Turn a snow day into a go day. People love to wait until spring and summer to start home improvement projects, but there’s actually a lot you can accomplish in the winter. Sure, maybe they’re not the most fun of tasks, but would you rather tackle your home improvement to-do list when it’s cold and wet outside or on a gorgeous sunny day when the grill is just waiting to be fired up? That’s what we thought.
Here are nine easy projects you can accomplish this winter either on your own, or with the help of a Thumbtack pro.
Paint Your Walls
You’re going to be stuck inside for most of the winter, so why not look at walls that wow? Whether you change the color, add a bold feature wall, use painter’s tape to create a pattern, or add wallpaper, this is one of the easiest ways to get a new look in a tired space.
Light Things Up
During dark winter months, lighting becomes even more important. Plus, updating your lighting can completely change the vibe of a room and is a great way to save on energy bills. Lighting doesn’t just have to illuminate living spaces; it can also highlight artwork or add an interesting design element that changes the way a room looks. Consider a chandelier in an unusual space like a bathroom, walk-in closet, or kitchen, pendant lights over a kitchen island, or adding practical lighting inside drawers, cabinets, or the shower.
Update the Mudroom
Sure, the mudroom’s is first-and-foremost a practical place to take off muddy or snow-soaked boots, hang soaked raincoat and jackets, store the dog’s leash, and act as a catchall for book bags and equipment. But just because something’s practical doesn’t mean it can’t also be pretty. Use this opportunity to really figure out what purpose your mudroom serves and redesign it so it works for your family. Get matching baskets and open shelves for storage. Mount gorgeous hooks in as many spaces as possible. Add a bench with storage where people can sit when removing shoes. Whatever you decide, keep organization front of mind, but make sure style is right behind it because you want to feel good every time you come and go.
Organize Your Drawers and Closets
In theory, you should try to declutter every six months or at least every year, which means it’s time to stop putting it off. A few tips for getting organized. 1.) Clear out the entire space and wipe it down so you’re starting with a totally clean area. 2.) Have a place you’re going to donate things in mind so that it’s easier to let go of belongings you no longer use or need. 3.) Tackle one space at a time so you’re not overwhelmed. 4.) Avoid putting things back in a space if they don’t belong there. 5.) Keep things you use regularly within reach; place extras on higher shelves.
Put in a Programmable Thermostat
Installing a programmable thermostat is a pretty simple DIY project and once it’s set, it knows exactly when to pump more heat into your house (in the morning and evening) and when to let things cool down a bit (like when you’re at work). Nowadays there are even models that will learn your heating habits as you go, let you control everything from your tablet, or even send you alerts if they sense something’s wrong with the heating. Either way, it’s a great way to save on energy bills and to make sure your toasty warm all winter long.
Winterize Your House
Just because snow may already have fallen doesn’t mean you can’t bring someone in to winterize your house. You may want to call an HVAC professional to inspect your furnace or clean your heating ducts; get trees trimmed to avoid branches breaking due to snow, ice, and wine; check your insulation and wrap your pipes; get your chimney inspected and cleaned; clean your gutters; or reverse the direction of your ceiling fans so that they’re pushing hot air down to delay it from escaping the house.
Install Energy Efficient Windows
If you live in a cold climate, windows can be one of the biggest causes of heat loss, but you’ll want to ask a professional which type of window to install since you’ll also want to factor in how hot it gets in the summer. Even if you don’t want to replace your windows entirely, check the frames for leaks and caulk both sides of the trim to prevent air from getting in (and heat from getting out).
Decorate Your Doors
We often overlook our interior doors even though they can add a lot of impact to a room. Even better: refurbishing a door doesn’t take a lot of work. A bold color can add an unexpected splash of color in an otherwise neutral space while distressing a door can give a room a rustic vibe. You can also change our knobs and hinges or add molding for elegant dimension.
Do Those Repairs and Projects You’ve Been Putting Off
Whether it’s fixing cracked tile, replacing leaky faucets, tightening loose hinges, framing and hanging photos, buying new towels or bedding… Now is the time to make your list and then get to work so you can start crossing things off. Your Netflix queue will be there for you when you finish. Promise.
Ready to get started? Hire a Thumbtack pro to help.