Tips on Fall Chores in the Northwest

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Bain 3844 and 111684

Labor Day Weekend is here!  And with it comes preparations and beginning of fall chores around the home.  Here are a few quick tips to help get you started:

Clean your gutters and check for damage - water from an overflowing or broken gutter can erode the ground underneath your home's foundation, causing extensive cracking and sinking.  Downspouts should go to underground drainage pipes or lead away from your home – and work properly.  If the downspout simply dumps water at the base of your home, you’re probably doing more damage than not having gutters at all.  You'll want to clean gutters again when all leaves are down in late fall, but checking them out now will save you time later (and it wont be as cold!) This is probably one of the most important tips we could give you.

Get faucet covers out of storage or buy at the store – Have ready to install as cold weather approaches.  These are cheap, but effective means of preventing freezing pipes.

Check out your windows - Check for cracked paint along window sills, and if so, repair it! If you don't have time to repair, at least go around and paint primer on those cracks to minimize water penetration.  Water sitting all winter between old paint and wood surfaces will cause dry rot and create much larger problems later.

This short YouTube video from our friends over at DIY Network is terrific for tips on sealing up windows for winter.  Take a look!


Change out filters in your heating system – those vents have been collecting dust all summer!  Also, you may consider having your heating system serviced.  Do it before it gets cold, rather than waiting without heat for a day or two for the repair technician.

Vacuum out vents and heating ducts in the house – a perfect place for dust pollutants, and not to mention illnesses when you turn on heat the first time.

Have a fireplace? You may need to clean your chimney – the folks over at have a great little do-it-yourself test that may help determine if you need a cleaning or not.  Go to it here:

Get a programmable thermostat!!  If you don’t have one of these, you are wasting money – simple as that.  Set timer for only those hours you are at home and awake, and you’ll notice the difference on your heating bill.

Paint indoor rooms in September – if you are planning on painting a room or two, it will be too cold in later months to keep windows open for ventilation.

Repair and paint your stairs and deck – scrape, sand prime and paint weathered spots.  If you’re handy, repair any damages prior to painting, or get someone to help.

Inspect your home – walk around it, carefully examining details.  Bring a small ladder to look up on ledges and hard to see places.  Takes notes as you go, and work out a plan to get those items fixed.

Tackle any landscaping projects now – from splitting and transplanting perennials to pruning shrubs and trees.  This gives them a little time to re-establish prior to the dry air in winter. 

In Conclusion… there are so many potential chores you can do around your home that it can seem overwhelming, and even discouraging.  And we’ve only included a small sampling on this list.  Just start by making your own list. Prioritize it by the most critical items that must be done, and start there.  Enlist family and friends where you can, and you’ll be crossing off items from your list in no time.  Peace of mind on a cold winter day is a good thing! 

We'd love to hear from you. Have suggestions of your own? Share them here!


Posted by

See a home you like?  

Click on the QR Code to visit my mobile website and get instant access to information about homes for sale on the spot!

                                               George Roth Mobile Website QR Code


HomeTourClub       LinkedIn Logo   George Roth on Google+     HomeTourClub on YouTube   George Roth on Pinterest    ActiveRain Profile

George Roth, REALTOR®

Principal Managing Broker

Coldwell Banker Bain Anacortes

3110 Commercial Avenue, Suite #101

Anacortes, Washington  98221


 George Roth at Coldwell Banker Bain





Comments (18)

Rob D. Shepherd
Windermere/lane county - Florence, OR
Principal Broker GRI, SRES

While vacuuming out the heaters, take a few moments and vacuum the back of the fridge. "SUGGESTED"

Aug 30, 2012 11:56 PM
Reuben Fine
Fill-In-The-Blanks PDF Flyer Templates - Rossmoor, CA

Great list. It's time to start preparing for winter!


Aug 31, 2012 06:56 AM
Adrian Willanger
206 909-7536 - Seattle, WA
Profit from my two decades of experience

George, I can't believe fall has come to the NW. Great homeowner tips! Have a great holiday weekend. 

Aug 31, 2012 09:07 AM
Robert Haynes
Robert Haynes & Associates - Fishers, IN

Good reminder.  It's hard to believe that summer is already over!

Aug 31, 2012 11:33 AM
Hella Mitschke Rothwell
(831) 626-4000 - Honolulu, HI
Hawaii & California Real Estate Broker

George: You would think that you should do indoor projects during the winter months but not so. Do them before the rainy season. There is nothing worse than to be cooped up with paint smells and dust in the air from projects. Now is the time, as you say.

Aug 31, 2012 11:35 AM
BethAnn Long
RE/MAX Inland Empire - Spokane, WA
Realtor, CRS, e-PRO, Spokane Wa Real Estate

Hey from over on the other side of the Mountain's!

Great list of to-do'sfor FALL!

From one CB to another, take care!

BethAnn in Spokane

Aug 31, 2012 11:59 AM
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

I am exhausted just reading this list.  Lots of good tips.. now, all I need is to find the time to get them all done!

Aug 31, 2012 12:39 PM
Evelyn Kennedy
Alain Pinel Realtors - Alameda, CA
Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA


You list is good for all parts of the country.  I especially like your suggestion of walking the perimeter of your home.  My husband and I forget to do that.

Aug 31, 2012 02:42 PM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

George, a great list for getting the home ready for the Winter season. Thanks for the reminder.

Aug 31, 2012 11:26 PM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Your list of suggestions is certain to get the ball rolling...Now, to work on the action/implement plan

Sep 01, 2012 12:04 AM
Ben Gerritsen
Mortgage Miracles Happen, NMLS ID: 1289680 - Ogden, UT
Mortgage Loan Originator

Great checklist to follow every year. Don't wait to do items on this list if it's any other time of the year. If something needs to be done any other time of the year and you prolong doing the work til the fall, then you'll be over whelmed come then.

Sep 01, 2012 01:20 AM
Phil Leng
Retired - Kirkland, WA
Phil Leng - Retired

Hi george,

This is a great list of things to do before the Fall weather turns bad.

Thanks for the tips.


Sep 01, 2012 02:42 AM
George Roth and Don Elliott
Coldwell Banker Bain - Mount Vernon, WA
Real Estate Brokers

Wow, thanks for the comments, friends!

Rob, great suggestion on vacuuming back of frig.  I did that yesterday!


Sep 01, 2012 05:14 AM
Sandy Acevedo
951-290-8588 - Chino Hills, CA
RE/MAX Masters, Inland Empire Homes for Sale

Hi George, great post and comprehensive list of what to take of. Although, I hate the end of summertime....

Sep 01, 2012 07:49 AM
Kim Boekholder Utah Real Estate
Results Real Estate 801.580.5624 - Draper, UT
Broker, Results Real Estate

Great list, its beautiful this time of year in the northwest! enjoy 

Sep 01, 2012 08:00 AM
Debra Snoey
Principal Managing Broker, Coldwell Banker Bain - Kent, WA


Perfect timing!  I pulled the electronic air cleaner out of the unit and put it in the dishwasher, then vacuumed the fresh air intake vent, which was totally clogged with dust and pollen.

It's also time to get out the soup and crock pot recipes!  There are so many delicious fall meals you can prepare in the morning or on weekends and dinner is ready when you walk in the door.  Plus the smell is so welcoming!

Sep 09, 2012 04:42 AM
George Roth and Don Elliott
Coldwell Banker Bain - Mount Vernon, WA
Real Estate Brokers

Hi, Debra - glad to hear we could help with a reminder on your vent cleaning!  Crock pot food sounds great right about now!

Sep 10, 2012 05:10 AM