It’s about time we start bundling up: swapping out our summer clothes for long pants, sweaters, coats and more. Have you done your winter

home maintenance to make sure your house is ready for the short days and dropping temperatures, too? If you haven’t, or just want a good list to double-check against, be sure to read Ilyce Glink’s article on the Equifax Personal Finance Blog, “

Winter Home Maintenance and Weatherproofing Tips.”

One of the best ways to cut down on your heating bills is to add insulation to your home, and not just in the attic. Over the years, your home develops small cracks around the windows and doors naturally which tend to lose heat. Small cracks in the ceiling can be worse, as heat naturally rises up to the attic and away from your living areas. The simplest way to fix this is with a tube of caulk, which can easily seal up those cracks and prevent heat loss. If you’re not sure where you’re losing heat, you can use a lit incense stick and explore near closed doors and windows and watch the smoke guide you to anywhere that unintentional airflow is.

Another area that benefits from additional insulation is your pipes. By wrapping them, you can reduce the heat loss when water travels throughout your home. This can result in quicker times for hot water and even a higher temperature in your water. Also, even though insulation may be built in to your water heater, buying and applying an external wrap with a value of at least R-8 can save you up to 10 percent on water heating costs.

The full article features additional information, like ways to keep your home safer from ice and reduce energy costs over the winter. Check the

Equifax Finance Blog frequently for everything you need to know about credit, insurance, taxes, retirement and real estate.

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