2014 is here and most people are probably busy with their New Year’s resolutions. While working towards your own personal goals, here are some popular resolutions turned inside out for your Lexington home. 2014 is the year to start getting creative and taking care of your home!
1. Lose Weight = Reduce Energy Costs
As the price of utilities continues to rise, homeowners get hit hard in the pocketbook. It may be winter when the new year emerges, but soon enough warmer weather arrives, and those Lexington summers can cost a pretty penny in air conditioning.
Homeowners can cut their energy use by checking their HVAC ducks for leaks and sealing them. This might be a job you want to hire out to a handyman, but if you want to tackle it yourself, make sure you use metal-backed tape to seal off those holes, connections, and seams.
You can also reduce heat, and thus the amount air conditioning required, by planting shady trees around your house and using sun-blocking window shades. Get a programmable thermostat that automatically reduces the amount of energy expended when you are out of the house.
2. Quit Smoking = Improve Air Quality
Homeowners can suffer allergies and skin conditions as a result of impure air within the home. Keep your HVAC filters changed regularly, preferably monthly. Make use of kitchen, laundry, and bathroom vents and fans. Consider an air purifier to help clear up the air as well.
3. Get Out of Debt = Budget for Home Maintenance
Work toward your ultimate goal of paying off your mortgage by avoiding over expenditures. Research all home improvements carefully and secure multiple quotes from contractors to make sure you are getting the best price. Set aside about $3,000 to $4,000 a year for minor home improvements and unforeseeable repairs. When tackling larger projects, make sure you can recoup all or most of your costs when you finally sell your home. Kitchen and bathroom improvements are the ones most likely to increase the resale value of your house.
4. Get Organized = De-Clutter Your Home
An organized home creates a sense of a larger living space and makes it easier for homeowners to relax. Commit to devoting just ten to fifteen minutes a day to decluttering. Bag up and donate clothes the kids have outgrown or that you never wear to free up closet space. Purchase space savers such as shoe racks, closet organizers, and kitchen drawer organizers. Take advantage of storage space by recombining boxes and reducing the total number of boxes you have in your storage closet, garage, or under the stairs.
5. Volunteer = Support Your Community
A home is only as valuable as the community that surrounds it. You can have the prettiest house on the block, but it won’t matter if your neighborhood is run-down or impersonal. Get involved in community beautification projects on common lands. Volunteer to help an older neighbor who can’t maintain his lawn. Consider participating in or, if necessary, organizing a neighborhood watch program to ensure community safety.
Start the New Year with Your Home Resolutions
There are hundreds of New Year’s resolutions a homeowner can make. Sometimes, the responsibility of home ownership can feel overwhelming. Start with these five essential goals, and you’ll be on your way to a cleaner, more efficient, happier home.