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Preparing Your Home for Fall

Tips for Preparing your Home for Fall Weather in Savannah GA

Fall is not only the time of colorful forest trails and misty mornings, it’s also a good time to take care of the little things that will help maintain your home. Most of these things you can handle yourself and even if you choose to hire professional services it’s well worth the expense.

Get your home in order for the coming winter with these Fall cleaning tips

Interior Preparation

  1. Have your furnace inspected

This should be done once a year and fall is usually the best time for it as you’ll be using it a lot more in the colder months ahead. Hire an HVAC contractor to test for leaks, change the filter and do a carbon monoxide check.

  1. Improve home safety

Go over all your homes safety devices and see if they’re working correctly. Check your smoke and CO2 alarms. They should be fully dusted and have their batteries changed. Also, check your fire extinguishers to be sure they’re working properly. 

  1. Improve insulation

With winter fast approaching now’s the time to improve your home’s insulation. With better insulation in your attic and walls, you’ll be able to keep cold drafts from coming inside your home. This will improve your energy efficiency as your furnace won’t have to do overtime.

  1. Set your thermostat

If you don’t have a programmable thermostat buy one and set it for colder periods. By setting your thermostat to lower the temperature automatically at night and when you’re not at home you can make big savings on your energy bills

Exterior Preparation

  1. Do a roof inspection

A careful inspection from the ground with a pair of binoculars should do it. Check for any missing, loose or damaged shingles. If you can, try and get on the roof for a closer look. You can do repairs yourself or hire a contractor to do it.

  1. Stock up on firewood

Make sure your well stocked up on firewood. If you gather your own make sure their dry and store them in a dry location or under a tarp. For safety reasons, it’s better to store them away from the house.

  1. Clean the gutters

Not the most pleasant job but it’s something that has to be done. Get a ladder and start removing leaves, nests, and debris from the gutters. You can always hire a contractor to save you doing it yourself.

  1. Reinforce windows and doors

If your expecting rough weather ahead prepare your windows and doors. Remove screens and refit them with storm windows and doors. Make sure their properly sealed

  1. Check sprinklers and irrigation systems

If you live in a colder climate you may need to drain and service your irrigation system. Have a professional do any repairs and store away what you can. This goes for garden hoses as well. Outdoor faucets should be shut off and valves closed off.


Although winter may still seem a long way off now is the best time to prepare. Follow these tips and anything else your home might need. You’ll feel grateful once the first snow begins to fall.

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Renting Versus Buying a House in Savannah – Which one is Right for You?

Considering the hefty price to buy a home, most young people begin their adult lives by renting. As they build up a career, save money and start a family the idea of owning a home becomes more pressing. Mortgage rates though still remain too far out of reach for many young people. In the last 10 years, homeownership among those aged 35 and younger has declined by 18%. Coupled with the aftershocks of the great recession and historic levels of student loan debt the results are easy to understand.

Yet even if the finances are there to acquire a home, recent trends in some areas suggest that it may soon be cheaper to rent then buy in Savannah. In the end, whatever your final decision may be there’s a chance that it may not be a financial one.

Buying a House in Savannah

Buying a home can bring a lot of advantages and for the most part, it’s still cheaper, in the long run, to buy than rent but it calls for a large sum up-front and a few one-time costs. This can add up to a lot when everything is factored in.

  • Earnest money – a payment that ranges from 1% to 3% of a home’s value to show that you are serious about the purchase.
  • Down payment – a percentage of the homes price that is paid upfront. This ranges widely depending on credit profile, market conditions and type of mortgage loan and typically ranges from 3% to 20% of the purchase price.
  • Home appraisal – a price paid to ensure the homes price matches the homes values, usually between $300 and $500.
  • Home inspection – licensed home inspectors hired to find problems and defects that might not be apparent to the untrained eye. Usually, costs about the same as a home appraisal.
  • Property taxes – as homeowners need to pay property taxes upfront a buyer will need to compensate a seller for taxes paid from the closing date to the end of the current tax period.
  • Home insurance for the first year – you almost always need to pay the first years premium upfront. This cost varies widely based on location, your credit score and coverage limits.

In addition. There will also be recurring payments over the months and years ahead. This includes loan payments, property taxes, insurance, utility bills and maintenance. Not forgetting as well on-time costs like furnishings, moving costs and renovation projects.

Advantages of Buying a House

If you can cover all of these costs though you can soon reap the benefits and save more money in the long run then you would from renting. This includes building home equity, tax benefits and the potential for rental income.

Money aside, there’s also the personal benefits you gain from home ownership such as creative freedom to redo the house as you want and the chance to settle down and set some roots in the local community.

Renting a Home in Savannah

Renting won’t have as many upfront costs but there will still be a few to go through before you can move in.

  • Security deposit – made to insure against any damage to the property or broken leases, usually the price of one month.
  • First month’s rent – you’ll need to pay the first months rent upfront along with the security deposit.
  • Moving costs – same as homeowners, renters will still need to pay the costs of moving their furnishings and belongs to their new residence.

You’ll also have a few recurring costs that will need to be covered each month. This will include your monthly rent, renter’s insurance (optional but recommended), utility bills and possibly laundry if the rental unit does not come with its own laundry machines.

Advantages of Renting in Savannah

Renting a property will come with plenty of advantages if you’re not expecting to settle down and need the freedom to quickly move again if needed. You won’t be responsible for any maintenance or repairs such as burst pipes or malfunctioning air-conditioner units and you also won’t be influenced by changing prices in the real estate market. For people who don’t expect to stay in one place for more than 3 years or can’t afford the upfront cost for a purchase will be better choosing a rental.

Savannah Rental prices have remained quite stable in recent years while those for mortgages have risen. However, when everything is measured out the costs of owning a home in Savannah are still about 33.1% cheaper than a rental. If you can afford to put 20% of the purchasing price down and a 30-year fixed rate mortgage then it makes perfect sense to buy rather than rent. Ultimately, most people will base their final decision on whether or not they’re ready for homeownership. It comes with a lot of responsibilities and a strong commitment but if you feel you’re ready and can afford it then the soon the better.