That chill in the morning air gives it away: fall is here to stay. Are you ready for the big change? Whether you’re gearing up the kids for school or packing away your summer clothes, a lot goes into preparing for the change of the seasons. It’s easy to fall behind the season, so here are four easy and inexpensive tips to help you get your home ready for the fall months.

#1: Turn your clock back

Daylight savings is right around the corner. On November 6, 2016, our clocks will jump back an hour, so be sure to mark it on your calendars to save yourself from oversleeping. For manual clocks, set your clock back the night before and avoid confusion the following morning. This includes stoves, microwaves, clock radios, watches, portable games, and other devices around the home.

#2: Replace your smoke alarm battery

With cold weather comes bonfires and gas heat, making fall a great season to replace the battery in your smoke alarm. Experts recommend replacing the battery once per year, so stay ahead of the game by replacing yours every fall. You can also upgrade to a new smart detector that can send alerts to your phone, remind you when the battery is running low, and even detect carbon monoxide leaks.

#3: Prep your yard

One of the many perks of fall and winter is the reduced lawn maintenance, but that doesn’t mean your yard can go neglected! Fall is a great time to lay the foundation for a beautiful lawn next year, so be sure to maintain your yard even as the weather gets cold. You can rake leaves to keep your turf healthy for next spring, as well as investing in seed or fertilizer to keep your yard healthy year-round.

#4: Have your furnace serviced

The winter months can be hard on your furnace, so make sure your system is going into cold weather in tip top shape. The simplest form of maintenance is to replace the filter on your furnace to improve your air quality and the efficiency of your system. In addition to this necessary step, you should also have a professional HVAC technician tune-up your furnace before the cold weather hits.

During a tune-up, the technician will check for a number of things, including:

  • Carbon monoxide leaks
  • Ventilation obstructions or leakages
  • Damage to the burners
  • Rust or corrosion
  • Wiring damage

This not only protects your investment, but protects your family from the hazards of a faulty furnace. Add the fact that a fully serviced, efficient furnace will shave money off of your energy bill, and annual tune-ups are a no brainer for homeowners.

So break out that box of sweaters and stock up on your firewood for the chilly weather heading your way. With these four home preparation tips, you and your family can prepare for a safe and enjoyable fall without increasing your spending.

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