Fall means beautiful foliage, cozy sweaters, and backyard bonfires. It also means that homeowners should begin doing household tasks to prepare for the winter season. Depending on where you live, winter can bring harsh elements which can do damage if you are not prepared. There are some steps you can take to improve your backyard in preparation for winter. This helps protect your home and property while avoiding expensive repair bills. It is best to get started early because it can be challenging to find a professional during the holidays and winter. Consider these backyard home improvement ideas before the cold descends upon us.
Keep Pests Under Control
When thinking about backyard home improvement ideas, pest removal service may not be on the top of your list. You may think that pests disappear in the winter, so there is really no need. However, it is essential that you consider having pest control services because when they are not controlled, they will find a space inside your house during the winter. If they are not hibernating in your house, you may see more pests and insects coming inside than you would really like. Another consideration is that items like firewood and Christmas trees attract bugs, even in the winter. Every home should continue its pest control efforts all year long, but there are some specific types of houses or areas that may need it more. For example, if you have a cabin or live in an area that is more remote, your winter pest control needs are going to be higher than those who live in a city.
Remove Unwanted Trees
When you look across your backyard, do you see trees that you want to be removed? You could require tree removal for many reasons. The trees could be dead, dying, or in a place that is causing damage to your home. When looking for backyard home improvement ideas, removing unwanted trees is always a great option as you head into winter. A local tree removal service will explain that removing trees before or during winter is more manageable because most trees are in their dormant phase. It is easier to manage and remove them when they have lost their leaves. They are lighter, and the branches are easier to see for cutting purposes. This is the best time to have your trees inspected because cracks and other problems are easier to see.
As the ground becomes colder, it is easier to remove the trees from the ground. Other plants and trees tend to stay in place better when the ground is colder, so only the intended trees are removed. Winter can bring snow, ice, and hail. When you remove trees ahead of these weather conditions, you can potentially prevent storm damage to the trees and surrounding areas. If you believe you have trees that are not stable, it is a good idea to contact a local tree removal company to address those concerns before winter sets in.
Create an Aesthetically Pleasing Space
During the winter months, it is not unusual for your yard to look blah. It is not typically the lush soft green grass that you have in the spring and summer. However, that does not mean your backyard can’t look nice. When you are thinking about those backyard home improvement ideas as you head into winter, do not forget about your landscaping. There are some steps you can take to protect and care for your grass through the winter. This allows it to be at its best during the summer months. Winter care is a little hard, but absolutely possible. First, you want to be sure to aerate and fertilize your grass. Then you want to get cool season grass seed and water the grass. Your grass is best at a short to medium length through the winter. If you allow your grass to grow any taller, you can expect unwanted pests to make a home in your grass.
There are some other steps throughout fall and winter you should take. These include removing fallen leaves from your grass and landscaping. In addition, you want to keep salt away from your grass, sidewalks, and driveways. These steps protect your grass during the rough months of winter and help it look its best once the warm months roll in.
Add Solar Panels
If you have been considering adding solar panels to your home, the winter may be the best time to install them. In general, the winter is a slower time for the solar industry, so you may be able to get discounts, rebates, or sales when you install right before or during the winter season. In addition, some may think that solar panels can’t generate electricity during the winter because the sun is not strong enough. That is not true; you can generate solar power as soon as you turn on the panels.
Installers prefer to install solar panels during the cooler months because no one likes being on a hot roof. Right before winter hits is a great time for this type of installation. The roof is cooler, and there is no snow or ice yet. When you are thinking about all of those backyard home improvement ideas, do not forget about installing solar panels. Right before winter is a great time to consider solar repair for any of your panels that need replacement or repair. You should contact a professional and not try to take on the task of fixing your solar panels on your own.
Add an Outdoor Kitchen
When you are thinking about your backyard home improvement ideas as you head into winter, an outdoor kitchen may seem like a silly investment. However, there is no better time to plan your outdoor space than in the cooler months. If your outdoor space requires any type of construction or hardscaping, it may take a few months to finish the work. But, if you time it properly, it can be completed right when the days begin to heat up again. You can also enjoy your outdoor space in the winter even as the temperatures drop, and there is snow on the ground. For example, you can install a backyard fireplace or firepit to keep you and your family warm. Think about how nice it would be to sit in the warmth of your backyard space while watching the snowfall. Or even to be able to sit outside in the silence that comes with heavy snow while staying warm on your patio area.
If you already have an area with a fireplace or fire pit, there is some light maintenance you should do to prepare for the winter months. First, you want to ensure that you have plenty of firewood and a fire starter. Dense and slow-burning firewood is ideal. You want to ensure there is no debris around your firepit or fireplace. Finally, if there are any trees or bushes that could be a fire hazard, you want to trim them to keep them out of the way.
Create Entertainment Areas
If you are interested in adding an outdoor kitchen, fireplace, or firepit as one of your backyard home improvement ideas, you first need a place to put it all. If you do not already have a patio, that may need to be part of your design. If you already have one, then you have to build your additions on top of your existing patio area. You may be able to find contractors more easily during the cooler months as this tends to be a slower time for them. However, starting before winter is a smart choice if you want to have your outdoor space ready for the spring.
If you already have pavers on your deck or walkway, you want to provide some maintenance to ensure they remain safe through the winter. Snow and ice are not the only safety hazard. Leaves and debris can also cause people to slip and fall. You want to remove all of the leaves and debris that have fallen. You can contact a paving service to clean and seal your pavers for the winter. Leaves and dirt can stain your pavers if not addressed properly. You may want to have a professional assessment if your pavers need more joint sand. This helps to keep them in place and prevent them from shifting. You want to avoid using rock salt on your pavers and walkways. Instead, find paver-friendly alternatives.
Keep Your Space Safe
When you are considering all the possible backyard home improvement ideas for the winter season, do not forget to check for any safety issues or concerns. You want your outdoor space to remain safe for everyone. If you already have a deck in place, it is a great idea to have a deck inspection. If you already know your deck has problem areas, they will only get worse. You want to check the structure, which includes the supports, posts, and connections. You should look for any bent brackets, missing screws, or rusting bolts. You should also pay attention to any parts of the deck that are wobbling or missing parts, like spindles or support rails. You should also check all of the deckings for splitting, rotting, warping, or cracking. If you see any of these problem areas, you should contact a professional right away to have them repaired. Right before winter is a great time to clean your deck. First, you want to sweep all of the dirt, debris, and leaves from the deck. After that, you can hose down the deck to remove all the dirt sitting on top. Once that is complete, you should scrub it with mild soap and water to get off all the hard-to-remove stains. After your deck has been inspected, repaired, and cleaned, you want to protect it from the winter elements by applying a protective sealant.
Have the Roof Replaced
When you are considering any backyard home improvement ideas, you cannot overlook the roof. The roof is one of the essential elements of your house. If you know you already have problem areas on your roof, it is time to contact a roofing company to have it assessed. You want to address these areas before winter weather and storms hit. Snow and ice can be heavy on a roof. If your roof is already compromised, it may not be able to withstand the extra weight. While it may seem like a significant expense, you should consider replacing your roof instead of trying to make it through another season. The last thing you want is a leak in the house because your roof has a hole in it. Contact a professional roofing company to get an assessment of your roof to determine the next best steps to protect your home.
We can’t talk about backyard home improvement ideas without mentioning fences. There are many benefits to having a fence in your yard. Not only does it add a touch of class, but it also provides a good amount of privacy. Wood privacy fences can prevent people from looking into your backyard. It also stops unwanted guests from strolling into your backyard without permission. In addition, a fence helps to outline your property and gives it boundaries. When you have a fence, it is clear where your property is. Like many other contractors, fence companies tend to be a little slower during the colder months. However, you may be able to get a discount for having one installed right before winter.
As you begin to prepare your home and property for the winter months, consider these ideas to help improve and protect your backyard and home.