The change of seasons always triggers some sort of home maintenance “To Do” list. You winterize your home before the cold weather hits. When spring is in the air, you going on a cleaning frenzy. Some tasks fall off the radar because they’re not necessarily part of the seasonal home care routine. As a responsible homeowner, put these 7 annual home maintenance chores on someone’s “To Do” list. #1. Clean the gutters. Late fall is a great time to scoop out all the dead leaves that fell of the trees and landed in your gutters. You’ll probably find a lost ball, sticks, and formerly living things that expired there. Clogged gutters can send water into your home, instead of allowing runoff to the ground. Don your work gloves, climb the ladder, and make gutter cleaning a priority! #2. Clean your rugs and carpets. No matter how often you vacuum, there’s nothing like a good steam-cleaning to revive your carpets. The heat kills germs and any other living organisms, like fleas, that stow away deep in the fibers. You’ll be amazed at the color and texture that springs back. And since you rented that steam cleaner, you might consider tackling your upholstery, too! #3. Wash the windows. Nothing improves your outlook quite like clean windows. You don’t realize how much dirt has built up on your windows until you have a crystal clear, streak-free view. Make an annual date with your windows, inside and out. If you have the energy-efficient windows that tilt inward for easy cleaning, it’s an easy job. Worst case scenario? Hire a window washer. #4. Clean out your drawers. From junk drawers to sock drawers, any place that can hide “stuff” needs an annual purge. Empty every drawer in your home—one at a time, of course. Sort through the contents. Throw out the excess stash of pens and pencils, the miscellany of sticky note pads, paper clips, old receipts, and rubber bands. Discard socks and underwear that have seen better days. Vacuum the empty drawer before replacing what you’re keeping. #5. Prune your trees. It’s easy to overlook the branches hanging off your trees, but take a little time to go around your yard and cut those stragglers. A good clipping will also promote healthier growth. #6. Bring in a pest control pro. You might not see pests, but by the time you do, they’re a problem. Hire an exterminator to check your home once a year, inside and out, to avoid damage and discomfort that can be caused by termites, rodents, roaches, fleas, bedbugs, and more. #7. Visit a neighborhood open house. It’s not being nosy. Houses for sale in your neighborhood will reflect the resale value of your own home. You’ll discover what buyers are looking for, what impresses them, and what doesn’t. The effort you put forward for these 7 annual home maintenance chores will save you money and add a boost to the enjoyment you experience in your home, sweet home.