Paying Housing Expenses First

Paying your housing expenses should be one of your top priorities, even when times are tough.

After groceries and food expenses, it can be tempting to spend your money elsewhere, but paying your housing expenses first is the key to healthy financial habits and a successful homeownership.

To help you organize your payments, we made a list of which housing expenses is best to pay first.

Shoes in a home where you pay housing expenses first

Mortgage Payment

This is, without a doubt, the first payment you should be making every month.

Things like buying a new car may feel like a good idea before making your mortgage payment, but they’re not.

 

When you start down a path of paying your mortgage late, you jeopardize your homeownership status and credit.

 

Paying your mortgage payments first and on time will build your credit history, and shows future lenders that you are a consistent and responsible homeowner.   

 

While rent payments don’t affect you credit, establishing healthy financial habits is important and help keep a roof over your head.

Utilities

Part of keeping a roof over your head and making sure your homeownership payments are paid first is paying utilities.

 

Gas, electricity, and water are the prime utilities that need to be paid in order to maintain a running household.  

 

With all the streaming options available these days, many have opted to get rid of their cable bill for a more cost effective option.

Home Insurance

Paying your home insurance is vital to protecting your home and belongings from any unexpected incidents.

 

Theft, loss and or damage in or outside your home might not be a common occurrence, but having up-to-date home insurance will help you cover the unexpected costs.

 

Home insurance will help with covering the cost of repairs as well as accommodations. For example, if a fire occurred in your home and you became displaced, home insurance would cover the cost of living in a hotel.

 

Monthly home insurance payments are vital to being prepared for emergency situations pertaining to your home.    

Maintenance Costs

Another very important housing cost you should always pay first is home maintenance.

Even if you don’t have an emergency savings fund, make sure that you spend your money on repairs before buying other items you may not need.

 

If home maintenance items aren’t addressed right away, they could end up costing you even more money in the long run.

 

For example, a damaged piece of siding could cause allow moisture to form in your home and cause mold. A small crack in the foundation could lead to water seeping into your home and causing damage to the basement and walls.

 

 

 

Avoiding your home maintenance could have a domino effect taking a bad issue and making it worse.

 

To prevent major damage and stay on top of your home maintenance, check out this blog or download our home maintenance checklist to help you.

Property Taxes

Your property taxes are another housing cost you should always pay first. Even though this payment comes once a year, it’s important to pay by the due date.

 

If you make a late payment, many municipalities and counties have a late payment penalty. The longer the payment is outstanding, the more interest you will end up paying.

 

A great way to prevent this from happening and to avoid a lump sum payment is getting your property taxes incorporated into your monthly mortgage payment. This will ensure your property taxes are paid on-time avoiding additional interest charges.

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Retain the Value of Your Home

Getting your home is exciting, but understanding how to retain value in your home is essential!

Whether you move into a brand-new turnkey home, or an older fixer-upper, updating and maintaining it are key to successful homeownership.

When you first start the path of being a homeowner, you want to customize everything and make the home feel like it’s truly your own. But, over time that energy could fade and the momentum could drop.

We’ve put together a list of 5 tips to increase (and retain!) the value of your home.

Tip 1) Painting

This is one of the best ways to retain value in your home!

It can be a very minimal upgrade, or completely change the look and feel of your home. Choosing trendy colours can offer a complete refresh and help keep your home looking up-to-date.  

Homeowners can go to a local hardware store, or specialty paint store, and look at a paint swatches with hundreds of colours to choose from.

Many specialty paint stores have colours of the year that can offer a good selection of trending colours.

feature wall painted mint that helps retain the value of your home

Photo Credit: Rachel Claire @pexels.com

You don’t have to repaint the entire house, even just a few feature walls in a couple rooms can change the look and feel/refresh the space.

Doing this helps in retaining the value of your home for a lower cost than some other home repair/refresh options.

Tip 2) Curb Appeal

Curb appeal is an important factor when it comes to retaining the value of your home.

It’s the first impression when someone pulls up to where you live. Often though, the outside of the house can often be overlooked, leaving curb appeal can be underrated.

 

While getting professional landscaping can break the budget for some, making small changes that are budget-friendly can help you retain the value of your home as well.

 

Adding a couple of shrubs or some charming flowers, like peonies or dahlias, is an easy way to increase the value of your home for a small cost.

 

If you face north, getting hosta plants for the shadier spaces makes your yard look well kept.

You don’t have to be a green-thumb, perennials are a good investment as they come back each year. Annuals are a good option if you’d like to change up the flowers each year.

 

Going a step further and removing the grass to add mulch with a few shrubs and flowers is also a trendy, low-maintenance way to increase your curb appeal and value.

 

If gardening isn’t your thing, doing something as simple as painting your door with a pop of colour like red can be a great way to go.

 

In fact, in some cultures red is considered lucky and can also mean ‘welcome’ or represent a safe haven.

lighting fixtures that help you retain the value of your home

Photo Credit: Max Vakhtbovych @pexels.com

Tip 3) Lighting

Lighting can set the ambience of your space and is a simple way to retain the value of your home.

 

You can get lighting fixtures that are hung from the ceiling, a floor lamp, or a small table lamp.

 

Get creative and decide if you want to invest in a statement dining chandelier or entrance lighting fixture or perhaps spread out the budget and opt for ceiling lamps around the entire house.

 

These lighting changes will have a lasting effect and bring an updated look helping increase the value of your home.

 

Local hardware stores have selection of lights you can easily install yourself. You can even order lighting online and have it delivered right to your door.

 

You can choose traditional designs, rustic styles, or contemporary options like pendant lights which have been very popular over the last several years.

Tip 4) Regular Maintenance

Not everything to retain value in your home has to do with aesthetics. Proper home maintenance is also very important.

 

Inspecting your roof to ensure that no shingles need to be replaced is something many homebuyers look. Having this maintained is great for retaining the value of your home.

In addition, making sure the concrete in and around your home isn’t cracked can help determine if there are some foundation issues that need to be tackled.

 

This is also a good way to prevent any potential flooding which could cause a lot of damage, with repairs that could hit your pocket hard.

 

Maintaining your appliances is also very important. While kitchen appliances are usually the first ones to be tended to, make sure you look at the furnace and hot water tank as well. 

 

When you go to sell a home, potential buyers often will have a home inspection done. Regular maintenance ensures you’re not caught off guard with any issues that might come up on the inspection.

Tip 5) Annual Spring Clean/Stay Organized

A simple, yet very effective way to retain value in your home is by keeping it clean and organized.

 

Weekly cleaning and tidying are great, but doing an annual spring clean will not only ensure that your home is good shape but has health benefits as well. By staying on top of your weekly cleaning and tidying you can also improve the air quality in your home.

 

This can also create a clean, clutter free space which helps reduce stress, as well as increase focus and productivity.

 

Another simple, yet effective solution to retaining value in your home is keeping everything organized.

 

This way you are able to see all angles of your home and get into all the nooks and crannies to do any maintenance or repairs when needed.

 

Clean wall scuffs with magic erasers, fill-in wall dents or nail holes, replace weather-stripping on doors due to wear and tear.

Other Ways to Retain Value

In addition to our tips, you can always add value to your home by choosing to spend a little bit more and change items like cabinets, flooring or even redo your entire kitchen. While these are great options, they could be more costly than our list of tips above.

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Interest Rate Increase in Canada

As first-time homebuyers navigate the mortgage process, there is a lot to learn. Last week, the Bank of Canada increased their benchmark interest rate to 1.5%.


This hike in interest rate comes a couple of months after the initial 0.5% increaseThe interest rate before the pandemic was 1.75% and was decreased to 0.25% after the pandemic to help the economy.


As per CBC News, “Nathan Janzen, an economist with RBC, thinks Canada’s central bank is on track for a series of larger-than-normal hikes in a row, until its rate gets to roughly three per cent. Canada’s benchmark interest rate hasn’t hit that level since the 2008 financial crisis.”
 

Source: CBC News; Chart: Pete Evans, Source: Statistics Canada

How it affects buyers

While increased interest rates lower consumer prices, and home prices—they increase mortgage rates.

 

This has led some new homebuyers to put homeownership on the backburner. But for some, homeownership is more urgent.

 

Many want to put down roots in a community and ensure that there is no risk of them having to move. They want their kids to have consistency, go to the same school throughout their educational years and be able to have the same classmates.

 

Others are looking for more privacy. They might have a newborn who is up all night and don’t want to be ‘that neighbour’.

 

Even home décor could be a motivating factor. When you rent, you may not have the opportunity to paint the walls, or change the flooring. With homeownership, you don’t have to get anyone else’s approval—you can just go for it!

 

In some cases, the underwriter requests additional documentation from the potential homeowner. Items like a bank statement showing a portion of a credit card was paid off are common requests.

 

Once the underwriter has everything, the review process takes approximately 72 hours before the potential homeowner receives an approval for the mortgage.

A path to homeownership

EP Homes offers a Bridge to Own™ program that offers homebuyers with good credit the opportunity to be homeowners with no down payment.

 

 

All payments consist of monthly rent + a savings component. At the end of the term, the savings you’ve accumulated will become your down payment. Other programs often ask that you have a portion of the down payment before you begin your homeownership journey.

 

 

Our program also offers complimentary credit coaching to all clients. Helping you establish healthy financial habits to get you mortgage ready is very important to us.

 

 

We want to help guide you through your path to homeownership and understand that every client is different. Our lease terms are flexible ranging from 1 to 3 years to accommodate different client journeys.

 

 

Our mission is to help as many everyday people become their best financial selves as homeowners with good credit and no down payment. Do you know someone who would be a great fit for EP Homes’ Bridge to Own™ program?

 

 

Well we have a referral program! For any colleague, friend, or family member that completes an application and is approved for the program and moves in, you will qualify for $1,000*.

 

 

*more details here: https://ephomes.ca/referrals/

source: https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/bank-of-canada-rate-hike-1.6467922

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What is Mortgage Underwriting

As first-time homebuyers navigate the mortgage process, there is a lot to learn.

All you want to do as a potential homeowner is ask the bank for a mortgage, get the stamp of approval, and receive the keys to your home.  

But what is underwriting? And where does it fit into the process of homeownership?

Underwriting Explained

Underwriting is the process of verifying the accuracy of the supporting documentation provided by potential homeowners.

 

To determine if a potential homeowner is able to take on the financial responsibility of homeownership, they have to go through the underwriting review process.

 

A mortgage broker, or bank representative, will gather background information from the potential homeowner including:

 

  • a letter of employment
  • verification of income (usually in the form of a Notice of Assessment)
  • your debt service calculations
  • document confirming your down payment
  • credit bureau reports-purchase contract for the home you are wanting to purchase

 

Photo Credit: Cytonn Photography @pexels.com

In some cases, the underwriter requests additional documentation from the potential homeowner. Items like a bank statement showing a portion of a credit card was paid off are common requests.

Once the underwriter has everything, the review process takes approximately 72 hours before the potential homeowner receives an approval for the mortgage.

Why do we need underwriting?

The underwriter works on behalf of the lender behind-the-scenes. The lender relies on the underwriter to thoroughly review a potential homeowner’s information and determines if they are deemed safe to lend hundreds of thousands of dollars to.

 

If a homebuyer’s credit history isn’t exactly what the underwriter is looking for, the underwriter may deny the mortgage with that particular lender.

 

While there are other private lenders that may take on the potential homeowner, this option will likely include a higher interest rate and may end up being more costly for the individual or family in the long run.

Alternative Solutions

Our Bridge to Own™ program can set a homebuyer onto the path of homeownership, even without an ideal credit history.

Photo Credit: Adobe Stock

As everyday people we want to help everyone be their best financial selves.

Our team wants to learn about a potential homeowner’s financial story including the challenges that they had to face that got them to this point in their financial journey.  

 

We understand that everyday people go through financial hardship brought on by life’s circumstances such as divorce, job loss or even a global pandemic and want to give everyone the opportunity to move forward and get back on their feet.

Homeownership

Our homeownership program can get a potential homeowner into a brand-new turnkey home. We cover additional expenses such as: closing costs, major appliances and landscaping that are not usually provided with rent-to-own programs.

With a focus on your entire financial journey, we also provide complimentary credit education and coaching to help you navigate the path of homeownership and your other financial obligations.

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Tips for First-time Homebuyers in Canada

You’re a first-time homebuyer in Canada, so what’s next?


To help answer all the questions you might have, and ones you might not even be aware of, we’ve done the research for you and put together a First-time Homebuyers Guide to help you with purchasing your first home in Canada. No matter where you are on your journey, this blog answers questions that will lead you down the path of homeownership.

Research:

– Determine how much of a mortgage you qualify for depending on your debt ratio

  • How much of a down payment you have
  • -Whether you will need CMHC insurance (a mortgage insurance that let’s you get a loan for as much as 95% of the purchase price)
  • Inform you of how much your average closing costs will be

Step 1) Understand how a credit score works

A credit score is crucial to buying a home in Canada. When you buy a house, lenders will look at your credit score to determine if you are qualified to handle the financial obligation of a mortgage, and to determine their risk level when they lend you money. In Canada, a credit score is a rating between 300 and 900 and is determined by your credit history. Your credit history is made up of what type of credit or open accounts you have, your total levels of debt and how consistent you are with making your payments.

So, what is considered a good credit score? For both first-time homebuyers and previous owners the ratings are:

There are more nuances to credit scores than just paying your bills on time. Before buying your first home in Canada, make sure you know what your credit score is, and how a credit score works so that you know all the criteria that goes into calculating it.


At EP Homes, we have a team of credit coaches that will work with you to make sure that you are well-prepared before buying your first home in Canada. Contact us today to talk to a credit expert!

Step 2) First-time Homebuyer Programs in Canada

There are many first-time homebuyer programs in Canada. These programs can provide you with financial assistance and tax breaks like the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive or other rebates (Source: CMHC-SCHL) that will assist you the purchase of your first home in Canada. 

Step 3) Down Payment

Acquiring a down payment can be a hurdle that first-time homebuyers come across. A down payment is the money that homebuyers pay towards the purchase of a home. In Canada, people are usually required to pay 5-20% of the house price for the down payment. This amount must be saved prior to obtaining a mortgage.


If your down payment is less than 20% of the house’s purchase price, you are required to pay for insurance on the mortgage. Based on how much a down payment you have, your lender will explain what the premiums for the insurance are on top of your monthly payment. 


However, with our EP Homes Bridge to Own ™ program, first-time homebuyers in Canada can lease and live in their brand-new homes while saving for a down payment and set onto the path to homeownership. It’s really 0% down.

 

To find out if you qualify for our Bridge to Own™ program, contact us today!

Step 4) Closing Costs

First-time homebuyers often overlook the closing costs when buying a home. Other than saving for the down payment and preparing to pay for the mortgage, future homeowners should start saving for the closing costs as well.

 

These costs can range between 3-5% of the purchase price and will cover fees such as: land transfer tax, GST/HST on a new home purchase, legal and administrative fees for closing a real estate transaction, moving and insurance costs, and home inspection costs.

 

It is important for first-time homebuyers to save and be prepared for these expenses in advance so that they are not in the red when it is time to close on their home.

Step 5) Get yourself ready to pay a mortgage

Once you have saved up enough for the previously mentioned costs, it’s time to get a mortgage pre-approval. You need to figure out if you can afford a mortgage. A pre-approval will let you know the maximum amount you qualify for and estimate your mortgage payments.


While pre-approvals aren’t mandatory, they give you an idea of what types of houses you can afford and assist with setting a budget.


While setting up a budget, you should take your household income, personal monthly expenses, property taxes, condo fees, utility bills, and an emergency fund for life’s unexpected expenses into consideration.

We're here for you

Buying your first home in Canada may seem like a daunting experience, but it doesn’t have to be. Before you start looking for your dream home, make sure you should know your financial situation and start saving.

 

 

 

Want to talk to an expert? Book a consultation session with us to talk about homeownership in Canada and find out if you are qualified to buy your first home with $0 down payment through our EP Homes Bridge to Own™ homeownership program!

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Rent-to-Own vs. Bridge to Homeownership™

Over the last few years rent-to-own programs have become a popular method of homeownership for individuals and families who would otherwise not be able to own their own home.

But, what is rent to own? And how is our Bridge to Homeownership™ program different?

Bridge to Homeownership™ 

With other rent-to-own programs offering the opportunity of homeownership, a down payment is required up front. These rent-to-own programs ask for a 3-5% down, which many people may not have saved enough for causing additional financial stress to some potential homeowners.

 

Our Bridge to Homeownership™ program really is 0% down!

 

Unlike many other rent-to-own programs, our Bridge to Homeownership™ program is exclusive to new builds. We offer you an opportunity to own a brand-new turnkey home! Once you’re approved, you can select your home from one of our partner home builders.

 

Eliminate the worry of any renovations or repairs needed to your property. Your new home has warranty and comes equipped with brand-new appliances.    

new homeowner using his new washer and dryer

Photo Credit: Rodnae Productions @pexels.com

Just imagine, the convenience of a new washer and dryer that is just for you and your family. If you are coming from an apartment, condo or shared living space where you had to make sure to get up extra early on a weekend just to beat the laundry room rush, you know how satisfying this is. 

 

These are just some of the benefits future homeowners dream about with other rent-to-own programs, but EP Homes Bridge to Homeownership™ makes these dreams a reality.

 

We are here to give your family a fresh start and even offer to pay for closing costs, which include legal fees; property insurance for the duration of the lease agreement; and a property appraisal.

 

All that plus we pay for the cost of GST!

This program gave me the chance to live in a new house in this great neighbourhood while  I save money for my down payment. I’m now a homeowner! I would highly recommend this program to everyone; I give it a 10/10… it works.

-Ryan W.  | EP Homes Graduate, Edmonton

How it works

Your payments consist of monthly rent + a savings component. At the end of your term, you’ll have your down payment from the savings you’ve accumulated—other rent-to-own programs often ask you to have a portion of the down payment ready beforehand.

 

Another advantage of using our program over other rent-to-own programs is that we offer complimentary credit coaching to all clients. We can guide you from a starter home to your forever home, by helping you establish positive financial habits and get your mortgage ready.

 

At the end of your term, you will have the down payment needed to qualify for a mortgage. We will introduce you to senior broker who will work with you to obtain a mortgage.  

Who is the Bridge to Homeownership™  program for?

We are not a one-size-fits-all program and will happily customize for every client with good credit, and no down payment, to see what you qualify for. EP Homes Bridge to Homeownership™ offers flexible lease terms ranging from 1 to 3-years to accommodate different client journeys. We want to get everyone on the path to homeownership and to help spread the word, so we have created a referral program.

 

By simply telling a friend, family or neighbour about the EP Homes Bridge to Homeownership™ program and asking them to complete an application, you will qualify for $1,000 once the referral is approved and they begin the Bridge to Homeownership™ program. 

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Spring Maintenance

Spring cleaning is a must-do just after the spring equinox, but let’s not forget about spring maintenance!

Inspecting both the interior and exterior of your home during the spring is like going to the doctor’s office for an annual checkup. You want to make sure that everything is operating well and is maintained properly so that you won’t have any surprises down the road which might make an unexpected dent in your wallet.  

With all the cleaning and organizing you have to do around the house during spring, we thought we’d save you the trouble of having to make your own spring-maintenance checklist. Below are some tips to help you get through your spring maintenance!

Tip 1) Air Conditioner

We’re jumping into the spring-maintenance checklist with summer’s most desired home appliance, air conditioners. With the recent summer heatwaves we’ve been having, it’s no wonder so many people have gotten air conditioners installed. Cleaning them off with a hose to get rid of any residual dirt or cobwebs is a good starting point to your spring maintenance routine. 

Tip 2) Eavestrough a.k.a Gutter or Rainspout

When the spring arrives, so does the rain. If you have any trees nearby, especially spruce or pine trees with needles on them, you’ll need to clear them out so that water doesn’t leak out of the eavestrough potentially causing pools of floods on the ground below. Also, if there are any leaks you will need to seal them.

Photo Credit: Adrien Olichon @pexels.com

Tip 3) Inspect the Roof

While shingles don’t have to be replaced every year (in fact it is usually every 10 years or so), you do need to include roof inspections in your spring-maintenance checklist. Most people can do this themselves, but if you do make sure you have a sturdy ladder to use and someone spotting you when you go on the roof. This task is easily done with tip #2 above.

If you choose to have someone else inspect the roof, ask them to take photos while they are up there so you can see for yourself what the condition of the shingles are.

Tip 4) Check Smoke Alarms

Sometimes spring-maintenance is as easy as changing out the battery. Most smoke detectors are battery operated and will beep at you when the battery is almost dead, but to get ahead of the game change the batteries twice a year – once in the fall and once during spring-maintenance, for good practice.

Tip 5) Cracks in the Concrete

Inspect the concrete in and around your house for cracks. This includes the foundation of your home, the sidewalk and the driveway. In the late winter and early spring, we start the freeze-thaw cycle. The snow that thaws turns into water which can seep into the concrete. When it freezes again, a lot of pressure is put on the concrete which can sometime expand so much that it causes cracks. It’s important to inspect everything properly and if there are cracks spotted, call a professional to seal them properly; especially for the foundation of your home which could lead to interior flooding if not taken care of right away.

Photo Credit: Polina Tankilevitch @pexels.com

Tip 6) Paint and/or Repair the Fence

Winter weather can take its toll on the exterior of our home, and nowhere is this more true than when you have a peek at the fence. Like the deck it’s subjected to rain and snow leading to potential paint and wood damage, but its vertical placement gives it the disadvantage of having the additional misfortune of bearing strong winds. This can cause loose panels and nails that have rusted because of being exposed to the elements.  

Tip 7) Check the Siding

Check under your siding to make sure there is no water damage, or on top of your siding depending on what type you have, this will prevent potential mold from growing. If you have vinyl siding and see a panel sticking out more than other panels, there is a high likelihood it’s because there is some moisture under it and you should get it replaced. 

Tip 8) Inspect Outdoor Faucets

When spring comes along, we reach for the outdoor hose to water our lawns and gardens. But before we can water our yards, it’s important to make sure that the hose and more importantly the faucet is intact. If the faucet has any leaks, you might need a new valve. Troubleshoot to see where the leaks are coming from and determine next steps from there.

Make sure to hold off on connecting the garden hose to the faucet until the chance of frost is completely ruled out. Prematurely connecting the hose can cause the waterline to freeze or the pipe/faucet to crack causing leaking into the basement if the temperature drops.   

Photo Credit: Chris Thornton @pexels.com

Tip 9) Window and Door Screens

Spring brings warmer weather, but it also brings bugs. Making sure that all the window and door screens are undamaged is vital to keeping all the bugs outside instead of in your home. Making sure the screen isn’t ripped is also important because it also acts as a barrier between your pets and the outdoors. We don’t want our fur babies running out whenever they want to, so make sure this item is on your spring-maintenance checklist. 

Tip 10) Garage Door Spring Maintenance

This one is easy to spot anytime of the year, but during spring-maintenance season, you will want to give it some extra attention. Signs to look for are things like, is the edge of the door on the tracks? Are there squeaky noises when you open or close the garage door? Is there rust anywhere on the frame? If you think your garage door requires professional maintenance, reach out to a specialized garage repair technician.

If you haven’t already, check out our spring-cleaning and organizing tips. For more home tips and resources, subscribe above and don’t forget to share us on social!

Spring Cleaning and Organizing Tips

Spring cleaning and organizing are big jobs—with so many things to clean and organize, it’s hard to know where to start. 

Sometimes spring cleaning can be overwhelming, so to help with all the cleaning and organizing we put together a list of tips to help you get into those hard-to-reach-places.

With our spring-cleaning checklist, you’re sure to get every nook and cranny including the ones that family member *you know who* always manages to spot when they come over!

Kitchen

The kitchen is one of the most used spaces in the house, so it’s no doubt that it’s the first mention on our spring-cleaning checklist. Getting to things like organizing the pantry and the kitchen cabinets is usually reserved for when we have time to rummage through everything, so it’s no wonder these items, along with several others, are usually taken on during spring cleaning.

Tip 1) Fridge

Most people can admit that moving the fridge every time they clean is not high on the chore priority list, but it shouldn’t be overlooked when doing your spring cleaning. Moving the fridge will give you a chance to clean all the dirt and dust that’s been secretly trapped underneath it on the floor.  

 

Since you’ve already pulled the fridge out, make sure to wipe down all sides of it while you do your spring cleaning. And don’t forget the interior! We all have jars and condiments that have been living in the fridge way past their expiry date—empty and recycle them, and give the fridge a good wipe on the inside as well. You’ll thank yourself for adding this to your spring-cleaning checklist. 

Tip 2) Microwave

Spray it down with vinegar and water (an economic and natural cleaning solution), then let it soak for a bit. While it’s common to clean your microwave, give it some extra attention during spring cleaning and clean the outside of it as well.  

Tip 3) Cabinets and Drawers

Take out all of your dishes and cutlery, and give both the inside and the outside a good scrub. It may be one of the more time-consuming, spring-cleaning tasks, but it will be worth it—we promise! 

Tip 4) Oven

Cleaning the oven is possibly one of the worst spring-cleaning checklist items, no matter how you go about it, the smell of oven cleaner always lingers in the air. If you have a self-cleaning oven, you are ahead of the game—though we do recommend opening the windows and staying out of the kitchen while you have it on as the temperature gets extremely hot.  

Tip 5) Pantry

Organizing the pantry is a satisfying task, but it takes some time. Depending on the size of the pantry, it can be a good idea to get some pantry organizing shelves and build a few tiers to better see everything you have in your pantry. Also, make sure to check the expiry dates on all of your food, it’s easy to let the items at the back of the pantry age well past their expiry date.

Photo Credit: Karolina Gabowska @pexels.com

Bathroom

Tip 1) Shower Curtains

While it is advised to do this at least every few months, you should include washing your shower curtain into your spring-cleaning checklist as well. Take the curtain off of the shower rods and throw it into the washing machine on the ‘delicates’ cycle and throw in a couple of towels to make sure it doesn’t get damaged. 

Tip 2) Cabinets

A crucial part of spring cleaning is purging. Getting rid of old makeup or medications in your bathroom cabinets will create some more space and make it easier to find things you are looking for—especially in the mornings before work! 

Tip 3) Grout

Often overlooked, cleaning the grout in your bathroom is an essential item to add to the spring-cleaning checklist. All you need is some grout cleaner, and you’re all set! 

Tip 4) Drain

Unclogging your shower drain should be done frequently, but give it some extra attention during spring cleaning. Most plumbers recommend that you avoid using a drain cleaning product because it could rust your pipes. Instead, try getting a drain cleaning tool found at most hardware stores.

Tip 5) Exhaust Fan

Even though we use it often, we don’t clean it often. Take the cover off your bathroom exhaust fan and give it a good wash to avoid mold build up.

Photo Credit: Burst @pexels.com

Bedroom

Tip 1) Blinds and Curtains

If you have blinds, removing them can be a bit of a hassle, but well worth it. Once you remove the blinds. Take them off and put them in the bathtub or shower so that you can rinse and wash them easily. If you can’t remove the blinds, vacuum them with the hand attachment.  If you have curtains, remove them from the rods and throw them into the washing machine on delicate. While tedious, this is an important spring-cleaning task.  

Tip 2) Under the Bed

Moving your bedframe or box spring out of the way in order to clean under it will likely be a two-person job. Grab your vacuum and give the floor or carpet a good scrub to check this item off of your spring-cleaning checklist. 

Tip 3) Dressers

Take everything off and out of your dresser. Wipe down both the interior and exterior.  

Tip 4) Closet

One of the most rewarding spring-cleaning items is cleaning out your closet! If you want to really get into it, you can colour code your clothes and arrange by occasion (but for the sake of getting through your spring-cleaning checklist this might be something you could hold off on doing until another time).  

Tip 5) Ceiling Fans

Dust and wipe them down to make sure the air circulating in your home is dust free. If you have AC, you can find tips on how to clean it in our Spring Maintenance article.  

As a bonus spring-cleaning item, don’t forget to clean all the baseboards!

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