When it comes to seasonal maintenance of your property and landscaping, there’s no question that things slow down in winter. But although the colder months may offer a welcome break from your usual warm weather yard chores, there’s one item on your winter to-do list that should never be neglected: snow removal.
Why do you need to worry about snow removal?
After a snowfall, you might enjoy the sight of your home looking like a winter wonderland, but there are a few reasons why you shouldn’t put off removing snow from your property.
Snow removal promotes safety.
Did you know that, according to data from the CDC, roughly 1 million Americans every year sustain injuries from slipping and falling on ice and snow? The fact is that even small amounts of snow can pose a slipping hazard, and the longer snow is left on the ground, the more likely it is to become compacted and icy, and therefore more slippery. Removing snow helps everyone who uses your property—from family members to delivery workers to passersby—stay safe.
Snow removal maintains accessibility.
If snow-covered sidewalks are risky even for healthy and able adults, they are far more so for people with mobility issues. Removing snow from your property promptly helps keep things accessible for people who use wheelchairs, canes, or other mobility aids to get around.
Snow removal is neighborly.
Thinking about how your actions affect your neighbors is a big part of being a homeowner. You appreciate it when your neighbors keep their paths clear of snow, so it’s important to show them the same courtesy.
Snow removal ensures compliance with local codes and ordinances.
Of course, removing snow isn’t just a way to show goodwill to your neighbors: it’s also a way to avoid breaking the law. Many cities and municipalities have bylaws or ordinances in place that require snow to be removed within a certain timeframe. If you fail to do so, you might incur fines or other penalties, and you may be liable if someone is injured on your property.
Snow removal keeps business running.
Do you run a home-based business or see clients at your house? Prospective customers may decide to take their business elsewhere if they feel like snow and ice are making it too difficult or unsafe to access your property.
Snow removal prevents landscaping damage.
Heavy snowfall can make it difficult to tell where sidewalks or pathways end and your garden beds begin, meaning that visitors to your home can trample delicate plant material without realizing it. Keeping paths clear of snow mean that other parts of your yard and landscaping can stay protected. (Just be sure not to pile snow up too heavily on your lawn, as this can dry out the soil and damage or kill the grass below.)
Who should remove snow from your property?
For homeowners with the time and the proper equipment, snow removal is often a DIY task. However, there are some situations in which it can make more sense to let professionals handle the job.
You might want to consider hiring a snow removal service if:
You have extensive driveways and sidewalks.
If your property has a long driveway, extensive sidewalks and pathways, and multiple points of entry, it could take you hours of shoveling before things are fully clear. For most working professionals or people with busy family responsibilities, this isn’t always feasible. A snow removal service can make sure your property is thoroughly cleared of snow without you having to take time out of your already-full schedule.
Heavy snowfalls are common in your area.
Shoveling snow a few times during the winter might not be a big deal, but if heavy snowfalls are a regular event in your area, it might be worth outsourcing your snow removal needs. Even if professional snow removers service your property just once or twice, after particularly heavy snowfalls, it can make it much easier for you to keep things clear on your own the rest of the time.
Time is of the essence.
Sometimes, it’s important to remove snow from your property as quickly as possible: for example, if you’re expecting visitors, if weather conditions mean the snow is likely to turn to dangerous ice soon, or if your home business needs to be accessible to clients right away. With their experience and specialized equipment, a professional service can ensure that snow is removed as quickly as you need it to be.
You’re away for long periods during the winter.
Being out of town when a major snowfall occurs doesn’t absolve you from the responsibility of removing snow from your property. If you’re often away from home during the winter, it could make sense to have a snow removal service on call for the season. This means that you don’t always need to check the weather back home and make a service appointment every time it snows. Instead, you can set up an ongoing arrangement where the company clears your property every time there’s a major snowfall, or whenever snow levels reach a certain height.