You Should Really Be Doing These Things to Your House Every Summer

Sun's out — and if you did your spring cleaning, there's not much else you need to do to prep for longer, hotter days and warmer nights.

In the Yard

Set the stage for outdoor living.

Backyard setting with fire pit
credit: Stephen Paul
  • Break out the patio furniture. Wash it down if you haven't already. If you have teak, sand and re-stain. Launder any cushion covers
  • Spruce up your BBQ: Scrape the grills; spray down the exterior; clear the vent holes
  • Refresh your mulch
  • Root out standing water — nobody needs West Nile virus
  • Inspect — and repair — your sprinklers
  • Remove unwanted nests, from hornets to swallows
  • Re-up on citronella candles and bug killers

Exterior of the House

Now that the weather is reliably dry, it's time for touch-ups.

Exterior of home with outdoor seating area
credit: Stephen Paul
  • Touch up any cracked or peeling house paint
  • Stain the deck
  • Repair and repaint or re-stain fencing

Inside the House

Stay cool, my friends.

  • Reset the thermostat — you can save a lot of money just by setting it 2 or 3 degrees warmer than normal
  • Better yet, invest in a smart thermostat
  • Test the house for air leaks, so your cool air doesn't disappear out a crack in the window
  • Rotate your ceiling fan blades to push air down, rather than up
  • Consider repotting your houseplants

In the Garage

Marie Kondo: the final frontier.

Garage on white traditional house
credit: Stephen Paul
  • Gather all unloved items and prep for a garage sale, or donate

Now that you're got the bare basics done, go and enjoy that sun!


Laura Lambert

Laura Lambert

Laura Lambert is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor who covers lifestyle, design, and women's health.