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Snow Bird? Heading South for the Winter?

Are you one of the snow birds? Heading for warmer weather as frost starts to take over and snow starts to fall in the north? First, I'm jealous. I'm never lucky enough to hide in your luggage, so I wait for the days I can become a snow bird myself. Okay, my whining aside... Here are some really great tips on what to do as you prepare to head south.

Making sure your home is winterized is extremely important in avoiding a disaster when you come home, such as frozen/broken pipes, roof damage, or theft. Here are a few thinks you should consider before heading for the warmth.

• Prevent the home from appearing unoccupied

* Forward mail, stop newspaper delivery and ask a friend to pick up items that may be left at the door.

* Arrange for someone to remove snow after storms.

* Install motion-sensitive exterior lights and interior lights on timers and set them to come on at varying times

• Maintain heat in the dwelling; make arrangements to keep propane tanks filled as needed

• Drain water pipes;

* Consider pouring non-toxic antifreeze in toilet tanks and bowls to prevent any remaining water from freezing.

* If you decide against draining the water pipes, maintain the heat in the home and open room and cabinet doors so the heat can circulate where the pipes

are located

• Consider installing monitoring equipment as well as an app on your cell phone to alert you to any sudden temperature changes in the dwelling

• Have a designated person available to keep watch over your home and make occasional interior checks of the property

• Call your agent so she has time to sneak into your suitcase before departure!

These are only a few items to think about before packing it in for the winter. Preventing damage while you golf and sunbathe in the south will ensure you can enjoy your home away from home. Let's make sure we are protecting what's important, even in the deep frozen tundra!

So, what was your departure date again? And just how big is your suitcase?

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