January is an excellent time for new beginnings. Start the year off right by protecting your home from cold weather, clearing out clutter, and planning out projects for the year ahead. Check out our essential winter project list below. By implementing a few of these ideas, you'll be far ahead by the time spring cleaning comes around. Hopefully, you'll be so far ahead that you'll be able to get outside and enjoy the nice weather that spring is sure to bring!
1. Protect your pipes from freezing. Why is this so important? Because frozen pipes will likely burst, and that can lead to painful headaches and very expensive repairs. Make sure all exposed outdoor pipes are securely insulated. If you're planning on being away from home, have a friend or neighbor check in from time to time, and make sure they run the water for a bit. Also, if you haven't already done so, be sure that you know where your home's water shut-off valve is so that if a pipe does burst, you can quickly shut it off.
2. Check all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. With the risk that additional heater use and wood fires bring, now is a good time to go through and check all of your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Carefully test each device and replace the batteries immediately if needed.
3. Take preventative measures against ice dams. Ice dams are spots of accumulated ice that build up around your roof line, and can cause leaks when the backed up snow and ice behind begins to melt. You can avoid this by using a roof rake to periodically remove all snow. If you notice an ice dam beginning to form, be sure to break it up to avoid any damage. Ice dams are an indication of heat loss through your roof from either improper ventilation, inadequate insulation, or a combination of both. If excessive ice dams are an issue in your home, feel free to contact Michael's Homes for a no-cost assessment of the causes of your home's heat loss.
4. Clean out your pantry, refrigerator, & pantry. Who says you have to wait until the spring for a good cleaning? The post-holiday time is actually an ideal time to clean out food areas. Remove everything, wipe down and disinfect the shelves, throw out stale or expired foods, and revive your food supply. This is a great time of the year to do this, especially if you've made any health resolutions for the new year!
5. Clear clutter in your wardrobe and elsewhere around your home. Give your home and wardrobe a fresh start for the new year. Donate old clothes and items around the house that you no longer use. Get rid of "dust collectors" that no longer serve a useful purpose in your life. If the thought of decluttering your entire home at once is a bit overwhelming, start with one area at a time. Little steps will get you far.
6. Revitalize playrooms. If you have children, then this step is for you. Since so much of the winter is spent indoors, by the time January rolls around, your kids are starting to get bored with their daily routine. This is a great time to revitalize the playroom. Instead of television programs and electronic games, why not give them some new options for hands-on and creative play? There are so many simple, and inexpensive ways to liven up the playroom. Some options they might love are a chalkboard, tumbling mat, or a craft area. Simply painting one wall with chalkboard paint can turn a boring room into a kid's dream room.
7. Plan your next big home project. Whether you're thinking of remodeling the bathroom or kitchen, painting the exterior, or adding a new addition; take the next step on your upcoming home project. Figure out what exciting changes are in store for this year, and get in touch with the staff at Michael's Homes today to turn this dream into a reality. You'll be amazed at how simple and easy the process is!