Fall Home Checklist

4:28 pm

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We see the signs of fall all around us. With home ownership comes seasonal maintenance. Know what to do to get your home prepared for cooler weather.

  • Check home safety devices. The batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide devices should be replaced. Test all devices.
  • Winterize your air conditioning. A central air unit requires a cover on the outdoor unit. Window units should be removed or covered to prevent a blast of cold air.
  • Inspect your furnace. An HVAC professional can check for leaks, heating efficiency and change the filter, in addition to running a carbon monoxide check.
  • Prepare humidifiers. Humidifiers are often used when the air becomes too dry to be comfortable during cooler periods. Ensure that their contribution is clean and safe. Replace any old filters. Clean inner compartments with vinegar or another solution.
  • Clean out the gutters. Remove leaves, debris, and nests from gutters and look carefully for any leaks. You can either do this yourself or hire a service to handle it for you.
  • Check the siding. Look for signs of cracks or holes in the siding. Minor issues can be repaired yourself or you can contract a professional to help.
  • Look over your roof. Perform a visual inspection from the ground. You can use a pair of binoculars to see your roof in more detail or climb up on a ladder to get a good view. Be on the lookout for loose, cracked or missing shingles. Flat roofs might require the removal of built-up debris.
  • Review your water drainage systems. Remove any obstructions from downspouts and make sure that water is able to move away from the foundation of your home, your driveway or walkways. An additional extension may be necessary to direct the accumulated rainwater away from the home.
  • Inspect your sprinklers and irrigation system. Ensuring that the irrigation system is drained and checked is necessary in colder climates. A professional should perform repairs and mark those sprinkler heads close to a snow removal area.
  • Maintain the chimney and fireplace. For homeowners that enjoy a wood fireplace, the chimney needs to be cleaned and professionally inspected.
  • Change and repair windows and doors. Storm windows and doors should replace screens. All caulk and seals need to be inspected around doors and windows. While there, check for drafts as well. Minor caulking can be done yourself.

Ensure the integrity of your investment with seasonal maintenance.

Are You Prepared For Hurricane Joaquin? 5 Tips

1:52 pm

With a potentially hazardous hurricane on the way, it’s important we all prepare for the worst. As major coastal towns and cities have made preparations, we must also ensure we are prepared in the home.

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Below, five tips to ensure your home and family remain safe during the coming storm:

  1. Power up: Ensure that all of your battery powered devices are charged, and that you purchase extra batteries. These include cellphones, flashlights, and radios. For families with many portable electronics, you may want to consider picking up some of these portable batteries.
  2. Stay hydrated: Hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Purchase enough water so that each family member will have multiple litres per day during the duration of the storm. Tap water may become contaminated during major storms.
  3. Gas up: Gas up your car, and fill your propane tank. This will allow your family an escape route if needed as well as a means to prepare food and purify water.
  4. Tend to the yard: While this may not be top-of-mind for many in this type of situation, it is important to make sure your yard is free of materials that may cause harm to the home or others. Ensure your lawn furniture is secured or brought into the garage. Additionally, remove all loose limbs from trees. It’s better you take them down than the hurricane winds pull them down, causing damage.
  5. Hit the ATM: While we are used to living in a plastic powered world, many establishments may lose power during this upcoming storm. Ensure you have enough cash on hand for whatever you may need.