DIY Tips That Will Keep You Safe This Winter

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by Harriet Bond
(San Francisco, CA, USA)

If you’re trying to spruce up your property to make it more attractive to buyers, it’s important not to focus solely on the interior. But with some experts saying the milder winter days are behind us, it’s important to make sure any outdoor work we do now is as safe as possible.

With that in mind, here are some tips that should help you give your property a makeover without having a nasty accident!

Cleaning the gutters

One of the most obvious outdoor jobs you’ll have to do is clear out the gutters, but like any job that involves ladders this will come with its own risks. Before you start, check the ground around where you’ll be pitching up your ladders and if necessary give it a good clean. If it’s mossy or icy, you could be in danger of slipping, so consider a salt or grit spreader if you have a lot of ground to cover. Of course, you’ll also want to get some decent gloves as there could be anything from dead birds to pieces of roof tile in there.

Put away the patio furniture

Let’s face it, you’re not going to be eating or entertaining in the garden any time soon, so make sure you put away any garden furniture that isn’t designed to withstand the winter, giving it a clean and wrapping it in plastic first. There’s nothing worse than seeing a decrepit old patio table cracked and covered in mould, so if you think it needs to be thrown away – do it. But once again, make sure you use protective gloves as often these cracked plastic pieces can be lethal.

Sort out the driveway

If a particularly cold spell is on the way, it’s well worth investing in a decent snow shovel to make lighter work of clearing the driveway. Once you’ve done that though, you might need to give the paving a proper clean as over time thin layers of mould can build up that aren’t just unsightly, they’re dangerous. You don’t want any potential buyers slipping before they’ve even seen the inside of your home, so think about buying or renting a steam cleaner to power through that ugly green build-up.

Of course, there are plenty of other random tasks you should be doing to improve the exterior of your home, such as making sure fence panels are in good shape and have been treated with a good wood preserve. But whatever you do, keep safety in mind and where necessary dress for the occasion with protective gloves, boots and overalls.

Updated: September 22, 2013 — 11:24 am

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