Now that the weather is warming up, snowbirds will start making their way back to their summer homes. But the journey back isn’t necessarily going to be an easy one. Going back to your summer home will require just as much planning as leaving for the winter did. Hopefully you took the necessary precautions to ensure your summer home will still be in good shape when you get there before you left, but now that you’re heading back, you’ll need a new checklist of things to make the move easier.
Taking Care of Your Winter Home
Before you left your home, you probably prepared it for the time you’d be gone. One of the best things you can do before you leave your winter home is to arrange with someone to take care of your property. Although you don’t need someone to check up on your place every day, it’s good if you have someone who can maintain your house and take care of any emergencies.
For safety’s sake, it’s also best if your house still looks like it occupied, even if it isn’t. This means that the person you left in charge should help you remove snow after storms so it appears as if everything at your place is still being maintained as usual. Your property manager should also collect your mail and any other packages dropped off at your property. By making your place appear as if there’s still someone there, you’re deterring burglars – who might see your absence as the perfect way to break in without the risk of being caught.
You’re also helping to keep strangers out of your mailbox, which could help if there are any mischievous kids in your neighborhood who might steal mail for fun.
If you have a reliable property manager, one of the smartest things you can do is to rent out your summer home during the winter while you’re gone. A website like Airbnb is perfect for this, as most tenants will only want to stay for a short amount of time. However, renting out your summer home will mean you can’t switch off the water, which will mean extra maintenance for your property manager, so be sure you can get enough guests while you’re gone to make it worthwhile.
Remember, your place might not look special to you, but if you live in a small town, there might be many people who want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city over the holiday season.
Once you arrive back at your summer place, you’ll have plenty of work to do. You’ll have to go through your house and check that there isn’t any maintenance that you’ll need to tend to. Check that the pipes are in order, that all your lights still work and that there aren’t leaks in your roof. Also check the walls to see that there are no areas where paint is chipping off that appear wet.
If no one was staying in your house while you were gone, test your freezer and refrigerator before filling it up. Only put a few things into your fridge and freezer and leave it for a few hours or a day to see that it’s still good.
Once you know that everything is still functioning properly, you can go to work cleaning away and dust and other dirt that built up in places while you were gone.
Getting Back Home
Hopefully you know what you should have done to ensure your home is still in good shape once you get back. And hopefully your house will feel just like home again within almost no time after you get there, but before you can think about everything you’ll need to do once you get home, you first have to plan how you’ll get there.
By this time, you probably have a set time for your return. You can return to your summer place either by driving back, or by shipping or car.
If you ship your car, you’ll need to book a flight. Use a website like Skyscanner to help you find the best time to fly back. By comparing different dates, you can save a lot on flying. Often times, flights that are only a single day apart have a large price difference.
However, if you were planning to drive back, it’s advisable that you check the weather in advance. Although the likelihood is far less, you might still get stuck in a snowstorm driving back north during April. If the weather isn’t playing along, it will be best to have your car shipped and book a flight.
An while you won’t be able to know what the weather will look like a month from now, staying up to date with what’s currently happening can help you make an informed choice. If you see a lot of stormy weather on the way you’ll be driving, it might still be the same by the time you’re planning to head back.
Remember, driving the distance most snowbirds travel is a long and tedious task, not to mention the mile you’re putting on your vehicle. Don’t get your feathers in a bunch with the stress of getting your vehicle home, let Suncoast Auto Transport return your car for you.