CAN-Do Checklist, Using This Time Wisely

So much of the current news is full of what we cannot do, and for good reason – it’s working! Let’s not forget there is also plenty that we CAN do. Now, more than ever, we need to remain positive and use this time wisely. Before you know it, we’ll be back to our routines and maybe wishing we had done a bit more with our time while ‘stuck’ at home.

For many, doing our part by staying home provides an opportunity for spring cleaning and de-cluttering. Tackling a spring to-do (or can-do) list can lift spirits, create a fresh space to enjoy, and free up valuable time to enjoy your favorite summer activities (it’s coming!).

While you’re at it, this is a good time to take a closer look around your home and note anything that may need some attention. As with most repairs, early detection is key to the least expensive solution. This gift of time may help you identify some potentially costly repairs if left unnoticed. Make a list of anything that’s not a DIY project. Contact those service providers right away, before they are released back to work. Waiting may prove difficult to get on busy contractor’s schedules.

TAKE IT OUTSIDE

  • Clean walkways, driveway, porches and decks.
  • Trim plants and shrubs back from the side of the home or overhanging the roof.
  • Weed beds and add new mulch.
  • Add some contrast and color with plants and flowers.
  • Consider painting the front door or replacing worn out hardware.
  • Add some colorful potted plants to the front porch or steps.

While you’re at it…

  • Inspect the roof for any signs of compromised or missing shingles, flashing that doesn’t appear firmly attached, and moss or debris buildup.
  • Check that gutters and downspouts are firmly secured, free of debris, and properly sloped. Organic buildup or discoloration are signs there may be a blockage or they aren’t properly diverting water from the house.
  • If you have a chimney, check for any mortar or brick damage. Is the chimney cap and spark arrestor secure.
  • Inspect soffits (or eaves), looking for discoloration, cracks, wood rot, peeling paint, or anything that appears compromised. Continue your way down paying attention to siding and trim. Look for cracked or missing pieces of siding, signs of pest intrusion (birds, rodents, and insect), peeling paint, and mildew build-up.
  • Check around windows and doors. Make sure there aren’t any air leaks or failed caulking. Look for cracked or broken windows, or condensation/fogging between double pane windows.
  • Inspect decks and fences for loose or cracked boards and support pieces, missing nails, and mildew.
  • The foundation is often overlooked, yet such an important element in supporting the rest of the home. Look for signs of uneven settling or cracks. Look for indicators that water may not be properly diverted away from the home or ponding alongside the foundation.

DE-CLUTTER AND ORGANIZE (great projects for those rainy days!)

  • One at a time, tackle closets, bathroom vanities, under the kitchen sink, pantry, and garage/storage space. Wherever there is a door hiding the contents, clutter tends to accumulate.
  • Have a donation box nearby. Items that are no longer needed or haven’t been used or worn in a year, add to the box. Properly dispose of old cleaning supplies, paint, make-up, or prescriptions.
  • Re-organize the remaining contents and return to the respective shelf or drawer.
  • Group all items to be donated somewhere out of sight until it can be collected or dropped off at your preferred charity.

WINDOWS & DOORS

  • Wash the windows, inside and outside.
  • Clean door and window frames and tracks.
  • Check for air leaks, caulk as needed.
  • Check for condensation, properly working locks and hinges, and that windows open properly.
  • Remove storm windows and repair damaged screens.
  • Clean blinds and curtains.

FLOORS

  • Deep clean hard surface floors.
  • Shampoo carpeting and area rugs.
  • Wipe down baseboards.

BATHROOMS & KITCHENS

  • Deep clean fixtures, countertops, cabinets, and appliances.
  • Re-caulk around sinks and tub/shower as needed.
  • Don’t forget to disinfect light switches, doorknobs, and faucets – all high touch areas that harbor germs.

While you’re at it…

  • Much like outside, keep your eyes open for areas of concern that may be evident inside the home. If the attic is accessible, start here. Signs of mold, mildew, or moisture on the sheeting and insulation are all indicators the roof might be leaking.
  • Check for ducting that may not be sealed. This includes ducting from kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans. These should be securely attached and vented out the roof or side of the home.
  • Roof leaks often go undetected inside closets or may be evident around door and window frames and exhaust covers in kitchens and baths. Check these areas for moisture or discoloration.
  • Heating season is nearing an end. Replace furnace filters now and you’ll be ahead of the game this fall.
  • Test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. Change the batteries, if due.
  • Check for air leaks around electrical outlets and plumbing sites on exterior walls. Seal as needed.

Take advantage of this extra time now. You’ll enjoy summer that much more once you are free to get out and socialize, AND all your spring cleaning and repairs are completed or ready to be scheduled.

Keep in mind, some things are considered essential services and still allowed at this time. We can help connect you with cleaning/disinfecting services, repairs to plumbing, electrical, and heating/air-conditioning systems, repairs due to water intrusion or leaks, and some exterior cleaning of roofs and gutters.

Items that leave your home vulnerable to further degradation if left unchecked are likely considered essential. If you’re not sure, give us a call at 425-775-9085. We’re open and available to answer any questions.

If you need assistance with any of these projects or upgrades, we can connect you with the appropriate service professionals for your specific needs. Just let us know how we can help by completing our online Work Request.