Fall Home Maintenance Guide 2020

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It’s October and we’re still out here enjoying spectacular weather. Translation: it doesn’t seem possible that we should be thinking  about prepping for the winter months ahead. 

But here we are!

We hope this quick checklist will help you button up a few items in and around your home because one morning, you will wake up to 6-feet of snow because this is Maine….

The Property

Clean Out The Gutters:  You did this in the Spring but it is time to repeat the process. It is well worth spending a few hours up on a ladder to perform seasonal gutter maintenance to prevent water damage, rot, and other long-term issues. 

Cracks in Your Driveway:  If you avoided this task in April, we advise you to refer back to our Spring Maintenance Guide blog for a deeper dive into concrete cracks. Remember, thaws and freezes will continue spreading, widening, and deepening cracks which can lead to bigger problems down the road. 

Fertilize your lawn and gardens: When you have harvested the last of your root veggies and cherry tomatoes, be sure to give that garden a proper shut-down. 

Time’s Up, Patio: Or is it? This might be the saddest of tasks considering that, more than ever, we appreciate our outdoor spaces. Depending on the quality and heartiness of the materials, many are opting to keep entertaining outside due to COVID-19. However,  to maintain the life of the patio furniture you’ve invested in, taking the time to wipe down and store them properly is worth the effort if your set is not meant for winter conditions! This includes summer flower pots.

The Home

Weather Stripping: Little acts of air sealing go a long way. Drafty doors and windows are responsible for 25-30 %  of heating energy use, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.  

  • Feel for drafts and weatherstrip around doors. If you have older, less-efficient windows, consider inserts. 

  • Check out WindowDressers, a volunteer-driven non-profit organization dedicated to helping Maine residents reduce heating costs, fossil fuel consumption, and CO-2 emissions by lowering the amount of heat loss through windows

    Clean your Chimney: October is National Fire Safety month.If you operate a wood stove in your home, it is critical you have your chimney properly cleaned before the heating season comes. To find a reputable chimney sweep in your area, check out this list.

Check & Change Batteries: Whether you have enjoyed open windows or AC this summer, closing up your home opens up various risks.

  • Check to make sure all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide devices are working properly. 

  • To learn more about home safety during COVID-19, check out Manage your home to prevent COVID-19in the September 2020 issue of Green & Healthy Homes.

    Winterize, Store, and Test Equipment: Winter happens FAST here in Maine. You really don’t want any surprises when that first November blizzard blows in!

  • Drain and store your lawnmower, weedwackers, sprinklers, etc for the season and bring out the snowblower.

  • After sitting all summer,  these  tools might require some tune-ups so be sure to test them out to make sure they are running properly and ready. 

Top off Fuel: If you have the ability to fill up your oil and propane tanks this is a great time to do so. We are currently experiencing a 16-year low low in fuel oil prices according to this October 22 Press Herald article. The average statewide cash price for heating oil earlier this week was $1.89 a gallon, down 31% from January. Additionally, you want to avoid running low during critical times such as deep freeze/blizzard conditions  or the height of holiday cooking. 




Our team of real estate professionals works with a variety of local landscaping, pest removal, and home repair experts. If you need local guidance on property maintenance, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. Our Team is here for you.

Be Well.

Vitalius Real Estate Group Team