The Home Buyer's Korner

Information presented should be used for educational purposes only.

November 6th, 2013

Guy looking up in color

Fall Tips for New Home Owners 

So you bought your first home; the kids are back in school; the weather is getting cooler and the yard is covered with fallen leaves. It’s that time of the year and being a new home owner you need to put yourself in the mindset that your home is yours; it’s most likely your biggest investment and fall leaves shouldn’t be looked upon as a chore. They can be a useful resource for fertilizing your lawn or even decorating your home for autumn.

It’s tempting to just let the leaves lay in the yard, after all its nature’s way of fertilizing, right?  Well, no it’s not right. You should rake everything up as soon as the trees begin to look bare, or else risk the blanket of leaves smothering your lawn over the winter season and it doesn’t make for friendly neighbors.

Gather them up in plastic bags and put them to use. If you can’t bring yourself to pick up a rake, do the alternative. Wait until the leaves are dry and crunchy, fire up the lawnmower and if your movers has a mulch setting that will chop the leaves to bit all the better.  Repeat the process before winter!  Making this a seasonal event will insure your yard not only looks clean and welcoming, it’s a good start for spring and can save time and money revitalizing your yard next year.

Well chopped up pieces won’t suffocate your lawn, and well chopped up leaves do make a good fertilizer. If you’re planning on creating flowers beds or a garden next year use a grass clipping catcher with your mower to gather up the pieces as you mow and store them away for spring. Fresh chopped leaves are also good homemade mulch, so don’t forget about any existing flower beds the previous owner created. Put a healthy layer on the flower bed and it will help replenish the soil over the winter months.  Also, be sure to put a thick layer around young trees and shrubs to keep their roots warm. If you really want to get the most out of your leaves consider building a compost pile.  They’re easy to build and save a lot money by not having to buy fertilizer next year. Mixing the leaves in with the regular green yard waste and household leftovers like apple peelings will boost the composting process into overdrive and a fully composted material makes a potent fertilizer.

Set some leaves aside to take indoors. The changing colors of the fall leaves are part of the beauty of autumn. Why not bring some of that beauty into the house and for those cold days ahead you and the kids can get creative using leaves for etching, or simply use one as a bookmark.

Learning to be a savvy eco home owner takes time and it’s the little things that count. Remember, your building memories and for me it’s sad to see so many fall leaves burned up in piles, or put out with the trash. The leaves on the lawn aren’t just a mess to cleaned up, they’re a natural resource for you to bring the family together. Be sure to put your to use this year!

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