Take action today. Call our experts at: phone icon1-800-522-5221


8 Tips to Get Your Home Ready for Spring


Many people consider the vernal equinox as the “official” first day of spring. This year, it occurs on Monday, March 18, at 5:24 p.m. ET. Along with the first day of spring comes warmer weather, which means changing your daily routines and home maintenance plans to account for more sun and, in some areas, thawing of winter’s ice and snow.

Wherever you are, with spring on the horizon, it’s a good time to ask if your home is ready for the transitional, warmer weather. Here are some simple tips to prepare your home — some you may not have considered.

Related: 5 Moving Tips to Ease Your Next PCS


1. Clean Rain Gutters and Downspouts

Get your work gloves, garbage bags and ladder ready. While cleaning the rain gutters is never a pleasant job, it’s something that must be done to ensure the spring rains can move through your rain gutter system so that clogs do not lead to water damage in your home. Once you’ve removed any material that has collected in the gutter, be sure to check for any holes or cracks. If your gutters are high enough to require a tall ladder, consider hiring a professional to do the job.

The important thing is to schedule and knock this job off your list early before any damage occurs from backed-up rainwater.

2. Check and Clean Windows and Shutters

Windows and shutters are a focal point of your home’s exterior. You’ll want to clean them to remove wintertime residue and check for peeling paint or tears in your screens. If there’s no damage, you can rinse away dirt and residue with your garden hose. And while you’re at it, check your hose for cracks or leaks, then buy a hose reel if you don’t have one to keep your hose out of the summer sunlight when not in use. While you’re outside, it’s also a good opportunity to change out your grill’s propane tank so your backyard is ready for springtime cookouts.

Finally, take a close look at your outdoor lighting fixtures to make sure they’re in good repair and functioning properly with all bulbs working.

3. Prep Your Garden

A nice benefit to warmer weather is enjoying your yard and gardens again. Be sure to clear out any dead plants or debris and cut back any tree limbs that are growing where they shouldn’t be (like over your house or garage). If you plan to use garden beds, start preparing your soil for planting flowers, produce or other plants. Martha Stewart offers tips for beginners to help you get started. But also keep in mind that if you’re renting your home, you’ll want to keep costs to a minimum and/or consult with your landlord before investing in any new plants or decor, such as a fountain.

If an outdoor garden is too much effort, consider planting a small one in moveable pots or opt for an indoor herb garden or plants that can really make your home feel fresher.

4. Wash Off, Repair or Replace Outdoor Furniture

This is the time to bring out your patio or backyard furniture and give it a good look. Check for splinters from rough wood or mold in any cushions. For the most part, you’ll be able to use a mixture of water and mild detergent to clean your outdoor furniture. But if it looks worse for the wear, you may need to use an all-purpose cleaner to break through tough dirt and grime. If your upholstery can’t be thrown in the washing machine, try using a mixture of three parts water to one part powdered laundry detergent on a sponge to scrub away tough stains.

Once your furniture is clean, consider its overall condition and make any minor repairs, such as tightening screws or patching holes. If the damage is more extensive, it may be time to replace those items.


5. Clean the Dryer Vent

Fires that start from clogged clothes dryer vents with built-up lint and washing machines are more common than you might think. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that dryers and washing machines cause an average of 15,970 fires each year, with dryers causing 92% of them and an average of $200 million in property damage.

In most cases, the process to clean the vent is simple. Home Depot offers these steps to help. If your dryer vents to the roof, check the flapper at the roof vent where lint build-up can cause partial blockages that will affect the performance of the machine.

Related: 5 Home Problems You Need to (and SHOULD) Walk Away From

6. Replace Filters and Alarm Batteries

There are plenty of filters in your home that should be changed every six months or so, depending on the type you use. The furnace filter is one that probably comes to mind, and Lowe’s offers these tips for changing them. There may be others, too, including the filter for your refrigerator water, range hood, and microwave bottom’s grease filter (here are cleaning and replacement tips from Whirlpool, but you should follow your manufacturer’s recommendations). It’s also a good time to change the batteries in your smoke and/or carbon monoxide alarms.

If you have an alarm system installed in your home, it’s a good time to run a test to be sure everything is working properly.

7. Declutter

There are spaces in the house — think garage, attic, or basement — where we stash things quickly so they’re out of the way, and then forget all about them. If you let those items accumulate too long, not only can they become overwhelming heaps of clutter (and possible fire hazards) but next year you won’t know where the Santa for the roof went, or if you actually have extra paint to touch up that downstairs bathroom. It’s important to stay on top of these storage areas and not let them become unusable.

Spring is the perfect time to take stock of items you’ve stored and decide what to clean and keep and what to toss or replace.

8. Freshen Decor

It’s always exciting to refresh your home decor for spring — change your curtains, buy new throw pillows or blankets, or give old furniture new life with a fresh coat of paint or stain. Freshening a room doesn’t have to be time-consuming or expensive. You can start with a deep clean and check for damage to paint, carpets or flooring. When it comes to decor, you can create a focal point with an interesting piece of furniture or work of art (here are some ideas from Spruce.com to get your creative juices flowing).

Easy ways to update a room for spring include lightening with texture and color, changing out your artwork and throw pillows, and adding fresh plants or flowers.

We’re Here to Help

Whether you’re thinking about buying, ready to start home-shopping in earnest, or considering a refinance, an AAFMAA Mortgage Services (AMS) Military Mortgage Advisor will be happy to provide you with an honest and fair comparison of your mortgage options, including a wide range of affordable mortgages designed to meet your needs.

Ensuring AAFMAA Members obtain the best mortgage possible is our mission. Get your free mortgage assessment today or give us a call at 844-422-3622!