It may not snow in San Francisco, but the weather outside can still be frightful. Temperatures are already starting to drop, and we’re heading towards January, which has long been both the coldest and wettest month in San Francisco. Prepare your home for winter in San Francisco so that the climate inside can be a cozy reprieve from the fog, wind, and rain. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell a home, or you’re already settled, these five essential tips will keep your house in tip-top shape during the winter season.

Clean Your Heaters, Fireplace, and Chimney Flue

Heating devices, and especially fireplaces and chimneys, are leading causes of house fires in San Francisco. Most often, this is due to flammable objects being left too close to the source of heat and from chimneys, fireplaces, and heaters not being cleaned on a regular basis. Improper maintenance leads to faulty heating devices and, subsequently, house fires.

It’s a good idea to get your heating devices and chimneys checked by a professional in preparation for winter. The small fee for having someone with expertise look over your home’s heating systems is well worth preventing the costs that would incur from a house fire. To take extra preventative care, also be sure to use a sturdy screen in front of your fireplace and always dispose of ashes in a metal container, not a wooden or plastic one.

Install or Test Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Another danger posed by heating devices is carbon monoxide, which is often the result of improper ventilation. Even if you have a professional confirm that all of your heat sources are in good working order, it is still a good idea to install and test carbon monoxide detectors. For maximum safety, install a carbon monoxide detector on each floor of your house.

Clear out the Rain Gutters

The winter season in San Francisco sees an increase in the amount of rainfall, even during a drought. Prepare for the rainy weather well in advance by clearing out your rain gutters in the fall. Checking on the rain gutters periodically during the winter months will also help prevent clogs from happening. You can tell your gutters are clogged if the water doesn’t drain properly through the downspout. Remember to be extra cautious when cleaning your rain gutters in order to prevent injury. Alternatively, you can hire a professional.

Winter-Proof Your Garden

San Francisco may not have hard and fast seasons, but there are weather cycles that can affect your gardens. During winter in the San Francisco Bay Area, the soil stays moist longer due to shorter, cooler days. This also means that your gardens will receive more shade than they do during the summer months. Ensure that your garden has proper drainage to sufficiently handle the winter rains and that your plants will have access to adequate sunlight.

Potted plants that don’t tolerate cold, wet weather very well can be brought indoors. Otherwise, most of the plants typically grown in San Francisco, such as rosemary, rose bushes, and lavender, are well-suited for the climate. You can even grow a winter vegetable garden, consisting of winter vegetables like arugula, kale, peas, and chard.

Stock Your Home with Cold Weather Essentials

Sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference. Our favorite cold weather essentials for the home include:

  • Warm throw blankets in the living room and bedrooms
  • Fleece sheets on the beds
  • Slippers for everyone, including extra pairs for guests
  • Portable space heaters for rooms that aren’t connected to the home heating system
  • Electric blankets and hot water bottles
  • Candles, which create a warm ambience and help raise the temperature a bit
  • Soft throw rugs to cover any cold, wooden floors
  • Towels by the front door so people can immediately dry off when they come inside from a rainy day

Do you have a favorite cold weather essential that helps you get through the winter months in San Francisco? Let us know on Twitter! #SFhotlist

Prepare Your Home for Winter in San Francisco

At Danielle Lazier :: SFhotlist Team and Keller Williams San Francisco, we believe that real estate is about more than just square footage. As real estate experts, we take care to know the ins and outs of what makes a good home. If you need any advice about buying or selling or doing what’s best for your new home, please reach out! We’re happy to help.

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