5 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home

New Year's Resolutions for Your HomeYou may have never thought about setting New Year’s resolutions for your home before. Every year we set goals to quit smoking, lose weight, or save money. But what goals do you set for your home? A lot of the time it feels like the things we want to accomplish around the house just never get finished. This New Year, set some goals for your home that you will actually accomplish. Following are five resolutions to put on your list!

Get Organized

Clearing your house of clutter is probably one of the easiest, least expensive, and most satisfying ways to hit the reset button on your home. Between holidays, hand-me-downs, birthdays, and therapeutic shopping sprees, we all acquire so much throughout the year. If you aren’t periodically throwing out the unused, the broken, or the forgotten, you’ll wind up with a mountain of stuff collecting dust. All of that clutter also contributes to your home looking dated and dirty.

In the new year, resolve to periodically go room by room clearing out anything you don’t use, wear, or absolutely love and donate it to charity. From here on out choose to be picky about the things that you bring into your home. Fill your home with things that bring you joy and positive energy. Once all of your things are streamlined, you’ll be able to breathe a bit easier in your own home.

Step Up Your Security Measures

Your home might be well-kept and beautiful, but is it secure? There are a few things that every home owner should do to ensure they’re home is safe and sound.

Add An Alarm System

Locking your windows and doors should always be your first line of defense. After that, adding an alarm system is a great second. Burglars hate any type of noise, so it might be just the thing you need to scare them off. You can buy inexpensive wireless alarms at almost any home center. They don’t provide the same type of quality as you would get with professionally installed monitored systems. Depending on where you live and the other security measures you already have in place – you may want to splurge on an alarm system.

Reinforce Your Strike Plates

Reinforcing your doors weakest point, the jamb, with a heavy-duty strike plate and extra long nails will give it the added strength needed to withstand a burglar trying to kick your door in. If your door jamb has been installed within the last 10 years then it is probably already reinforced. If not, you’ll need to buy strike plate reinforcing hardware from your local home center.

Install Motion Detectors

Another simple step you can take is adding motion detector lighting to the front and back area of your home. Motion detector are a proven crime deterrent. Standard hard-wired models can cost as little as $15. If running a power supply seems too difficult, you can also purchase ones that run on solar power if you are willing to pay a bit more.

Cut Your Bills and Carbon Footprint

When people think of going green, they often think it’s going to take installing solar panels or driving an electric car to make a difference. But that isn’t so! All it takes is a little common sense. These simple tips will help you curtail your energy usage in the new year.

  • Take your mom’s age old advice and turn off the lights when you leave the house.
  • Set your thermostat to turn off when you’re not home, and to turn on right before you wake up and arrive home.
  • Install LED bulbs and low-flow shower heads and toilets. Even try taking shorter/cooler showers to conserve water!
  • Turn off your power strips and set your home computer to revert to sleep mode when not in use. Unplug your electronics while their not in use. Phantom energy can add as much as 10% to your energy bill each month.
  • Wait for the washing machine to be completely full before running a cycle, then wash your clothes with cold water. Try drying some of your clothes on a clothesline.
  • Give composting a try, your garden will appreciate it! And plant drought-tolerant native plants – they usually need minimal watering.

Create A Cleaning Schedule

Let’s face it, life is busy and sometimes we just don’t have the time or the will to get around to cleaning. If the idea of creating a cleaning schedule sounds overwhelming, just remember that in the end, it will help to relieve more stress than it causes. Because knowing that you have a manageable plan to tackle your cleaning makes the idea of cleaning the whole house a lot less overwhelming in the long run.

Create A Master Task List

Before you can create a schedule of when to clean, you need a list of things that need to be cleaned. Your master task list is going to be completely unique to you and your home. The list for one person living in a one bedroom apartment is going to look a lot different than the list for a family living in a 3-bedroom house. The easiest way to break everything down is to separate tasks by room – living room, kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, etc. From there you can determine how frequently each task needs to be done. Doing the dishes and making your bed are things that you will likely be doing every day. Where as dusting, laundry, and vacuuming only need to be handled once a week. Other things, like deep cleaning your carpets or cleaning your oven really only need to be taken care of once a year.

Ultimately you will need to pick the best plan of action that best fits your lifestyle and cleaning style. Are you the type of person who cleans a little bit each day? Or do you prefer to dedicate one day a week to cleaning the entire house? There is no right way to keep your household tidy. But if you pick a plan and stick to it, suddenly that big, daunting mess in front of you will feel a lot more manageable. And you will keep your home feeling tidy and clean all year long.

Set A Budget

Creating a yearly budget for home improvement and maintenance will help prevent overspending and encourages you to set aside money for major replacements. How old is your roof? What about your furnace or water heater? Do you need to replace any major appliances in the near future? Sit down and make a list of anything that will eventually need to be repaired or replaced. And determine how much you will need to budget for it. Even if your roof won’t need to be replaced for another 15 years, setting a small budget now can help to avoid any expensive surprises.

The US Census Bureau says that average annual maintenance and home improvements expenditures run about $3,300 per household. While leading lending institutions place average yearly maintenance costs at 1% to 3% of your home’s initial price.

Tagged Under: Lifestyle

Mara Calomino


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