Puerto Vallarta, Mexico - Many of the Banderas Bay area's snowbirds and part-time residents will soon be packing up and heading 'up North' before the arrival of Puerto Vallarta's hot and humid summer season.
As the old saying goes, "The best time to fix the roof is before it starts raining" - so here's a list of things to do before leaving your Puerto Vallarta home or condominium to ensure that it will remain sound and secure while you are away.
• Start eating leftovers and cleaning out the refrigerator. Once your fridge is empty, it is best to moderate the temperature and leave it running rather than unplugging it.
• Remove perishable items from cabinets, and store non-perishables like salt, pepper, and spices in sealable plastic bags or containers.
• Unplug all non-essential electrical devices, including TVs, stereos, computers, etc. and remove the phone jack from the wall if you have a modem.
• Internet, cable television and satellite services can be suspended while you are away, saving a bit of money. Call your cable operator or Internet provider for details.
• Turn off your hot water heater and the cooking stove's gas supply.
• Turn off your hot water heater and the water supply to toilets and sinks.
• Have someone stop by every once in a while to air out the house, water the plants, pay your bills, schedule and supervise any maintenance or repairs, and keep you informed.
There are very few homes in the Banderas Bay region that do not require preparations for Puerto Vallarta's rainy season, so make sure that your home is weather proof by:
• Sealing any gaps around doors and window frames, patching any small cracks in the walls or ceilings to prevent leaks.
• Securing all patio furniture, umbrellas, and small potted plants, or bring them indoors to keep them from 'blowing away' during storms.
• Making sure that your roof is cleared of trash, leaves, and dead branches. If your roof has drains or gutters, make sure they are clear.If you take these precautions before you head up North, you will (hopefully) find your Puerto Vallarta home or condominium as you left it upon your return next Winter. Remember, the smallest things can cause the biggest problems, so taking the time to Summer proof your Winter home will be worth the extra effort.