The beginning of this week marked the offical day of fall. Early fall is the time of year to prepare your house for the cooler weather just around the corner. Below are some tips on some things you'll need to do to make sure your home is prepared for winter, which will be here sooner than you think!

1. Call out the heating professionals. While you may think it is not necessary to have your unit serviced because your heating system is working well, it is very important to have it inspected by a professional every year.  By taking this preventative measure and making minor fixes now, you can avoid expensive repair jobs in the future.

2. Seal the cracks. You don't want to increase your heating bill by letting in cold air so it is a good idea to do an  inspection of all windows and doors to check for problem areas. Use weather stipping or caulk to repair any damage and and seal up any gaps.

3. Clean The Dreaded Gutters. While most people dread cleaning the cutters, it is very important to do so. Make sure they are free of leaves and debris and repair any broken gutters and downspouts. In addition remove or trim dead or overgrown tree limbs hanging over your house. All it takes is one storm to bring weak branches down and damage your roof.

4. Protect your plumbing. Even if your pipes have never frozen in the past it is important to protect them. Check the lines that run through the exterior walls. Wrap with pipe jackets, fiberglass insulation or electric tape.

5. Don't forget the lawn. Fertilize the lawn  to promote root growth and make your lawn greener next year.

As cold weather approaches you should begin to take action early to prepare and protect your home for the season. With careful planning and preparation you can help to  ensure your utilities will run efficiently during the winter, and in the end save you time and money,