RehabwithRamonWe don’t have to tell you how cold it is in Milwaukee in January, but lets keep the cold where it belongs: outside! ACTS rehab specialist Ramon has a few tips for how to keep your home warm in the winter. The best news? These weatherization tips all cost less than $20.

1) Check all of your weather stripping: If you look closely at your exterior doors, you will notice foam rubber strips at the base, along the sides and at the tops. This stripping should be installed in all cracks. The foam works to keep cold air and frost out when your door is shut. Don’t see any weather stripping? You may be susceptible to cold creeping in. CLICK HERE for a free guide on how to install weather stripping around your doors and windows. You can purchase supplies for weather stripping at most hardware stores, and it’s an easy fix.

2) Caulk Drafty Windows: Do you feel a cold draft coming in around the edges of your windows? Similar to weather stripping, the cracks around windows are a great place for winter to come in for an unwelcome visit. A simple tube of silicon caulk, and a caulk gun can be purchased at most hardware stores for less than $20. Apply  the caulk to the cracks of your windows to keep the cold out. Be careful to use the right caulk, and don’t caulk the windows shut. CLICK HERE for a great guide on selecting caulk and caulking cracks.

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3) Check your basement and attic: Your house loses a lot of its heat through the basement and the attic. Since these areas are less populated, there is less opportunity for people to realize how cold it truly is. Pick up some foam sealer. Spray the foam into cracks in your attic, the edges of your roof, cracks in your foundation and gaps in unfinished basement walls. Foam sealer does expand, so be carefully and use sparingly! Also check your foundation from the outside. If it is missing grout, be sure to re-grout or apply foam sealer to cracks. Water and air can freeze and invade foundation cracks. CLICK HERE to watch a video on where and how to use foam sealer.

4) Check your dryer vents: Do you have a washer and dryer in your home? If yes, dryer vents can often go overlooked. Check to see if your dryer vent can be opened and closed. If not, this can be a significant source of heat loss. If your dryer vent is stuck open, either because it is old or dusty, you should clean it, fix it or replace it.

5) Install window plastic: Can’t afford state-of-the art energy-efficient windows? Like the look of your beautiful old windows but are noticing a draft? Most local hardware stores carry window plastic. This is installed with a special sealer, and usually heated up and straightened out using a standard hair dryer. Be sure to purchase the right kind of plastic and follow the instructions carefully. CHECK OUT this video for how to properly install plastic.

We hope these tips will help keep you and your family warm this winter! Thanks for reading.


Acts Housing’s mission is to promote affordable home ownership that fosters a low-income family’s ability to be self-empowered, thereby reducing community blight, neighborhood deterioration, and poverty. Acts’ strategy is to generate home ownership opportunities for inner-city residents within a targeted neighborhood so that an entire community can be transformed and sustained. Acts’ team provides home buying services throughout the city of Milwaukee.
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