Along with the New Year comes those dreadful and boring annual home maintenance chores. However, by having a seasonal home and garden checklist, you can avoid the high cost of major repairs for runaway problems. So, in addition to maintaining your yard with the proper pruning, fertilizing and upkeep, it’s important to keep a checklist for your home. Some important things to do include checking and cleaning your appliances and updating your security system.

Other things most homeowners overlook are their heating and cooling systems, such as the electrical, solar or gas. It’s important to keep your home in top condition and a maintenance schedule helps everything to run smoothly through the year. Read on to learn more, so you and your family will stay safe and comfortable.

Change the Filters

If the air filters in your home are hard-to-reach, ask someone to hold a ladder or help you reach them. Cleaning the furnace filter makes your heating and cooling unit work better. If necessary, hire a professional HVAC technician to regularly check filters, and maintain and repair your equipment.

You don’t need a professional to change filters or to inspect the tub and sink for debris. Although it’s not safe for children to change filters or climb ladders, get them involved by talking about home maintenance issues.

Seal the Cracks and Gaps

Another easy thing for a homeowner to do is to seal all the cracks in your windows and doors with weatherstripping material. Also, fix any holes in your walls. You can put plastic door stoppers in place, so no one hits the walls with the door knobs.

Throughout the winter, be sure to remove the snow and ice from your sidewalks as soon as you can. Also, change your light bulbs to environmentally-friendly ones. Clean your blinds by thoroughly by dusting them and use a steam cleaner on the carpet, too.

However, it’s important to be careful and know your limits. While working on your home and garden checklist, enlist in professional help to do the chores you know are beyond your limits, like power washing your home siding, inspecting your roof or cleaning your chimney. After all the home maintenance work, choose a fun home improvement project that isn’t too difficult.  You could paint a room or install a decorative kitchen backsplash.

If you want to learn how to do some of these tasks, there are many helpful videos on YouTube. Also, visit your local library for a how-to book or DVD. And lastly, many home improvement stores and websites offer home and garden classes to help homeowners learn about new projects.