As the temperatures start to drop and the days become shorter, the idea of spending more time indoors becomes increasingly appealing. We begin to crave the cosiness and comfort of our homes and ditch our usual outings for calm and relaxing evenings. There’s nothing quite like snuggling on the couch, wrapped in a warm blanket while sipping on a cup of tea, away from the harsh cold outside.
That’s a lovely way to spend your winter days, but before you start dreaming about long evenings in front of the fireplace, you need to make sure your home is ready to accommodate your vision. It’s best to begin winter preparations sooner rather than later if you don’t want to find yourself running around doing errands during a blizzard.
So, if you still haven’t prepared for the cold months ahead, here’s a short guide on how to create a home oasis that will keep you safe and warm and help you fight the traditional winter blues.
Pre-winter repairs, inspections and maintenance tasks
You need to prepare both the outside and the inside of your home to make sure it’s going to withstand the harsh winter season and all the adverse weather conditions it may bring your way, from freezing temperatures and heavy snow to ice, blizzards or strong winds. So, you’ll obviously need to start with the practical aspects first and tackle all the necessary fixes and maintenance tasks.
Check your roof
Inspecting your roof for signs of damage is one of the first steps you need to take when winterizing your home. A careful visual inspection will help you spot potential issues such as rust spots, missing or broken shingles, decay, or damaged chimney cap. If you can’t access the roof, you can get a professional to carry out the inspection for you and fix any damages they might encounter.
Clean your gutters
Cleaning your gutters is a maintenance job you should perform several times a year, depending on your home’s specific needs, but you should never skip the pre-winter cleaning session. You’ll want to have your gutters cleared out before temperatures fall below the freezing point in order to prevent ice dams from forming and the damage they may cause.
Protect your pipes
Cold weather can cause pipes outside of your home to freeze, and that increases the risk of dealing with a burst. Fortunately, there’s a simple way to address this issue by insulating the pipes in your garage, attic or any other area of your home where they are exposed to cold temperatures.
Clean your chimney
If you’re lucky enough to own a fireplace, you need to make sure it’s in proper functioning condition before you build a crackling fire. Rather than testing your handyman skills and doing the job yourself, you should hire a professional who can inspect the chimney and clean it properly to make sure you won’t experience any issues later on.
Tend to your garden
Don’t forget about the outdoor space! Your garden requires just as much attention and care as your home before winter settles in. Start by cutting back tree branches and storing away your summer garden equipment. If you have plants that can’t survive the cold winter temperature, you’ll need to get them inside. You may need to debug them, transfer them into new planters and give them time to acclimatize to ensure a smooth transition.
Draft-proof your home
In order to keep your house warm and cosy and your energy bills low, you need to keep the cold air from entering your house. Draft-proofing your home implies sealing the gaps around your doors and windows where cold air may sneak in by using weather stripping and caulk. This is a simple task that doesn’t require much time and effort, so you can handle it yourself. however, if these quick fixes don’t solve the draft issue, you may have to consider replacing your old windows and doors with new ones.
Decorating tips for cosy vibes
Now onto the fun part. After you’ve tackled all the above-mentioned items on your home winterizing list, you can finally switch your focus to interior design and décor. There are numerous ways to create a warm and welcoming feel in every room of your house without spending a fortune.
If you’re willing to put some effort into transitioning your home from summer to fall or winter, you can follow one of the oldest tricks in the book and add a fresh coat of paint to your interiors. For the best results, choose deep and warm hues like orange, red or yellow. If you’re worried this might be too much, you can use brighter colours for the rest of the décor to ensure chromatic balance.
A very simple and effective way to cheer up the atmosphere and create a lovely winter oasis is to add some winter flower pots around the house, so you can enjoy the joys of nature even when it’s too cold to go outside. Make sure to give your plants the care and attention they need during the colder season so they can grow strong and healthy.
Another fool-proof idea to give your home a cosy winter vibe is to use as many warm and soft blankets, pillows and throws as you want and place them on your chairs, couches, bed and in front of the fireplace. Add some scented candles that you can light up in the evening, and you’ve got yourself a warm and inviting cocoon where you can nestle every time you feel the need to escape the outside world and the winter cold.
Getting your home ready for winter is not as difficult as it may seem. The trick is to start early on so you can have enough time to check all the boxes on your to-do list and create the warm and cosy ambience you’re looking for.