Tackling six simple tasks now gives you a head start on summer. This gives you plenty of worry-free time to enjoy the warmer weather.

#1 – Tell the bugs to stay away

The warmth of early spring wakes up insects, so start protecting your home now. Seal openings in eaves, decks and other structures to keep carpenter bees out.

Repel mosquitoes by removing standing water or treating it with larvicide. Call a pro to destroy wasp and yellowjacket nests, unless you are experienced enough to engage in a bee fight.

#2 – Lawn Care Prep Tools

Ladies and gentlemen, start your mowers. April is the month to prepare this vital equipment. An unmaintained machine can cost money, slow you down and leave your lawn susceptible to disease. So, before pulling the starter rope:

Replace spark plugs and air filter.
Change the oil and sharpen the blades.
Fill the tank with fresh gasoline.

While you have your gloves, clean, sharpen and repair your gardening tools. When your azaleas are ready to be pruned, you won’t want to keep them waiting.

#3 – Adjust the air conditioner

With flip-flop weather comes another summer tradition: turn up the air conditioning. Adjust your air conditioning in April, before mercury and service levels spike.

Ask your HVAC company if it has a semi-annual maintenance plan. Often you can get discounted rates if you sign up, and you don’t have to worry about finding someone to do it every spring and fall.

#4 – Check the attic (and garage)

How long has it been since you looked in the attic? April is the time to inspect this often overlooked space – before it gets too hot. Look for signs of animal activity (raccoons love attics) and repair or replace damaged insulation or wiring.

Ensure stored items are always secure; tighten container lids and dust covers and replace mothballs.

While we’re talking storage, how’s the garage? If soccer balls, bikes and luggage have occupied a prime parking spot, take back control with a storage system. Your and your car will thank you.

#5 – Clean bird feeders

In addition to spreading disease to birds, dirty bird feeders attract rodents and detract from curb appeal. Raw.

Give your bird feeders a thorough cleaning – not just a rinse.

Empty them, disassemble them and wash them with a solution of one part bleach to nine parts hot water. Rinse well to remove all traces of bleach, air dry and fill with seeds. Also be sure to clean under feeders, as moldy or spoiled seed on the ground can make animals sick. Don’t forget the birdbath.

A pretty yard that’s a healthy haven for birds makes a good impression – one that says “this is a well-kept house.”

#6 – Change the batteries in your smoke/carbon monoxide alarm

Don’t forget to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. The adage is to change them when the weather changes, so if you forgot to do this last month, then now is the time.

This list really has nothing to do with buying or selling a home, but when you’re spending so much money on your home these days, it makes perfect sense to maintain it properly.

If you need advice with advice like these or anything else related to your home, please contact your trusted local estate agent who can be a valuable resource for more help than just buying or selling property. ‘properties.

Bob Walsmsith Jr. is the 2022 President of the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors (SBAOR). He is a licensed California realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties here in Santa Barbara. He has served and chaired several committees within the SBAOR and served on its Board of Directors for the past five years. Bob can be reached at 805.720.5362 and [email protected]