house-image-tools Autumn presents a golden opportunity for homeowners to get in some last-minute home improvements while the weather is still warm. It’s also a chance to get in any last-minute repairs so you don’t have to deal with them in when it’s frigid outside. Here are five recommendations for projects to make your home even more cozy for the winter:

Replace the windows

Save yourself from winter’s chill – and a higher heating bill – by replacing your windows in the fall. If you’re unable to replace them, at least take time to caulk around your existing windows to prevent cold air from entering your home. Either way, you’ll make your home more comfortable and you’ll potentially save money on your heating bill.

Prep the heating system

Speaking of heating, you’ll want to take care of your furnace before the first chill sets in, so have your heating system checked by a licenced heating contractor. If you rely on a wood stove or fireplace, make sure they’re in working order and call a chimney sweep if you need to have it cleaned (this is as much about safety as it is about maintenance.)  This is also a good opportunity to remove window AC units and/or cover or wrap your central AC unit to protect them from rust.

Repair paths and walkways

Spend a weekend leveling any brick pavers or repairing any uneven concrete patches leading to your home’s entrances. Even if your walkway looks safe now, it could become treacherous when ice forms after a winter storm.

Fix the roof

Nothing aggravates a leaky roof like the ravages of winter weather. By performing a roofing repair in the fall, you (or the roofer you hire) will avoid extreme temperatures and prevent further damage from snow and ice.

Seal the driveway 

Sealing your driveway now will help extend the life of the asphalt through the winter and beyond. Inspect the driveway for any cracks, clean out and repair any damage with driveway filler, then coat with a commercial sealer. This can easily be done over the course of a weekend.

Citizens State Bank can help you obtain the financing you need to get some or all of these projects done. Just call or stop by and talk to one of our experienced loan officers and apply for a Home Equity Loan or Home Equity Line of Credit. Better yet, visit and use our handy Online Mortgage Application to jumpstart the process!