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Winter Preparations: Getting Your Home Ready for the Cold

Posted by IKO Community Management on November 13, 2014 at 11:47 AM

There’s a chill in the air! Some Maryland counties are calling for snow tonight, if you can believe it. Have you prepared your home for the winter months? If you haven’t, don’t worry. IKO Community Management has a list of 6 winter preparations you should complete before the snow piles up.

  1. Prepare your lawn.
    As we reminded you in our Fall Lawn Care Tips post, preparing your lawn for spring starts now. You may not need to worry about your grass anymore, but there are still steps you should take to ensure that your lawn is ready for the winter ahead:
    • Trim your hedges. Before you decorate for the holidays, trim the shrubs, bushes and other annuals. Cut everything back as recommended.
    • Plant. Before the ground freezes, plant any trees or shrubs that are on your list. Not only do greenhouses run specials at the end of the summer season, but planting during the cooler months is better for the plants. Less stress, more moisture, and less pressure from the sun.
    • Clear debris. Before your lawn becomes a muddy mess, clean up any garbage or plant debris that may be cluttering your yard.
    • Drain your irrigation system. Trust us, you don’t want to deal with a blown sprinkler system. Before you drain, make sure that your system is shut down.
  2. Consider a home energy audit
    If you’re dreading the cost of heating your home this winter, it’s a good time to have a home energy audit preformed on your home. This audit will tell you what in your home is consuming the most energy, how to lessen your energy consumption, and will give you insight on what appliances you should upgrade. You can do this yourself, or hire a professional to help you. Many HVAC companies offer promotions from time to time that will either allow you to save money on an energy audit or receive one free of charge.
  3. Preventative maintenance.
    Don’t be caught with a broken heating system. Before it gets too cold, consider calling a professional to check your boiler or furnace. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
  4. Stock up.
    Hope for the best this winter, but prepare for the worst. You don’t want to be caught unprepared when bad weather hits. If you have supplies lying around your house, gather them together and store them where you’ll be able to find them in event of an emergency. Some good items to include in your emergency supply are:
    • Flashlight with batteries
    • Extra batteries – keep multiple kinds on hand
    • First Aid Kit
    • Hand warmers
    • Candles and matches
    • Nonperishable food items that don’t require preparation using the stove or extra ingredients from the refrigerator in case of a power outage. Some examples include dried fruit, jerky and cereal.
    • Crank radio
  5. Refresh your memory.
    Find out who is responsible for snow removal in your HOA community, guidelines for holiday decorations, and other winter specific HOA guidelines. Know the rules and guidelines to prevent any issues.
  6. Get ready for snow days.
    Visit our Pinterest board to collect ideas to help keep the little ones occupied when they’re home due to school cancellations. It’s a good idea to plan both indoor and outdoor fun!

As winter approaches, IKO Community Management hopes that your family enjoys this beautiful season safely. REMEMBER: Be prepared and you'll have less to worry about and more time to spend with your family. Stay warm, and stock up on hot chocolate! It's going to be a cold one.

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Topics: Homeowners