Spring Spruce Up Time

There’s something rejuvenating about spring. After months of cold and dreary weather, many of us feel an urge to spruce up our homes and embrace the energy that comes with the new season. But it can be difficult to know where to begin to give your space a fresh feel. Here are some ideas for how to begin your own Spring Spruce Up.

Start With a Clean Slate

Giving your home a thorough cleaning not only will make it look better but also will prolong the life of its exterior.

Start at the top by cleaning leaves and debris off the roofcleaning the gutters, and clearing the downspouts. Then turn your attention to your home’s windows and doors. Give windows and window screens a good cleaning, and clean and lubricate the window tracks. While you’re at it, lubricate exterior lockshinges, gates, and garage door tracks.

Clear away shrubbery from the AC condenser unit, so it has a little room to breathe. Over time leaves, dirt and debris build up on the outside of the air conditioner unit, decreasing system capacity and reducing air flow. After shutting off the power to the unit, use a garden hose to gently wash out the debris. You don’t want to use a power washer for this job, as the pressure could bend or damage the delicate fins on the coil. Replace your AC air filters.

For many surfaces pressure washing is an effective ay to wash away grime and mildew left behind from harsh winter weather. This can include siding, sidewalks, driveways, fences, decks and patios.

Patio furniture and cushions may need scrubbing or replacement if they’ve faded or have irremovable mildew stains.

Outdoor kitchens and grills need a good cleaning and possibly paint.

Make Outdoor Repairs

Start by inspecting wood surfaces for rot or chipping paint. Inspect exterior metal surfaces, as they can rust more quickly due to moisture.

Now is the time to make repairs to damaged roof shingles and gutters, wooden fences, loose trim and mailboxes. If you have an irrigation system, turn the outdoor water back on, and test it to make sure everything is working properly. 

This is a good time to evaluate whether or not all or part of your home needs repainting. Repainting areas of siding or trim isn’t only something to do during a renovation. This is a simple task you can tackle any time of year—but especially after the winter months have passed.

Water is commonly found in basements and can ruin the usable space quickly. Investigating any cracks or watermarks on the exterior as well as the walls or ceilings inside might lead to professional water remediation and foundation repair, but this type of moisture intrusion cannot be ignored. It will not only damage the basement’s usability but will bring dangerous mold into the equation. Sump pump and dehumidifier functions and filters may need  attention as well.

Boost Curb Appeal

Boost your home’s curb appeal with some simple upgrades that make a big impact.

While your trees and shrubs are still bare, give them a good pruning. “You want to lift the canopy, remove the lower limbs off your trees to let the light in,”

Prune back ornamental grasses and some perennials, too, so the new growth does not get mixed up with brown, dead remnants.

Now time for spring lawn maintenance. Get rid of any dead grass, add a fresh layer of topsoil, and reseed the area so grass can start to grow again. Consider aerating and fertilizing your lawn. Edge your lawn and around any existing flower beds. Take a look at the mulch in your flower beds. It may need to be replenished.

You will need to wait to plant most vegetables and annuals until the danger of frost has passed in your area. However, by March or April you should be able to plant new perennials, annuals and vegetables.

Maybe it’s time to add a new seating or dining area to your outside space. Or go get that firepit you have been thinking about.  

Spring cleaning isn’t just about making your home cleaner. It’s also about preparing your home for spring and keeping it in good repair.

As with most homeownership chores, exterior spring maintenance can be an overwhelming job for a single weekend. It’s best to tackle tasks in a logical order, depending on the time you have available to complete. Remember that professionals are taking appointments from other homeowners who need the same repairs and updates as you, so don’t put it off!

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