Holiday and Winter Ready

What a year it has been… we continue to hear these words almost daily and how true they are. It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is a few weeks away, and Christmas and other important holidays are fast approaching.   Ready or not, the season is here, and Barbara Popp Real Estate Services encourages you to get your home ready and prepare whether you will be alone, entertaining family or having a few friends for a visit.  Everyone needs to enjoy their traditions. Think of the smells of the holiday’s Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa, each with their unique menus, decorating inside and out, shopping (this year online), watching for the UPS truck, or just relaxing and having some fun.  Barbara Popp supports common sense and following the COVID rules for safety. 

In previous years you may have been dreaming of a winter wonderland. This year it’s more important to dust off the cobwebs and clear out to make room for all the holiday excitement.   Begin with decluttering. Go through each room, put items in piles, and donate unwanted items.  Tackle big projects first, like carpet cleaning or a fresh coat of paint, and call in the experts when necessary.  Clear the dust.  Dust bunnies have no place under the tree.  Make a to-do list.  Does the silver need polishing? Do the tablecloths need ironing? Create a Chore Chart and use it to delegate to family members.  Decorate and enjoy!

While cleaning, cooking, and decorating are at the forefront, it is essential to think about making your home winter ready. Don’t be lulled by the warm sun-filled days into thinking winter isn’t going to come.  Organizing your home for winter can seem like an annoying and perhaps unnecessary chore.  But the financial benefits will outweigh any feelings of being “put out.” Winter heating costs can skyrocket if your windows are poorly insulated, your plumbing breaks, or if the heating system is out-of-date.  Ensuring your home is prepped properly can save you money while protecting your property for years to come.  Think in terms of three steps to a safe season

  • Prep the Plumbing – Drain the water from your outdoor faucets and garden hoses. Identify any problem pipes that are prone to freezing and consider using heat tape to keep them warm.  Be sure everyone in the family knows how to turn off the water at the source.
  • Heating – If you enjoy cozy evenings by a crackling fire, be sure your fireplace is ready.  Have the chimney inspected and cleaned by a chimney sweep. Consider a routine professional check of the heating system.  This check-up should include vacuuming the vents and other heating components.  Check and replace the furnace filter.  Installing a setback thermostat that keeps the home cooler when you are asleep or away is a cost saver.
  • Seal the Leaks – Keep drafts to a minimum this winter.  Install storm windows if you have them.  Add or replace weather stripping around doors and windows and caulk any gaps.  If any pipes or ducts travel through an exterior wall, be sure to use caulking and weather-stripping all-around entry points.  These steps help to block any potential entry points for cold air.

We at Barbara Popp Real Estate Services hope these ideas and hints help prepare you for an enjoyable holiday and the winter weather to come.  The entire Barbara Popp team is thankful for our customers, families, friends, and neighbors and would like to wish you a happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving.