It’s now officially spring, and that means it’s time to do some deep cleaning around your house.

As warmer weather creeps back into your life, be ready to scrub away the remnants of sidewalk salt left behind from winter, throw away items you don’t need and assess what needs repair in your home.

“It’s always good to do a really thorough walk-around of the house and just check everything,” says Carrie Bonney, director of public relations for Farmers Insurance.

Common spring weather patterns – from end-of-winter deep freezes to frequent rain storms, high winds, hail and tornadoes – can cause significant damage to your home. Farmers Insurance compiled historic data for insurance claims from homeowners in different parts of the country and found 60 percent of claims in the south central U.S. were related to hail between March and May. During the same period, the Southwest saw 41 percent of claims relating to water damage, while New England homeowners filed the most claims (32 percent) caused by ice dams and other snow or ice damage.

As you shift into spring cleaning mode, ensure your home is ready to take on the next round of difficult weather conditions. But don’t stop at the exterior; maintain appliancesand internal systems to get your home through spring, as well as summer and next fall.

The biggest question on many homeowners’ minds when it comes to routine maintenance and repairs is whether to call a professional – and all too often that question serves as an excuse to put off maintenance altogether.