It’s the time of year to come up with New Year’s resolutions once again. We can look back at our shortcomings and mistakes from the past year and embrace the chance to do better in the coming year. Though we typically make resolutions about improving ourselves, with the usual emphasis on health and well being, it’s good to tend to the maintenance of our homes as well. Our homes are our biggest investment and a place where we spend much of our time.
Consider the following home-centered New Year’s resolutions for the coming year:
- Go green – We can trim our energy bills and our carbon footprint by cutting our energy usage at home. We can replace incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient alternatives, turn off the lights in rooms that are not in use, or lower the thermostat setting at night. We can also switch to drought-tolerant landscaping for less watering.
- Safety-proof – Potential fire risks or health hazards must be eliminated. We can check for the presence of radon, a colorless and odorless gas that causes lung cancer. A radon detection test kit costs only $20 at the local hardware store. A carbon monoxide detector, in addition to smoke detectors, should be installed in the different rooms of the house.
- Remove clutter – Having a clean and organized home will make everybody feel better. Get rid of the clutter that inevitably accumulates in the space of a year. Go room-by-room, tidying up and removing things that are no longer needed. A good rule of thumb is that if you haven’t used items in the past 12 months, you are probably fine without them. Get rid of unwanted items by holding a yard sale or giving them to charitable organizations.
Work toward a safe, efficient, and streamlined home to put you in the right frame of mind for 2017.