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You’re ready for spring but is your house?-D&C Article-March 16, 2015

You’re ready for spring—but is your house?
RHBA Home and Garden Show
This story is produced and presented by our [Democrat & Chronicle] sponsor.

After the coldest February on record, it’s finally the right time to start working on a few projects to prepare your yard and home for spring (so you’ll be ready to plant petunias come May!) Here are some key tips to help get you started:

Clean Your Gutters

Inspect your downspouts and gutters before the spring rains start to be sure they’re clear of leaves, tree limbs and other debris that might have collected there since late fall. Clogging usually occurs at the elbow in a drainage system, where the downspout connects to the gutter. Since this elbow is relatively easy to remove, take it off and have a look.

Give it a Sweep and a Shine

Once the snow melts, sweep walkways and porches, tighten wobbly railings, and repaint posts and supports. (Read the label, but with most paints you only need a sunny afternoon in the mid-50s to splash on a coat of paint to freshen things up.) Clean all exterior light fixtures and consider replacing standard bulbs with energy-saving bulbs.

Outdoor Furniture

You’ll want to be ready to soak up those first warm rays of spring sunshine, so get a head start. Spray or paint a fresh coat of paint on furniture and replace the cushions. Shop antique/thrift stores or garage sales as they pop up and add a new piece to your porch or patio.

Prune and Mulch

Prune dead branches and trim back overgrown shrubs and plantings. It’s usually OK to do this as soon as the snow melts unless your plant or shrub blooms in the spring. (Check with a professional first if you are unsure.) Spread mulch or bark around trees and shrubs early. You’ll have to wait a bit to do flower gardens, but get the big stuff done and out of the way.

Front Door

Giving your front door a new coat of paint or new hardware can definitely take curb appeal up a notch. Putting out a new welcome mat or outdoor rug on your porch is a good way to get ready for spring and summer visitors.

Windows

It’s all about the sunshine now. Spend a day washing windows, and then park yourself in front of one on the next sunny afternoon. You’ll be glad you did.

Air conditioning

It may be a few more months before you’re turning on the A/C, but take the time now during the not-so-great weather to take care of these mundane chores. It’s a good idea to have a professional come out to check and clean your system, but you can go ahead and clean off the unit, and trim back bushes and shrubs so the system can run at peak efficiency. Change all filters as well.

Yard and Garden Tools

Spend a little time sharpening your tools, including pruners, loppers, shovels and lawn mower blades. Put away the snow shovels and roof rakes and organize all your summer lawn and garden tools and you’ll be ready to celebrate spring.

Research and Browse

Be sure to take advantage of local events like the Rochester Home & Garden Show at the Convention Center this weekend. You’ll get lots of great ideas for inside and outside your home, and you can talk to the professionals about your upcoming projects.

This story is provided and presented by our [Democrat & Chronicle] sponsor, Rochester Home Builders Association.

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http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/sponsor-story/rhba-home-garden/2015/03/16/rhba-spaces-spring/24503461/