The most popular time for home improvement projects is the spring and summer. After all, who wants to paint their house or put on a new roof when snow is falling? That doesn’t mean, however, that there aren’t many projects you can tackle in the winter. In fact, you can even save money by undertaking jobs in the off season.
Since business slows down in the colder weather, contractors and home and garden stores often have specials this time of year. Of course, you don’t need to spend a ton of money to make your home look (and work!) better.
Many home improvement projects can be done by a homeowner with a do-it-yourself spirit and a small budget. While some jobs are best left for the warmer months, many jobs are well suited for working indoors, and don’t require you to be outside in the elements, thus can be pursued in the winter.
For example, you may want to paint the inside of your house. Modern paints are not as toxic as they once were, and they do not give off fumes as strong as in years past. You can beat the lines at the hardware store and rent the equipment you need to make indoor painting painless. Power sprayers are available for rent or borrow in every city and turning up the heat can help the paint dry more quickly.
If you can handle your own carpeting, installing a new color can be done during the winter without the aid of a carpeting crew. Carpeting prices may also be cheaper during the winter.
There are many indoor maintenance projects you might want to consider now too.
Burst pipes can cost a fortune, and the old standby of letting water drip slowly doesn’t always work. Installing heat tape on your pipes is easy to do yourself, and is cheaper than having a plumber do. The tape, which is actually a cord more often than not, wraps around exposed pipes that may freeze. You plug it into a standard outlet and it warms up the pipes, preventing them from freezing. Heat tape must be plugged into an outlet with a ground (3-plug) to work properly.
Changing light fixtures can obviously be performed indoors and provides an excellent opportunity to add higher efficiency lights and seals. Installing lights and fans is a fairly simple process and fans can be purchased on line, eliminating the need to drag them home through the snow. Simply put in the order, and they will be delivered to your doorstep.
Organization is a different type of maintenance that you can undertake in the colder months. Let’s face it: everyone can think of some area of their home that needs to be reorganized. Instead of feeling cooped-up inside, use the time to clean out closets and install shelving units or storage cabinets. Old boxes and drawers can be opened and cleaned out. Many areas have organizations that would be happy to take old coats and clothes from you during the winter as well.
As you can see, there are many ways to improve the look and functionality if your home this winter. As always, the hard part is getting off the couch to do it…