It’s summertime, and the livin’s easy. The longer days and warmer weather make it the perfect time to prepare your home for winter. Here are a few projects to do now to make your life easier when the cold weather arrives.

1. Clean out the garage

It’s far more pleasant to work in the garage in the summer, when you can have the door open without piling on layers of clothes. Carve out a parking space for your car now, and you won’t have to scrape ice off the windshield in December. Plus it’s the perfect time to hold a garage sale for any forgotten “treasures” you discover.

2. Dodge the draft

Have you been enjoying summer’s warm breezes – through cracks in your doors? Weather stripping and caulking are affordable ways to close the gaps and boost the efficiency of your heating system come wintertime.

3. Keep your mind in the gutter

At least for a while. Clogged gutters can wreak havoc on your home when they fill with ice in the winter. While the weather’s warm, grab a ladder, gloves and hose and clear them out. Not ready to trade pool time for gutter work? Hire a local service to do it for you.

4. Find the deals

The middle of the summer is a great time to find discounts on services you’ll need before the snow falls, like chimney sweeping and heating system checks. Shop around for the best deals and you could save a chunk of change.

5. Check your water heater

Yes, this can be done just as easily in the winter as the summer, but while you’re on a roll, why not flush your hot water heater? It takes just a few minutes and costs nothing. Sediment collects over time and reduces the machine’s efficiency. Simply flush the water through the drain valve into a bucket to clear out the particles.

A little work this summer will increase your enjoyment of your home in winter, and also may retain its value. For more home ownership tips and tricks, check out other posts on the RE/MAX blog.