Prep for the Seasonal Shift: Your November Home To-Do List

Fall leaves

Somehow, it’s already November and the holidays, winter, and even the New Year are almost upon us.

Have you started prepping your home?

With colder weather coming in — not to mention those in-laws and out-of-town guests — the time is now to start preparing your house for the winter season. Here’s what should make your checklist:

  1. Clean out the pantry. If you’re going to be prepping any big family meals this season, you’re going to need some space — particularly in the days leading up to the holidays. To make room, go ahead and clear out any sauces, canned goods, or boxed items that are expired or no longer good. Then, work on organizing and paring down the rest. If you can, allot an entire shelf (or at least part of one) for future holiday meal ingredients. You might need to clear some counter space, too!
  2. Prep the guest room. Clean the sheets, blankets, and pillowcases, and give the room a thorough dusting. Wipe down the windows, vacuum the floors, and clear out any clutter you’ve been storing there for the last few months (we’re all guilty!)
  3. Rake the yard. With the cooler weather also comes changing foliage. Rake and remove any leaves piling up on your lawn, and use a leaf blower to keep your sidewalks and driveway clear. Depending on where you live, you may need to give the yard one more good mow before the holidays hit as well.
  4. Sanitize your high-touch areas. Winter is the worst time of the year for colds, so use some Clorox wipes, and remove the germs from high-touch areas like doorknobs, fridge handles, TV remotes, and light switches. Then, stock up on a few bottles of hand sanitizer. Station them in bathrooms and easily accessible areas, like end tables and countertops.
  5. Clean your air filters. If you want that heat to kick in when you need it most, replace your air filters and make sure the vents are clear of dust and debris. You should also run a quick test to make sure all is functioning properly. If the heat doesn’t seem to be working right (or it just won’t get warm enough) you’ll have plenty of time to repair it before the cold really sets in next month.

Need to make any renovations or repairs before the cold season hits? Then contact Embrace Home Loans today to see if you qualify for a cash-out refinance.

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Aly Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer focusing on real estate, mortgage, and the housing market. Her work has been featured in Forbes, Bankrate, The Motley Fool, Business Insider, The Balance, and more. Prior to freelancing, she served as an editor and reporter for The Dallas Morning News. She graduated from Texas Christian University's Bob Schieffer College of Communication with a major in radio-TV-film and news-editorial journalism. Connect with her at or on Twitter at @AlyJwriter.