Winterizing Checklist

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The winter weather may not have really hit us quite yet, but it’s always a good idea to make sure your property and tenants are safe. Here are a few simple things you should check off your list to make sure your property is prepared for severe winter weather:

  • Make sure your building’s furnace or boiler has been serviced at least once within the past year
  • Schedule a professional cleaning for any chimneys
  • Clean out gutters and downspouts to clear debris 
  • Drain and shut off any pipes that flow to outside faucets
  • Change the batteries in all smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and test them    
  • Rake all debris away from the foundation
  • Insulate any pipes that have a risk of freezing
  • Service or tune-up snow blowers
  • Stock up on bags of ice-melt/sand (Ice-melt that is safe for animals are suggested for buildings that allow pets)
  • Replace worn shovels

Remember, property owners in Massachusetts can now be held liable for snow-related injuries -- regardless of whether snow plows cleared the snow. The Supreme Judicial Court ruled that property owners have a “duty to keep the property reasonably safe,” so it is important for landlords, property managers, business owners and homeowners alike to make reasonable efforts to remove the snow as well as the hazards of freezing snow and ice.