As we prepare for the winter season with recipes for holidays feasts and shopping for holiday gifts, it is important to remember to protect your most valuable possession - Your Home. To add to your ongoing Honey-Do List of House Maintenance, here is a maintenance checklist for getting your home ready for the winter months:


  • Check ceiling and surfaces around windows for evidence of moisture
  • Check caulking around showers, bathtubs, sinks, and toilet base
  • Check all stairs and railings for any loose members
  • Test all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Know the location of all gas shut-off valves

Electrical -

  • Periodically check for exposed wiring and cable, and replace as necessary
  • Trip circuit breaker and ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) to ensure proper function
  • Learn location of electrical service panels and label each circuit
  • If fuses blow, circuit breakers trip frequently, contact a licensed electrician for repairs

Heating and Cooling 

  • Clean or change furnace filters (this should be done every 3 months)
  • Lubricate fan and motor bearings (only where indicated) and listen for unusual noises
  • For broiler systems, check water level and shut-off valve for leaks
  • Have system serviced annually prior to the start of the season

Doors and Windows 

  • Check for loose or missing glazing putty or worn weather stripping
  • Check caulking for deterioration at the openings and joints between dissimilar materials (i.e. wood and masonry)
  • Check for broken glass and damaged or missing screens

Plumbing -

  • Check all faucets, hose bibs, and supply valves for leakage
  • Check for evidence of leaks around and under sinks, showers, toilets, and tubs
  • Check lawn sprinkler system for leaky valves and exposed lines
  • Have the septic tank cleaned every 2 years
  • Have the well water checked for quality
  • Check the main water shut-off valve for operation and leakage 

Foundation and Exterior - 

  • Check foundation walls and floors for cracking, heaving, spalling, deterioration
  • Check chimney for loose, deteriorated, or missing mortar or bricks
  • Check basement and crawlspace for moisture or leaks
  • Check all wood surfaces, decks, patios, porches, stairs, and railings for deterioration

Roof - 

  • Check for any missing, loose or damaged shingles, open seams, blisters, or bald area on flat roofs
  • Clean gutters, strainers, and downspouts; trim back tree limbs and vegetation
  • Check the attic for any evidence of leaks
  • Check flashing, fascia and soffits for deterioration or damage

If you need some resources for locating your Honey Do Specialists when you're own Honey-Wont-Do, Contact me 


Masha Halpern and The Smart Move Team is your ultimate real estate resource for Chapel HillDurhamCarrboro and surrounding areas. Visit my website at for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Masha is a certified member of The Luxury Home Marketing Institute, participates in its annual Leaders in Luxury Conference, and works with The Institute’s thousands of members worldwide to share information about current listings.

Masha is also a certified member of Keller Williams Luxury International and is Chapel Hill & Durham's EXCLUSIVE member of Cyber Stars International – Top Realtors Using Technology – a group dedicated to taking the best and latest technological advances and applying them to real estate advertising and marketing for her clients in all price pointsMasha Halpern can be contacted for a private consultation by calling 919-414-0337 or by visiting