With winter in full swing, it is important to be mindful of the impact that Canada’s climate has on our homes. The freezing temperatures, snow, and ice can certainly take their toll. You may want to hunker down and hibernate inside beside a cozy fire… but before you do, bundle up and head outdoors to assess your property’s exterior. A little vigilance will help you avoid some problems that can be easily prevented. Not only will you protect your home’s value from being negatively impacted by disrepair, you could save yourself from costly and sometimes messy problems.

Keeping up with seasonal maintenance is an important task year round. Here are some items to be mindful of during the winter months:

  • Inspect gutters to ensure any blockage resulting from debris or ice build-up is removed so that eavestroughs are not damaged from weight and will allow melting snow to escape and drain off and away from your roof.
  • Be sure to check vents from furnace, water heater, and dryer to ensure proper airflow isn’t compromised from snow build-up.
  • Keep salt and sand available to add some grit to slippery areas and melt ice that can cause a fall.
    Remove excessive amounts of snow from roof, especially near flashing or on low-pitch areas to avoid ice-damming or issues related to heavy snow.
  • Check flashing and transitions and ensure they are water-tight and well-sealed to avoid melting snow from leaking inside.
  • Survey your shrubs and landscaping and protect as necessary so that snow and ice will not cause damage to brittle or fragile branches.
  • Keep an eye on pipes and plumbing – especially on exterior walls. Outside faucets should be shut off, with excessive water drained from lines to avoid standing water from freezing and bursting the pipe.

Whether you’re new to home ownership and learning the ropes of how to care for a home… getting ready to list this spring while hoping to simplify any extra ‘to-do’s’ before you’re market-ready… or a long-time homeowner simply in need of a reminder or two – take responsibility for your home so that it will function optimally and save you from the hassle and stress of problems that can be avoided with regular upkeep. I’m keen to help you protect one of your largest investments… and that means helping you keep tabs on necessary chores on the home front.

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