Essential Checklist for Snowbirds Preparing Their Arizona Home for the Summer

Person writing notes on a checklist while sitting on a couch, focusing on home preparation tasks.

As winter retreats and temperatures rise, snowbirds begin their migration from sunny Arizona back to their cooler homes for the summer. Preparing your winter home before you leave is crucial to ensure it remains safe, secure, and well-maintained during your absence. Here’s a comprehensive checklist to help you get your home ready:

  1. Secure Your Home
  • Lock all doors and windows: Ensure all entry points, including garage doors, are securely locked. Consider using dowel rods in older windows and sliding doors for added security.
  • Install a security system: If you don’t have one, consider installing a system with cameras and motion detectors. Many systems offer remote monitoring through their app.
  • Inform a neighbor or friend: Let a trusted neighbor or friend know you’ll be away. They can keep an eye on your property and report any suspicious activity.
  • Hold your mail: Request the post office to hold your mail or forward it to your summer address. This prevents the accumulation of mail, which can signal an empty home.
  1. Prepare Your Utilities
  • Adjust your thermostat: Set your thermostat to a temperature that balances energy savings with maintaining a safe indoor environment. Many recommend setting it to around 85°F.
  • Turn off the water: Shut off the main water valve to prevent potential leaks. Drain your pipes by running the faucets after turning off the water.
  • Unplug appliances: Disconnect all non-essential electrical appliances to save energy and reduce fire risks. This includes TVs, computers, and kitchen appliances. If you choose to shut off your refrigerator and freezer, leave the doors propped open to protect the seal and prevent mold and odors.
  • Check your irrigation system: Ensure your irrigation system is functioning correctly and set to water your plants adequately while you’re away.
  1. House Maintenance
  • Clean your home: A thorough cleaning helps prevent pest infestations and makes your return more pleasant.
  • Check your roof and gutters: Ensure your roof is in good condition and gutters are clear of debris to prevent water damage.
  • Inspect and service your HVAC system: Schedule a professional HVAC service to ensure it runs efficiently and to prevent any breakdowns during your absence.
  • Arrange for pest control: Consider having a pest control service treat your home to prevent infestations while you’re away.
  1. Outdoor Preparation
  • Secure outdoor furniture: Store patio furniture, grills, and other outdoor items in a secure location to prevent damage from summer storms.
  • Trim trees and bushes: Cut back any overhanging branches or overgrown bushes to reduce fire hazards and prevent damage to your home.
  • Pool maintenance: If you have a pool, balance the water chemistry and consider covering it to keep it clean and safe.
  1. Financial and Administrative Tasks
  • Update your contact information: Make sure all your utility companies and service providers have your updated contact details.
  • Set up automatic payments: For any ongoing bills, set up automatic payments to avoid missing any due dates.
  • Check your insurance: Review your homeowner’s insurance policy to ensure you have adequate coverage while you’re away.
  1. Personal Preparation
  • Pack essentials: Don’t forget to pack all necessary documents, medications, and personal items for your stay in your cooler-weather home.
  • Notify your bank: Inform your bank about your travel plans to avoid any issues with your accounts while you’re away.

Taking these steps can help ensure your Arizona home remains in good condition and provides peace of mind while you enjoy your time in cooler climates.

If you have any emergency maintenance needs while away from your property in Arizona, contact Erica Anderson of Real Premier Team. She is a helpful resource who can assist with contractor referrals and even arrange for a company to perform routine property checks. Wishing you safe travels and happy summer!

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