Just because Spring is more than a month away, doesn’t mean you have to wait to get cleaning. You’re already spending a lot of time indoors where it’s warm and dry. You might as well improve your indoor air quality and rid your home of dirt accumulated last Summer and Fall.

I realize I am taking a risk this week that my wife sees the column, and, as a result, my Honey Do list suddenly gets longer. Regardless, completing these tasks now can keep Spring cleaning to a minimum. On its consumer website HouseLogic.com, the National Association of REALTORS® provides several tips for Winter cleaning.

Get out the vacuum and tackle the dryer vent. Not only does removing the lint build-up help dry your clothes faster, it also eliminates a potential fire hazard. And while you have out the vacuum, ask yourself when you last looked under your furniture. You may be surprised how many dust bunnies are hiding underneath.

Before putting away the vacuum, pull the refrigerator away from the wall and clean the coils. Periodically cleaning the refrigerator helps it maintain efficiency, which can save you money each month in utility costs.

Wash and disinfect garbage cans, wastebaskets and toilet brush holders. Let the garden hose do the initial work for you and then use a disinfectant. An added bonus is letting them dry outside in direct sunlight, which helps eliminate bacteria.

Change out those HVAC filters every 60 days. These filters trap dust so you don’t breathe it in. But after a while, they’ve caught all the dust they can hold. Swap them out regularly to keep dust particles off your floors and furniture and out of your lungs. When purchasing new filters, consider their efficiency rating – the higher the rating, the better at removing dirt, mold spores, and pet dander.

Get out the dust rag and clean the tops of your doors, trim and artwork. Tackle anything with a horizontal surface. Chair rails, electrical wall plates, smoke detectors, upper kitchen cabinets – they all collect dirt and dust and often are not part of your normal cleaning routine.

Don’t let the Winter blues get you down. Check off these chores now, and by the time Spring arrives, you’ll have more time to spend outside and enjoy all that Greater Chattanooga has to offer.

By Travis Close, ABR, GREEN, GRI, e-PRO, President

Greater Chattanooga Association of REALTORS®