To-Dos: Your August Home Checklist
Updated: Oct 25
This summer wrap-up checklist from Houzz.com is excellent. Enjoy!
Transition smoothly from summer to fall by taking care of warm-weather gear, checking energy efficiency and more.
From the dog days of summer to the first days of school, August is a month of transition for many. Even if cool fall nights still seem ages away, the transition from outdoors to in is already beginning. So as your vacation wraps up and dinners begin to move from grill to stove, consider putting one or more of these to-dos on your list to make that transition as smooth as possible.
1. Get prepped for dinners at home. With fall around the corner, meals are likely to shift away from the grill and into the kitchen. Encourage family dinners at home by making the dining room a place you can’t wait to sit down in. Clear the table, bring in flowers or potted plants and keep stacks of fresh table linens at hand. If you want to make things even easier, consider storing silverware and cloth napkins in a caddy right on the table.
2. Tidy the mudroom. Whether or not you have kids in the house, back-to-school time is a great opportunity to get a busy entryway under control. Clear the clutter, clean rugs, wipe down shelving and put back only the essentials.
3. Organize family photos. Don’t let months go by after summer vacations to print and organize photos — get on top of it now, so you can enjoy your snapshots! Set yourself up for photo organizing success through the rest of the year by creating files for digital photos organized by month. If you want to have new family portraits taken in time, start hunting for a photographer now.
If you have a big backlog of printed photos to organize but lack the time to go through each one, at least get them into acid-free storage boxes to prevent damage. Label the boxes by year if possible.
4. Edit your wardrobe. Sort through your summer clothes before putting them away; give away anything that is no longer working for you. Look over your fall wardrobe, setting aside anything that needs repairs or that you no longer like. Make a note of anything missing.
5. Boost closet organization. While you’re at it, see if there is a better way to organize your closet. Could you use a small chest of drawers? A few baskets to collect dry cleaning and delicates? Hooks for necklaces and scarves?
6. Conduct an energy audit of your house. Find places to increase energy efficiency and improve the health of your home (and save money) by conducting a home energy assessment, either on your own or with the help of a pro. This assessment will help locate air leaks and check ventilation, insulation, heating and cooling systems, appliances and more. Check out Energy.gov for more information on conducting your own home energy audit.
7. Deep clean your kitchen. Take a few hours to tackle the dirtiest kitchen chores: clear the drains, clean out the garbage can and recycling bins, degrease the oven and thoroughly clean out the fridge. And when you’re done? You totally deserve an ice cream.
8. Refresh the pantry. If you haven’t done so yet, invest in a set of matching, airtight storage containers in a variety of sizes. Decanting food into clear, airtight containers makes it easier to find what you need and helps food stay fresh longer.
Bonus tip: Use erasable or removable labels, so you can customize the container to the contents. If you’re storing pasta or something else with a specific cooking time, note the instructions on the label as well.
9. Clean and replace caulk and grout. A proper seal around sinks, toilets, shower stalls and tubs, and between tiles, is essential to keep water from seeping into cracks and causing damage. Clean grout and caulk with a narrow scrub brush and inspect its condition. Replace caulk or grout as needed.
10. Put away summer gear. As the summer winds down, inspect your summer gear for damage and clean it before storing it for next year. Scoop up a few new items at end-of-season sales to replace anything that needs to be tossed.