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story.lead_photo.caption Left-behind leaves will potentially corrode a lawn post snowfall.

With frigid temperatures settling in, now is the perfect time to properly prepare the home -- the first day of winter is Dec. 21. Here are some key tips to keep in mind.

  1. Consider installing heat tape or using a heat tracing system. This can be critical in preventing freezing pipes in the case of a home that is seldom used such as a part-time or weekend residence.

  2. Drain outdoor hoses and faucets. These should be winterized as soon as possible to prevent freezing.

  3. Trim landscaping. This will help ensure a full, lush spring landscape.

  4. Rake leaves. This is important in helping to maintain a lush, green lawn come spring. Left-behind leaves will potentially corrode a lawn post snowfall.

  5. Finish any outdoor repairs.

  6. Replace or make sure windows and doors are airtight. Typically heat escapes through windows and doors.

  7. Check oil and gas levels. You will want to make sure heating sources such as oil and gas are replenished in case of power outages.

  8. Trim large trees and branches. In instances of ice, large branches are a hazard should they break and fall.

  9. Repair potholes and damage to driveways and sidewalks. Large holes and damage can be a potential tripping hazard or cause tire damage.

  10. Check your furnace and water heater. These pieces of equipment are typically used to capacity in colder months and you will want to make sure they are in full working order.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C.

HomeStyle on 12/08/2018

Print Headline: Get home ready to face the cold

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