Now that the holiday season is behind us, most will be looking forward to the year ahead. And to express our best hopes and plans, a few New Year's Resolutions are in order.
This year, why make some resolutions for around your home?
After all, a house is not just a place where you spend a lot of your time—it's also a shelter, an investment, and a home.
With that in mind, here are some New Year's Resolutions you can do to keep your home comfortable, efficient, and looking good. And these aren't big, daunting, or expensive renovations either—just a few ounces of prevention, a bit of organization, and a good habit or two.
The key to long term maintenance is catching problems before they arise, which brings us to the first resolution: Look at your house sometimes.
Simple isn't it? Well, there's a little more to it...
Give your home more than just a quick glance, give it a proper inspection.
Look at the exterior of your home from the sidewalk, then get up close to look at it from the sides and back. You should also poke around the basement, shine a flashlight into the crawl spaces, and explore the attic space (if you have one).
What exactly are you looking for?
Well, try to notice any chipped paint, shingles out of place, warped surfaces, leaks—that sort of thing. Bonus points if you do this when its raining.
If you don't feel confident in evaluating what you're seeing, call on a family friend or expert to have a look.
Fresh eyes and an honest opinion could save you a lot of money and stress in the long run.
Up Your Safety Game
Your home is a shelter—it keeps you safe. But only if you keep up with maintenance and repairs.
If not, your home can present a few hazards of its own.
So, begin the year with a quick check of your home's safety features, then set up a reminder to check these again in about six months or so. Here's what should be on the list:
Smoke/gas detectors - Check the batteries, use the "test" buttons.
Fire extinguishers - Check the pressure gauge. Also: Do you know what type of fire your extinguisher is suited for? Check!
Electrical - Wires looking good? Nothing warm to the touch? If you're experiencing trips or flickers, call an electrician.
Garage Doors - Test the auto-reverse feature. Block the door with something - it should reverse automatically in a few seconds.
This one makes sense for a whole host of reasons . Not only will a move towards greater efficiency save you money, it’ll also attract future buyers who are looking for energy efficient homes.
Indoors, a few dollars worth of weatherstrip-tape or a new door seal can prevent drafts, saving energy and providing a few extra degrees of comfort.
But, with summer on the way, you should probably focus your attention on air conditioners and ceiling fans. Clear out the dust and replace filters to ensure these are working at their best.
Living green is extremely important in Santa Cruz. We see first hand what’s happening to our oceans, so this New Year’s, be more eco-friendly!
You can start in your own home by planting a garden. Santa Cruz weather makes it extremely easy to grow vegetables of all kinds!
To become a bit more green, try to use less energy this year. Make sure to turn off the lights when you leave a room and shut off the T.V. when you’re done watching. Small things like these help the environment.
Happy New Year to Your Home
Keeping a home in good shape is vital—we all know this, but it’s sometimes so hard to keep up with everything that needs to be done. Well, there are two big reasons...
First, home upgrades and repairs tend to be a little expensive, so we often just avoid thinking about them.
And second, our homes are so close to us that sometimes we don't even see what needs to be done.
Luckily, it's never been easier to keep track and remind yourself of scheduled tasks. Set up a calendar or some kind of electronic reminder system. Or go the low-tech route and get a mini whiteboard set up on your fridge.
Break down your resolutions into mini-tasks you can do at the end of the day or on the weekends. Keep it simple! For example, to keep with your energy efficiency resolution, just remind yourself to water the garden later in the afternoon. Easy!
If you’re thinking that this year is the year to sell your home, get in touch with our team and we’ll be happy to help you make the judgement call when it comes to your home maintenance, and to help you get your home into tip-top selling condition.