How to Winterize Your Vacation Home
You’re done staying at your summer vacation home for the year and it’s time to prepare it for the cold season. It’s important to protect your vacation home and your belongings from the elements, from thieves, and from pest damage. These are our recommendations for how to winterize your vacation home.
Before you leave for the winter, deep clean the home. Make sure that everything is dry, as well, so that the home stays fresh. Wash your linens and store them so they do not suffer pest damage or get musty smells. Pack dry goods in containers or take them with you. Remove perishable items from the refrigerator. Leave everything clean and organized so that when you come back after the winter, everything will be in its place and ready for you to use again.
Shut Off the Water
In order to prevent damage from freezing, shut off the water on your property. Then, drain as much water from the pipes as you can by opening the valves once the water is off. If the pipes are not full of water, your pipes will be less likely to crack due to freezing water expanding. Flush the toilets after you shut off the water so the standing water drains out. If there is any water you can’t drain, you can prevent freezing with some non-toxic antifreeze.
To prevent your home from getting too cold, which can cause freezing damage, you’ll want to take some measures to regulate the temperature. The first thing you can do is ensure your insulation is effective. Fill in any gaps in the insulation and make repairs as necessary. Then, keep your heater set to around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. The goal is not to keep the house warm, but to keep it from getting overly cold.
Trim the Trees
If there are branches or trees that pose a threat to your home, it’s wise to take care of that before you leave for the season. The weight of snow and ice combined with the wind from storms make breakage more likely in winter. Fallen trees can cause catastrophic damage to your vacation home, so inspect your property for dead trees or precarious limbs near the home and have them removed. You may be able to safely remove threatening trees and branches on your own, but you might need to hire a professional to take care of it for you. The cost of removal will be far less than the cost of repairing your house after a fallen tree disaster. Call us at Team French for local tree and brush removal recommendations.
Protect Your Home and Belongings
If you have anything outside, such as outdoor furniture, tools, or equipment, secure it in a safe place. A shed or storage room with a lock would both be good places to keep these things. Put your belongings away to prevent theft and to protect them from the elements and from animals. Even your things that are kept inside the home should be stored and protected. Insects, dust, freezing temperatures and sun damage all pose a threat to some of your personal belongings and outdoor furnishings. Bring items in or store them under your home to help protect them. Keep items that are susceptible to damage or theft appropriately secured in airtight and/or lockable containers. Finally, of course, lock all your windows and doors before you leave.
You’re all set to enjoy your winter, resting and secure in the knowledge that your vacation property is safer and protected for the season! Let us know if you are considering investing in a vacation home or selling your property in Gold Country. We at Team French are happy to help with all your questions and needs when it comes to real estate in the area. Reach out to us at (209) 303-7637 or email@example.com for a consultation or for a quick chat!