Winter Home Maintenance

by Lizzy Conroy
November 1, 2017

Home Maintenance for Winter

Blowing Leaves and the seasonal changing colors reminds us of inclement weather ahead.  Best homeowner approach is to take care of seasonal home maintenance in advance of the cold season.  The iconic Farmer’s Almanac states for the 2017/2018 cold season, “For Virginia and the District, the publication predicts the region will experience a “wintry chill, wet and white” this winter.”  

In addition to picking up an extra shovel and scraper at the store, I checked in with McLean community Handyman Doug Hartnett of NOVA Handyman.  Doug has been serving the greater McLean community for over 19 years and offers much appreciated, thoughtful tips for home maintenance this season.

Home Maintenance Questions for Doug:

Doug, what are top recommendations for homeowners to protect their home during the cold season?  

Remember to drain outside spigots and turn off for the winter via the inside cut off valve. Spigots often freeze, burst and flood homes when the winter temperatures get frigid.

Clean out your gutters one last time after the leaves are off the trees.  Keeping leaves in the gutters over the winter can cause water to freeze inside the gutters. Frozen gutters and ice dams can cause leaks inside the house, especially after heavy snows.  Heavy ice filled gutters can pull away from the house as well.

Trim off tree branches that have grown very close to your roof, gutters, fences, siding, shutters.  During windy days, the branches can damage your home or roof.

What are the most common concerns of homeowners in the fall / winter season? Many people are planning for the holidays and house guests and they so they want to take care of overdue repairs or spruce up their homes with new fixtures.  Common projects are re-caulking tubs, minor drywall, touch up painting, plumbing repairs, mounting flat TVs, etc.

What type of work keeps you busiest around this time of the year? The spring and fall real estate markets bring us a lot of projects.

You’ve been in business for over 19 years in McLean?  Tell us a little about your service to the McLean community? We have many longtime customers in Mclean who have referred us to their neighbors. Most of our business in Mclean is by referral.  We appreciate our many loyal customers in Mclean.

Doug, how would you finish the sentence “I always tell my customers…” I tell our customers to keep a ‘honey do’ list of repairs. Write down the small problems as they notice them.  Then call for an appointment when there is at least a half a dozen small repairs or projects.  It will save them money and make sure items aren’t forgotten.

For more information on NOVA Handyman and their services, please visit NOVA Handyman at WWW.NOVAHANDYMAN.COM.  They can be reached at 703-556-4276 or email DOUG@NOVAHANDYMAN.COM


Lizzy Conroy is partner at Huckaby Briscoe Conroy Group. Lizzy graduated from Georgetown University with a B.A. in Economics and has served in a number of professional capacities in the Washington, DC area a first with the international trade group of Hogan Lovells, then as a marketing manager with MicroStrategy of McLean, VA. She also held business development positions with Kalmia Construction, a Maryland-based commercial construction company, and Newmark LLC, a New York City-based commercial real estate firm.

Lizzy is the 2017 American Mothers, Inc. Virginia Mother of the Year and currently serves on the AMI National Board of Directors. Lizzy is the 2005 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society National Woman of the Year and is a past member of the LLS Board of Trustees. She is a sustaining member of the Junior League of Northern Virginia and is a devoted member of her church, Trinity United Methodist. She is a member of River Bend Golf & Country Club, Great Falls, VA. She and her husband, Steve, live in McLean, Virginia with their two children.

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia, the District of Columbia, and Maryland

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