Happy Thursday from the Vermont Mortgage Company! We hope you’ve been enjoying the wonderful views that Vermont has to offer during the winter. The mountains from our office windows have been particularly picturesque, making us glad we are in this wonderful state. However, we do know that with winter weather comes hazards. To help you stay safe and warm over these winter months, here are some more tips we’ve concocted for your benefit!

1 – A roof over your head.

Your roof is going to be holding up a lot of snow in the immediate future, if not already! It is always a good idea to have your roof and tiles inspected by a professional. Have any loose tiles replaced and check for any rot. When the snow begins to fall, make sure you’ve invested in a roof rake! Don’t let too much snow accumulate to prevent the risk of it collapsing.

2 – Cold piping

Make sure to take steps to insulate your pipes! Having pipes freeze can lead to them bursting, which could destroy your beloved home. Ensure that the pipes are well insulated using foam or pipe sleeves. Make sure any hoses are disconnected and your outside spigots drained to make sure exterior pipes don’t freeze. If the temperature drops significantly overnight, leave the tap dripping to prevent a build up of pressure.

3 – Lights Out

Prepare for the possibility of a blackout! During winter storms power lines can be torn down. You don’t want to be caught with no electricity and below freezing temperatures. Protect your family this winter by maintaining supplies to be ready. Some useful things are:

Candles and flash lights – to keep your home illuminated

Batteries – Keep a small stock for flashlights and lanterns

Radio – either a battery powered or crank powered are good. These can be used to keep up to date and learn when the power may come back on

A backup generator – having an alternative source of power can be a life saver. Being able to keep heat and lights on, as well as charge phones and keep up with the news is a great help. However, they must be used  properly. Never keep a generator inside or in an enclosed space – this can lead to a quick and deadly  build up of carbon monoxide. Ensure you know how to use these properly to prevent accidental electrocution.

4 – Falling Hazard

Make sure to clear icicles from overhangs. While they do look beautiful, they can be incredibly dangerous if they fall. Ice dams can also form, which can damage the house and cause rot. Make sure to dress appropriately and remove icicles safely. Tell children to stay away from overhanging ice to be on the safe side. Also, ensure that there isn’t any ice build up on your driveways – make sure to lay salt regularly and use an ice chipper to break it apart so it melts faster.

5 – Germ Spread

Germs thrive around this time of year, especially in houses that have the heat cranked up. Keep the heating a few degrees lower, and ensure people are performing good sanitary habits. Make sure hands are washed frequently and anyone who has become sick doesn’t infect others. Colds, flu, and stomach bugs can spread like wildfire, make sure you aren’t caught!

While the snow may be tapering off now, it won’t be the last we see of winter. And if Punxsutawney Phil is to be believed, it’s going to be a long winter. Feel free to get out of the cold and stop by our office, or call us if you need any assistance: 802-863-2020. Our digital doors are always open at vermontmortgagecompany.com.

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