Summer is already upon us, so it’s time to get outside and dust that grill! Although cleaning and prepping your home for the new season may be a time commitment, you’ll know it was all worth it when you can relax under the warm sun on your freshly spruced deck.

The following 10 tips will help you keep your home cool, comfortable, and make it this year’s destination spot for summer hangouts.

1. Clean the grill

What’s a summer without everyone’s favorite backyard barbeque? To clean your grill, we suggest you disconnect the gas, disassemble the barbeque from roof to tray (according to manufacturer instructions) and clean with soapy water. Tackle the grill separately with a hard-wire brush – use oven or barbeque cleaner on particularly tough build-up. After cleaning, heat the barbeque, letting it run on high for about 10 minutes, before it cools fully. Finally, wipe the grates with a thin layer of cooking oil. Enjoy some delicious burgers and hot dogs this season!

2. Take inventory on the freezer

Now that you have that grill sparkling, you need a place to store that yummy grub! You know what that means: time to clean out the fridge. In this case, pay special attention to your freezer. Empty your freezer completely, throwing out anything that has gone bad or you haven’t used in the past year. You’ll want that space for lots of popsicles, ice cream, and hamburger meat this summer, so make sure you clean it thoroughly!

3. Check the air conditioning

You’ve taken care of the barbeque situation for your outdoor time this summer, but what about the time you spend indoors? Avoid being miserable on those sweltering summer days by performing a check-up on your air conditioning system. Make sure that cool air is flowing all throughout your home and replace your air conditioner’s filter. Still stuffy? Consider having your central air professionally looked at.

4. Start your ceiling fans

Ceiling fans are a must in the summertime — keep up that air flow! In the colder months, your fans should spin clockwise to distribute warm air back down. Summer requires a switch-up: your fans should be set to rotate counterclockwise for a cooling downdraft. And while you’re up there flipping the switch, it’s not a bad idea to dust a little, too.

5. Say goodbye to winter

You can further prepare for summer by re-decorating the interior of your home. This is easily accomplished with subtle, simple changes, such as replacing any dark colors with cool, light tones or switching out any candles or other winter items with succulents and rock vases. Bonus Tip: Try using a bright color curtains this summer! A yellow or pink would light up the room and make your home seem teeming with daylight and brightness.

6. Take a risk

This summer may be the perfect time to try a larger project. Consider painting a room, building an outdoor deck or fire pit, designing a flower or vegetable garden, or any number of things that’ll make your home seem brand new. Fall in love all over again with your home this summer!

7. Fix up the shed

Speaking of projects, fixing up the shed may be the one on your list. If you’re like me and your shed is hardly touched in the colder months, then summer is the perfect time to fix it up! Bring up your summer sports gear, lawnmower, fertilizer, hose, sprinkler and garden tools to the front, and move those winter tools like the snow skis and shovels to the back so you can be completely organized.

8. Stock up on summer essentials

Everyone loves playing in the sun… but nobody likes a sunburn! Make sure your medicine cabinets are stocked with things like sunscreen, aloe, and insect repellent. Keep a bag packed with picnic blankets and paper/biodegradable dishes for those impromptu outings. And make sure your garage has everything to keep you and your family occupied this summer: lawn golf, badminton, and sprinklers are just a few ideas. These essentials will keep your summer fun 24/7.

9. Clean up the garage

Is it just me who dreads garage sale season? I love the sales, but cleaning the garage can be such a pain! Even if you also would rather be doing anything else than cleaning your garage, remember that you’ll feel so much better when it’s done! Summer is a wonderful time to organize any clutter and get rid of any unwanted items. And what better way to clean out your garage than with a neighborhood garage sale?

10. Wash the windows

Washing the windows doesn’t seem necessarily like a very summer activity, but this is actually the best season for it! Your home will feel even more summer ready with sun-kissed windows that sparkle as the sunlight streams in. Thoroughly wash your windows – inside and out. You’ll need a cloth or brush to tackle some of the larger outdoor debris, an equal parts water-vinegar solution and a squeegee. Rinse and let the sun do the drying!