For people living in lovely San Diego, we miss out on the big changes that the rest of the country sees, which makes it hard to notice the different seasons. While our weather doesn’t change too drastically, fall preparation for San Diego is still very important.This year may be an exception as a weather event called El Nino is on its way, which means we will have unusual weather for the region. The fall and winter are predicted to be very rainy in Southern California. As a property management group, we at North County Property Group look at a number of things for our clients to make sure their homes are ready for the new season. Here is a list of things to check before the autumn comes: Furnaces and Gas Heaters Keep things cozy with a well maintained furnace. Make sure you keep filters clean or replace them as suggested by the manufacturer. Having a professional inspection once a year is a great way to make sure it is in good working condition and not a safety risk. Poorly performing heaters and furnaces can waste lots of energy and money, as well as cause fires and leak carbon monoxide and other gases. Make sure to also check and clean the attached air ducts and heating vents. Fireplaces While we don’t use fireplaces often in SD, they are a massive fire risk if not cared for and cleaned well. You can make sure the fireplace itself is cleaned out and can check for damage to the chimney and fireplace. Check to see if the damper is working properly and keep it closed when not burning a fire to keep out drafts. Consider hiring a professional chimney sweep once a year to inspect and clean the whole system, especially if you use the fireplace frequently. Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors NCPG checks the detectors on our properties twice a year, looking at the battery life as well as the condition of the detector itself. The fire and CO dangers are higher during the fall and winter months with increased use of furnaces, fireplaces, and holiday lights. Check out our blog on smoke and CO detectors in San Diego to learn more about their maintenance and regulations. Drafts Another way to conserve energy and money is to examine all of your doors and windows for cracks, gaps, and holes. Look for damaged or missing weather stripping or caulking. Repairing or replacing these issues should prevent drafts, pests, and precipitation from entering the house. Also check for cracks and holes around any cable, phone, or gas line entry points. Gutters Keeping your gutters and downspouts clear will prevent your gutters from overrunning and causing damage to your walls, roof, and foundation. Make sure the water is diverted away from the house so it doesn’t pool around the house or go into the basement. Clean the gutters up before the rain comes and then continue to check periodically through the winter for blockages. Roofing Check your roof for any damaged or sagging areas and for missing or damaged shingles. Look at that the flashing and around any vents and antennas to see that they are in good condition. Go up to the attic during the day to see if there is any light shining through the roof to point out leaks. Look for stains or peeling paint on the walls and ceilings that can signal a leak from the roof or pipe. Examining all of these things again right after the first rain will show anything you missed. Landscaping In San Diego, the weather usually stays pretty consistent, so many of our plants stick around throughout the year. This fall may be a different story so a little more care may be required for your yard and gardens. Keep your trees trimmed, especially removing any branches that are unstable or overhanging buildings, power lines, and fences. Make sure your gardens are well maintained and graded so if there are torrential downpours, your soil won’t be washed away. Keep all drainage ditches and water pathways clear for proper drainage. Extra Considerations for El Nino Many people might remember the last strong El Nino during the winter of 1997/1998, which brought an above normal amount of precipitation and a high level of flooding. The Weather Channel suggests this year's El Nino could be stronger than the 97/98 event. So besides the usual preparations for fall, there might be several other things to keep in mind. Move valuables off of the floors or place into waterproof containers. Secure any lawn furniture, umbrellas, and accessories so wind and rain isn’t moving anything. Make sure your sump pump is functioning properly if you have one. There is a good chance we may be experiencing power outages so it might be a good idea to have extra supplies on hand such as water, food, and flashlights. The California Coastal Commission has more information about El Nino in California and what you need to do to prepare - to see more, click here. We would highly suggest hiring any professionals and making any repairs now before the usual fall rush. If inclement weather does strike, having different professionals’ contact info on hand could save you time and get you taken care of first. North County Property Group has a fall checklist that we use for all of the properties we manage, including checking things like gutters and furnaces. It has been a while since our properties have received a lot of rain, so we are taking extra care to be prepared for this winter. Happy Fall! Fall Preparation for San Diego Homes Located in Del Mar (Carmel Valley), California, North County Property Group provides real estate sales & leasing, property management, and vacation rental services in the various communities throughout the greater North County San Diego area (click here to see communities served). For more information about North County Property Group, visit https://www.ncpropertygroup.com, or contact the company at 12526 High Bluff Drive, Suite 145, San Diego, CA 92130, USA; Tel: 858.792.5797; Fax: 858.777.5451; E-mail: info(at)ncpropertygroup(dot)com to learn how we’re redefining Del Mar real estate sales and leasing, property management, and vacation rentals in North County San Diego. Follow North County Property Group on Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and YouTube.