Once the long winter is over, people begin thinking about the outdoor activities they will soon enjoy. You can get a head start on your plans by doing a thorough assessment of your property as soon as the worst of the winter is over.
Here is a good checklist:
Roof and Gutter Damage
If you have had significant snowfall or icing during the winter, you should have your roof and gutters inspected for small problems that could lead to larger issues in the future. Heavy icing can damage your gutter system, rusting connectors and causing a hazard to anyone standing or walking below.
Outdoor Porches, Decks, and Patios
The outdoor structures on your home, such as porches, decks, and patios, may have experienced wear and tear from the moisture and weight of snow. These structures should be carefully inspected to ensure that the wood floors and railings are intact and secure. Problems, especially structural ones, should be repaired immediately so that you can enjoy your summer and spring safely.
The winter snow and ice may have pulled down a number of branches from your trees and shrubs. In some cases, the damage will be complete, while in other cases, pruning may be all that’s needed to stabilize these plants. If broken limbs have caused a safety issue, you might be able to restore the integrity of these plants on your own; but if the damage is significant, contact a tree and landscaping professional to ensure the repair is done right. Once this aspect is safely remedied, you will be able to remove the minor leaf and twig debris in readiness for spring lawn maintenance and gardening.
If you are an avid gardener, you probably await the thaw with eager anticipation. As soon as most of the snow has melted, you can assess your garden and find areas for new plantings. Homeowners often find that garden beds and fencing need repairs or tidying before the planting can begin. Make a list of supplies, such as additional top soil, new fencing, landscape cloth, or other items that can help you get a head start on your gardening efforts.
Homeowners should also take a stroll around the perimeter of the home to inspect the condition of the foundation. The freezing and thawing of the ground around foundation walls can widen small cracks that let in moisture. After inspecting the exterior, also check the interior walls to note any changes in the condition, and make note of any increase in moisture inside the home.
Outdoor Play Equipment
Homeowners should begin inspecting outdoor play areas and equipment immediately after the worse of the snowfall. Children are likely to start using these areas of the yard at the first sign of warm weather. To prevent accidents from damaged or hazardous equipment, check the chains or ropes on tree swings and play sets; inspect metal surfaces for rusting, breakage, and sharp edges; and check fasteners and connectors on all parts of the equipment. Also check the surface below swings, slides, and other components to make sure they are free of hazards. You may wish to resurface this area to ensure a “soft landing.”
Maintaining these areas of your property will allow you to begin enjoying outdoor activities as soon as warmer temperatures arrive. You will also ensure your family’s safety, which will give you peace of mind as you tend to other tasks.
When you need help, remember to Just Say Sela!