Winter can be hard on your home and on your bank account. Colder temperatures often mean increased utility costs. Winter weather is also more likely to expose small problems with your house and turn them into costly repairs. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to prepare your home for winter that will help you save money and help avoid major home repair issues.
Inspect Your Home
One of the first things you should do is have your home inspected. Often, utilities will do a free energy conservation home inspection. You can also hire a home inspector to help spot any potential problems. An inspection will let you know if you are losing heat through poor insulation or weather stripping. An inspection can also reveal cracks in the roof or other vulnerable parts of your house. These cracks can let in moisture that can cause everything from flooding to mold infestations.
The inspector will give you a list of problems and potential solutions. It is always better to fix problems early, before they turn into something more serious and more expensive.
Keep the Heat In
One of the best ways to save money on your bills in the winter is to make sure and keep the heat inside. This means making sure your doors and windows stay closed. If you have a fireplace, make sure the flue is closed when it is not in use.
If you have had an inspection you will know what windows and doors need better weather stripping or insulation. If you have an older home, you may be able to save money and increase the value of your home by installing new energy efficient windows.
If the heat is escaping your home, it’s like releasing money into the air. Keep the heat inside.
Winter is a great time to make sure all of your routine maintenance issues are taken care of. Some examples of things you need to take care of every winter include:
- Detaching hoses from the house and storing them for the winter
- Changing the batteries in your smoke detectors
- Make sure there are no loose or missing shingles on your roof
- Change the furnace filters
- Program your thermostat for lower temperatures when everyone will be gone and at night when everyone is sleeping
Taking care of simple tasks will give you peace of mind and will help you save money this winter.
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