The harsh winters in Minnesota can cause damage to a home with storms, ice, and downed limbs. Fortunately, houses are designed to withstand most typical weather in the area, but it is important to remember the design also calls for ongoing maintenance. It's usually a good idea to talk with a contractor in the spring and the home inspected for any damage which may have occurred so it can be repaired before it becomes worse.
Ice Damage to Gutters
Ice dams can form during a long storm in exceptionally cold weather even if your gutters are properly aligned for efficient drainage. If you had trouble with recurring ice dams over the winter, your gutters are likely not in perfect shape as standing water is usually what causes the problem. Further, once dams form the added weight can make the gutter sag, which in turn disrupts the drainage cycle. It isn't a big job to straighten the gutters back out, and may not seem very important to the homeowner, but it needs to be done prevent leaks from forming due to the excess weight.
Window Drafts You've Noticed
If you're like most people, you won't notice a window draft during the summer but you'll realize it every time you walk by the window in the winter. Window drafts are a top reason for higher than necessary heating and cooling bills and needs to be addressed. In some cases a window draft can be repaired, but often if the window is old enough to have formed a draft it's likely time to consider new windows for cosmetic reasons or especially if you have problems opening and closing the windows securely.
Roof Inspections and Maintenance
Annual roof inspections are always a good idea so you can fix a potential problem before it becomes a serious issue in the form of a water leak. As long as a roof contractor is there, he may as well go up on the roof and conduct an inspection. He'll be able to catch any missing shingles or compromised chimney and pipe sealant before you have water coming in through the attic.