With autumn officially arriving at the end of the month, it’s time to shut down summer and prepare for the upcoming season. As I’m sure most of us are relieved to have the cool whether set in, we easily forget about house chores that autumn brings. Many people like to do their fall cleaning and holiday preparations at the same time. I don’t know about you but that seems like a lot of stress. That’s why we’ve created the complete fall cleaning checklist. Knock out these tasks as fall sets in, when it’s applicable to do so, if you want less to worry about during the holidays. Doesn’t that sound nice?


1. Unclutter the gutter

The leaves are already beginning to fall at a rapid pace. It’s time to clean out those rain gutters to ensure the freshly fallen leaves don’t overcrowd your roof. Gutters that are over encumbered when it’s raining have a risk of failing and damaging the house.


2. Clean and put away the grill

If you or your family like to grill all year round, come rain or snow, by all means ignore this task. However, if you know you won’t be grilling in the colder weather, it’s time to put up the grill for the next two seasons. Give your grill a full and thorough cleaning, as well as its accessories and place it back in the garage, shed, or cover with a protector.


3. Cover outside spas and pool

Again, if you or your family use the spa or pool all year, feel free to ignore this task. If you don’t have a heated pool or just don’t use the hot tub when it gets chilly, it’s time to wrap it up. Make sure you follow proper procedures for cleaning or emptying these areas and cover to protect from the elements and many, many autumn leaves.


4. Flip the mattresses

You should flip your mattresses twice a year and there’s no better time than before the holidays. If you frequently have stay over company, this helps to revitalize and plump guest beds as well as your own. When the holidays arrive, this will be one less thing to take care of in the guest spaces.


5. Sweep the chimney

September is actually a great time to book a chimney cleaning or do it yourself. If you wait any longer to book, you risk higher prices or a longer wait due to higher demand. Right now, it’s not top of mind for most people since most fireplaces aren’t used until mid-November or later in the winter. A bonus tip, you can also get firewood and starters now and check that off your holiday shopping list.


6. Start swapping out clothes

This is an important one: packing up summer clothes and bringing out winter clothes. On some level, the majority of us loathe the dreaded clothing swapping. Our advice is to do it little by little starting now. It’s not the most convenient thing in the world to round up all your slim, warm weather clothing in exchange for the bulky sweaters and boots, but it has to be done. If you take care of a bag’s worth of clothing at a time and you’ll be done by the beginning of October.


7. Do a light cleaning in the guest rooms

It’s not necessary to go all out when cleaning your guest spaces if there’s no guests who will be occupying the room for a while. However, a little bit of cleaning can help relieve some of the work that does happen right before they arrive. Change the bedding, vacuum, and do a quick dusting. When the time comes to prepare for someone spending the night, all you’ll need to do is another light dusting and final touches.


8. Clean the A/C ducts

The hot and steamy summer months tend to build and collect gunk on your vents when the air conditioning is kicked into high gear. Give your vents a quick wipe with an antibacterial wet cloth or microfiber to remove those unsightly black lines.


9. Make room in the pantry

Canned pumpkin, flour, and sugar are just a few fall cooking items that can take up a large chunk of room in your pantry. It’s time to clean out old and expired items to make room for fall and holiday cooking. The more cluttered your pantry the more likely it is for ingredients to get lost or for crumbs and liquids to spill. The last thing you need when cooking is to be missing an item or find flour beetles crawling around your pantry!


10. Prep the décor zones around the house

Lastly on our list is preparing the areas of your house you place seasonal decorations. If you’re the kind of house that decorates for every season, you’re well-versed in prepping décor zones. If not, prepping before major holidays can help you save time in the long run. Clean and dust areas were you’re most likely to decorate for the upcoming season. Common examples include mantles and window seals, staircase railings, the fireplace area, and hallway or entryway tables. You can wait to do this task in October if you don’t decorate for Halloween.