It’s the New Year and for most people, both your health and your home could use some improvement. So at Aspen Contracting we’ve come up with 8 New Year’s Resolutions for your home that will make it feel new and improved, just like you as you work on being healthier this year.
Get Rid Of Clutter
January is a good time to declutter each room in your home. If you don’t purge things on a regular basis you will have tons of stuff pile up in every drawer, cabinet and closet. Most of it will be stuff you could have thrown away or donated, but decided for some reason it was worth hanging onto. Start with any drawers that seem to be a catchall for mail, letters, kids’ school stuff etc. We all have that one drawer. Get rid of all unnecessary items and use a shoe box for all items you still need or want to hold onto. Label that box with last year’s date and find a place to store it.
Move on to your dresser draws and start by emptying them out. Sort the clothes into 4 piles: keep, donate, trash or sell. Sites like eBay or Craigslist can be great for selling well-conditioned, but unwanted clothing. Get a trash bag for all items that are not in good condition and throw them out.
Categorize all remaining clothes like, socks, long sleeve shirts, t-shirts, pants, shorts, etc. Put them in piles and neatly fold them to fit back inside the drawers. The key to doing this is to save space. If you are unsure how, here is a great video on how to fold your clothes to save space.
Create a Safe House
Your house is beautiful, but is it safe? A new year is a great time to check the things in your home that are supposed to keep you safe. Start by changing the batteries to all your smoke detectors. Check your house for Radon exposure. This gas is very dangerous and causes yearly lung cancer deaths from radioactive particles it traps in your lungs as you breathe. Carbon monoxide is also dangerous and can go undetected. This is important to your family’s safety and needs to be checked. Install carbon monoxide detectors around your home.
Clean Home Routine
Daily: Every night make sure all the dirty dishes go in the dishwasher – no excuses! Make this a habit. No one wants to wake up to a sink full of dirty dishes. All dirty clothes should go in the hamper, not on the floor. This will be a hard one for the kids, but get them in a routine of locating their hamper when they take clothes off. All jackets or clean clothes are hung in the closet. Bring everything back to its assigned place.
Weekly: Clean your entire house weekly. That’s right weekly!!! Depending on the size of your home, this is not an impossible task. Try to keep basic cleaning materials in every part of the home: bathroom, kitchen and laundry room. This will save you time and effort. If you have children, decide what chores they are good at or like to do and have those kids in charge of that chore for the house. Break the duties up between dusting, vacuuming, making beds, cleaning the bathroom, cleaning the kitchen and taking out the trash. By splitting the work you can get it done in an hour or two.
Make sure you have seasonal maintenance checks on all your systems and appliances. Winter is a good time to make sure all smoke alarms are functioning properly. Spring is a good time to check your roof for leaks and clean your air conditioner coils. Summer is a good time to do a thorough cleaning of your kitchen appliances. In the fall check your hot water heater for leaks and drain all of your outside water hoses.
Organize Kitchen Cabinets and Drawers
Get your kitchen in order by organizing your cabinets. Create a system that will make your life easier and your cabinets less messy. One way to begin the organization process is to put shelf risers in your cabinets. This allows you to double your cabinet space in no time. You can also help organize the kitchen by using dividers to organize the kitchen drawers.
Become Energy Efficient
One way to improve the health of your home and shrink the overall carbon footprint is to cut down on energy consumption. Cutting the amount of energy your family uses will also save money and extend the lifespan of vital things in your home. See if you can install LED light bulbs anywhere you are using bulbs. LED light bulbs use 75% energy and last 35 to 50 times longer than incandescent bulbs. You can also trim energy use by sealing and insulating your duct work. This increases the efficiency of your heating and cooling system by almost 20%.
Check your Gutters
It’s a no brainer, but the cleaner your gutters are, the better they will function. After making sure the gutters are clean, check to see if the downspouts are all draining away from the foundation. This is key to avoid major and expensive home repairs. Take a walk around the house and check your gutters. If you are unsure what to do you can call and Aspen Contracting to come and inspect your gutters for you to make sure they are in top condition.
You’re All Set
Now you have a start to get your house in order this New Year. Even if you can’t get all of them done, knocking a few things off this list won’t be too hard and your home and family will thank you for it.