Preparing your home for winter

The winter nights are drawing in and the festive season is almost upon us, so there couldn’t be a better time to prepare your home for the cold weather to come. But don’t limit yourself only to practical household jobs! This is also the perfect opportunity to indulge your senses and cosy up in your warm, glowing home to banish the chill and the dark outside.

Firstly of course, you’ll need to take care of a few essential things…

• It’s always a good idea to know where your stopcock is, just in case of burst pipes due to extreme cold. Insulating your pipes with jackets will minimise the risk of this happening – these are fairly inexpensive and can be found at most good hardware shops. Scottish Water have also created this useful video on protecting your pipes.
Clearing your gutters now will also help with drainage and minimise the risk of burst pipes.
Defrost your freezer all ready for your stock of Christmas food! Take care of course to move any electrical appliances from around the freezer area while you do so.
• Secure your outside space and anything loose that could be damaged by wind, such as trampolines, gazebos or barbecue equipment.
Bring in vulnerable container plants that won’t like being exposed to frost – if you’re unsure which of your plants will want to spend the winter indoors, this handy guide has some great comprehensive advice.

Be prepared for power cuts – make sure you know where your torches are, ensure their batteries are charged, and you could even invest in some portable battery-powered lights which are ready to go at a moment’s notice, such as this robust portable camping lantern.

Then once your home is fully prepared, you can turn your mind to some cosier and more life-enhancing things – this is the time of year to add some Coorie! This evocative Scottish “hug” of a word means to derive comfort, wellbeing and energy from both wild landscapes and convivial interiors.

Make your own Christmas wreath! Take a look at this guide from Martha Stewart.
• Purchase some indulgent fluffy socks and furry throws for cosying up at home after a bracing walk in the park!
• Pick out scented candles or reed diffusers to add some festive scents to your home such as spice and frankincense, for an instant welcome the moment you step in your front door.
• Find out where your nearest Christmas market is, for a unique selection of hand-crafted and locally-sourced items for your home, kitchen and garden

For Mactaggart & Mickel customers, information about assistance available during the festive season can be found on our website at