this pic, since it’s normally not a good idea to gross out your readers.  But, this guy’s looking at YOU, and letting you know he’s got your address! : )

Walk the perimeter of your home and look for openings that would allow them access, and get them sealed up. Even a quarter-sized opening is large enough for a rat to squeeze through!  Insulating spray foam sealant works great, and is available at any hardware or home improvement store, in a variety of brands.

  • Furnace Filter Check ~ Though your filters should be checked more than once per year, it helps to use Fall as a reminder for this basic maintenance. Your furnace is the blower unit for both your heating AND air conditioning, so it’s been cranking away all summer long! Change the filter often for maximum performance and energy efficiency.

I hope you found these tips helpful, and I know there are many other ways to prepare for Fall.  If you want to think ahead to even colder weather, I’ve got some tips on this previous blog post too.  I’d love to hear your comments and ideas!

~ Kathy

Everyone deserves a home they love ~ Inside and Out!