6. Drink less (curb home water use)
Our houses are thirsty. The average household uses about 400 gallons of water each day, or almost $700 per year in water and sewer costs.
Here are some proven ways of ensuring water usage is curtailed to a certain degree, hence, saving you some money in the long run. These are my favorites but Volusia.org has a list of 25 ways to save water.
- Check your pipes, faucets, and toilet bowl for leaks and repair them immediately
- Take shorter showers
- Install water-saving showerheads or flow restrictors
- Turn off the water while brushing your teeth and/or shaving
- Use your automatic dishwasher for full loads only
- Use your automatic washing machine only for full loads only
- If you wash dishes by hand, don’t leave the water running for rinsing
- Water your lawn only when it needs it
- Don’t run the hose while washing your car
7. Spend more time with family (share home improvement projects)
Seems like the Covid-19 pandemic has forced us into mastering the art of spending quality time with our families. This act of spending time together could be extended to implementing these fun-to-do projects to make every minute count:
- Create a garden and plant vegetables and flowers.
- Make a home emergency preparedness kit. Make a scavenger hunt of gathering up all the necessary supplies, such as flashlights, toilet paper, and duct tape, and assemble your kit during an evening together. It’s a good, non-scary way to teach small children about what to do if there’s an emergency.
- Engage the family in painting one or two rooms together. Consider giving your kitchen a much-needed facelift
- Create artwork and hang them in the family room
Remember, safety first in all you do; and a family that works together stays together.
8. Get fit (exercise your DIY skills)
Looking to trim a little of the old spare tire? Routine home maintenance and repair is a double win — you’ll burn calories while keeping your house in tip-top shape. Try these essential fix-ups and improvements from CalorieLab:
- Building a fence: 340 calories per hour
- Caulking windows and doors: 280 calories per hour
- Cleaning rain gutters: 272 calories per hour
- Installing ceramic tile: 238 calories per hour
- Interior painting: 136 calories per hour
- Chopping firewood: 340 calories per hour
- Mowing the lawn: 306 calories per hour
- Planting shrubs: 238 calories per hour
- General gardening: 204 calories per hour
9. Make it safe and sound
Your home may be beautiful, but is it safe? There are a few things that every homeowner should do to ensure that they’re not living with a potential health hazard or fire risk:
- Check your house for radon. This colorless, odorless gas causes about 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year from the radioactive particles it traps in your lungs as you breathe, according to the S. Environmental Protection Agency. One in every fifteen homes has elevated levels. And with test kits costing as little as $20 at your local hardware store, there’s no reason not to get right on that.
- Install a carbon monoxide detector on every bedroom floor in addition to fire detectors. If a chimney flue or furnace vent gets blocked or leaks, carbon monoxide could back up in your house and kill you. Like a radon test, this is a small investment — $40 or more — for such an important safeguard.
- Watch out for dryer lint. We know you clean the little trap inside the door, but most people neglect to clean the vents and ducts behind the dryer. Lint may seem innocent, but it’s highly combustible, according to the U.S. Fire Administration, accounting for more than 15,000 building fires a year.
10. Be less stressed (use maintenance-free materials)
If you want less to worry about, install low-maintenance materials and products designed for durability and long, trouble-free service.
- Fiber-cement siding lasts for 50 years or more. It’s weather-proof and resists dents, fire, insects, and rot. It’s exceptionally stable, even with changes in humidity, so that paint jobs last longer than on wood and wood-fiber siding products.
- LED bulbs last a phenomenal 20,000 to 50,000 hours between charges, or about 18 to 46 years when used for 3 hours each day. Although the initial cost is high (about $40 per bulb), LED bulbs pay for themselves in energy savings in about 10 years.
- Classic ceramic tile comes in many colors and textures, but at its heart, it’s incredibly tough, stain-resistant, and impervious to moisture. You can count on ceramic tile’s good looks to last for decades on floors and walls without needing repair or replacement.
This New Year’s Resolution for your home was curated by Fola Ajisafe and credits are given to: