Climatec Mechanicals Ultimate Christmas Checklist: 18 Tasks to get your home Ready For The Holidays

The holiday season revolves around spending time with family, friends, and enjoying the festivities to create cherished memories. It’s essential not to let stress or concerns about your home’s condition overshadow the joy of the season. While undertaking significant renovations right before the holidays isn’t advisable, there’s ample opportunity to address smaller tasks that collectively contribute to a more functional, comfortable, and welcoming home.

Climatec Headquarters

1. Brighten Up the Entryway

Doorway of home decorated for winter and Christmas with signs and poinsettias.

Even when your town is in the icy embrace of winter, you have the opportunity to add vibrant touches to your entryway. Illuminate the porch, bushes, and trees with festive lights, bringing warmth and color. If you reside in a region without frost during winters, consider potting up containers with lively annual plants to adorn your front entrance.

2. Sweep It Up

snow cleaning in the back yard - for more winter

During this season, fallen leaves, snow, and mud often make an appearance, and the last thing you want is for your guests to bring them inside. Prior to their arrival, make sure to sweep or wash the pathway to your house. If they will be parking or walking across the driveway, ensure that area is cleaned as well.

3. Clean Up Your Home’s Exterior

Is your home’s siding and windows splattered with mud from the early winter storms? If your region experiences nighttime temperatures above 50°F, it’s time to address the issue before your guests arrive. Employ a power washer to efficiently remove grime and grit from the exterior of your house, ensuring a clean and inviting appearance. For colder regions, avoid using icy water; instead, opt for wiping interior windows and ground-floor exterior windows with a suitable homemade or store-bought cleanser. Additionally, clear away leaves, dead bugs, and other debris from outdoor lights and trim to enhance the overall appeal of your home.

4. Check the Front Steps

Check if your house has steps leading up to the front door. Before your friends and family arrive, ensure that these steps are secure and safe. Take the time to address any loose or cracked boards, secure any wobbly handrails, and consider placing nonslip rubber stair treads where needed. In case you have concrete steps requiring repairs, be mindful of the temperature—avoid pouring concrete when it drops below 50 degrees. If it’s too cold to fix the steps, create an alternative route into your home and make sure to inform your guests to use it. This ensures a welcoming and hazard-free entry for everyone.

5. Replace Burned-Out Bulbs

Inspect all the lamps and overhead lighting in your home, and swap out any burnt-out bulbs. Pay special attention to the bathroom light bulbs, including those in vanity fixtures, and check the closet in the guest room. Use this opportunity to upgrade any old incandescent bulbs to more energy-efficient CFLs or LEDs. When navigating the sometimes perplexing light bulb aisle, opt for the brightest bulbs that are safe for your fixtures. Additionally, consider the color temperature to ensure each room is illuminated in the most flattering and suitable light.

6. Clean the Oven

As you gear up for the holiday cooking frenzy, anticipate that your oven and stovetop will be working hard to produce flawless pies, golden turkeys, and delightful side dishes. Before diving into the Christmas meal preparations, initiate your oven’s self-cleaning cycle or manually clean it. Don’t forget to run stovetop drip pans and grates through your dishwasher’s heavy-duty cycle to eliminate any stubborn, baked-on residue.

7. Put in a Toilet-Paper Holder

Ensuring the comfort and convenience of your guests takes priority during the holiday season, particularly for those staying overnight. While a half-used roll casually perched on the toilet tank lid might be adequate throughout the year, it falls short when welcoming a surge of guests. Enhance guest experience by installing a toilet-paper holder—available in various choices at any home improvement center—within easy reach of the toilet.

8. Make Your Stairs Safe

For homes with a wooden staircase, it’s advisable to secure a runner or apply self-stick stair treads before accommodating overnight guests. This precaution becomes crucial as visitors unfamiliar with bare stairs might be prone to slipping, particularly if they’re wearing socks or soft-soled slippers.

9. Clean Out the Coat Closet

If your coat closet resembles a chaotic mix of sporting goods, cleaning supplies, and miscellaneous papers with no designated home, it’s high time for a thorough cleanout to accommodate your guests’ coats. Seize this opportunity to declutter the space—donate items you no longer need, organize essential belongings into their rightful places, and dispose of any unnecessary clutter.

10. Fix Drips and Clogs

Avoid the awkwardness of a clogged sink or a dripping faucet disturbing your guests’ peace during their nightly routines. While addressing plumbing issues might not be the most festive task, it’s an essential part of your holiday preparations. Include checking and replacing worn washers or fittings in leaky faucets and addressing hair clogs, grime, or blockages in sluggish drains. This ensures a smoothly functioning bathroom for your visitors.

11. Scrub the Baseboards

While scuffed, dusty, and dirty baseboards may seem inconspicuous, their impact on a room’s overall appearance is more significant than you might think. Don’t underestimate the transformative effect of a thorough baseboard cleaning. Before checking this off your Christmas to-do list, invest time in scrubbing not only the baseboards but also pay attention to the front door. Additionally, ensure the interior walls and trim are free from any spots or smudges to enhance the overall cleanliness and brightness of the space.

12. Hire a Chimney Sweep

While the warmth of a roaring fire on Christmas Eve brings joy, it can turn into a less pleasant experience if the fire sends smoke into your living room instead of up the chimney. Ensuring a clean and safe chimney is essential, making it a good practice to have a professional chimney sweep clean and inspect your fireplace and chimney on an annual basis. Especially with the anticipation of roaring fires during the holiday season, this ensures a cozy and hazard-free environment for your festive celebrations.

13. Inspect Your Holiday Decor

As you progress through your Christmas decorations checklist, refrain from hanging up holiday lights or placing the inflatable snowman on your front lawn without first checking all cords and plugs for any signs of fraying, breaks, or cracks. Discard anything that appears damaged. Using holiday decorations that are past their prime poses a risk of fire, making it imperative to prioritize safety over aesthetics. The potential dangers far outweigh the temporary festive appeal.

14. Have Major Appliances Serviced

Midway through the stay of your out-of-town guests is not the ideal moment for your washing machine, dishwasher, or furnace to malfunction. If you’ve been observing but neglecting signs of issues with major appliances, such as poor performance or unusual sounds, it’s advisable to contact a service professional promptly. Addressing these concerns before they escalate into major problems will ensure a smoother and more enjoyable experience for both you and your guests.

15. Test Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

You are advised to test the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors regularly. However, if you’ve overlooked this task, take a moment to check them now by pressing the “test” button. If there’s no response or if the device emits a weak chirp, it indicates the need for new batteries. Ensure the safety of your home by promptly replacing the batteries in these essential detectors.

16. Seal Drafts

Drafts from windows or doors not only raise heating expenses but also reduce the comfort of your family and guests. You can easily identify drafts by using a lit stick of incense near each window and door, observing for any wavering, bending, or blowing of the smoke column. Replace any faulty or worn weatherstripping to ensure a cozier and more energy-efficient home for everyone.

17. Improve Air Quality

In the winter, as the heating is running and windows remain closed, the indoor air tends to become dry, dusty, and stagnant. If you have a furnace, ensure that you replace the filter promptly. Additionally, dust off registers, vents, baseboard heating units, and radiators. To combat excessively dry air, consider investing in one or two humidifiers for enhanced comfort. On cold but sunny days, think about briefly lowering the thermostat and opening a few windows to introduce some fresh air into your living space.

18. Freshen Up Your Pet’s Area

Certain cleaning tasks are often left until the last minute, and it’s essential to remember to address the messes created by your nonhuman family members. While Fido may be adorable, the less-than-pleasant aroma from his bed or crate isn’t as charming, and the same goes for Fluffy’s litter box. Make it a priority to wash your pet’s bedding before guests arrive. Consider placing a compact air purifier close to your pet’s litter box or crate to assist in filtering out dander, odors, and pet hair.