5 Ways to Receive Your Home Ready for the New Year

5 Ways to Receive Your Home Ready for the New Year

Everybody has that list. They can get pushed to the back of your mind or shoved into your junk drawer but that list is still there. Things like cleaning the gutters, adding weatherstripping to the windows and getting the carpets cleaned are often on those lists. Those chores aren’t fun, but they need to be carried out. What better time to handle these things than the brand new calendar year? Do more than get your home organized for 2012 — follow these five steps to prepare your house for a brand new year.

Eggleston Farkas Architects

1. Get your house ready for rough weather. December might be over, but there is still lots of winter weather ahead. Whether you live in sunny Florida or chilly Minnesota, you wish to be sure that you’re ready for anything Mother Nature might throw at you. Clean gutters out completely, and reattach any loose bits and pieces. Weatherstrip exterior doors and windows to prevent water leakage, and to keep cold air from leaking in. Buy and install surge protectors to keep your appliances sound and safe during thunderstorms.

Atypical Type A

2. Be ready for emergencies. Get your first-aid kit and home disaster kit in order. Make sure you and your family are ready for any mishap — big or small. Rather than worrying about what the future might bring, prepare it!

The American Red Cross has a great guide about what you need to include in basic disaster kits, however normally, include enough drinking water to every family member (including pets) for a few days, an excess source of any special medications, blankets, warm clothes, canned food and a can opener, a transistor radio, a flashlight, spare batteries and cash.

3. Check on your own fever and air-quality devices. When you have not already, install a programmable thermostat in your house. It is a very simple tool which can help cut down on cooling and heating costs. If you’ve already been using a humidifier in your house during the winter, be sure that you wash it regularly as it could become a breeding ground for bacteria. Check the operator’s manual for information about which parts will need to be cleaned, and the way.

Feldman Architecture, Inc..

Maintaining your furnace can help it run better. During the colder months when you are using heat regularly, you should check your furnace monthly and replace/clean filters as required. An excellent, clean filter may also improve the air quality in your house by removing dust and pollen.

Sarah Susanka, FAIA

4. Check smoke and CO alarms.

Make sure that your family is safe from all potential risks by analyzing your smoke and CO alarms, and replacing batteries. Examine the manufacturing date on every one of your alerts.

According to Consumer Reports, smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years, and CO alarms should be replaced every five. Make sure that there’s a CO alarm on every level of your house, and smoke alarms in every bedroom and hallway and the loft and cellar.

Susan Diana Harris Interior Design

5. Lower your household budget.

Go greener to save money on your monthly bills. Nothing crazy is essential — try doing a simple home energy audit (available on the Department of Energy’s site ) to find which parts of your house require the most attention.

Turn the lights off every time you leave a space. Try putting a small note by each the light switches in your home to help you remember.

Switch off heat and air conditioning when you leave the home, then turn them down or off through the night.

Put up thick curtains for insulation in summer time and winter. Install CFL or LED bulbs. Switch off power strips when gadgets aren’t in use.

The Furniture Guild

Try composting — it is great when you have a backyard, and maintaining biodegradable food scraps in 1 place often means that you’ll need to take out smelly trash not as often, so you’re going to save yourself trash bags.

Purchase store-brand cleaning products instead of name brands, and use coupons whenever possible.Invest in all-purpose cleansers, and reusable dishcloths and mops.
After all is said and done, you can put some of the money you are saving to a fund for a new residence project that you’ve been wanting to handle for a while!

Tell us: What repairs do you wish to do around the home this season?

More: Get Prepared for Winter’s Wonderful Ways
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