Many Americans make New Year’s resolutions; unfortunately, most of those resolutions are never kept. In fact, according to one U.S. News report, 80 percent of resolutions never survive past February! Resolutions require, well, resolve—and we know those January 1 goals can be difficult to sustain.
Aside from the range of those personal resolutions you might make, we would like to offer some additional resolution ideas to follow in 2018: home maintenance endeavors. Every year, well-meaning homeowners swear they will do a better job of upkeep and upgrades. Yet, the weeks and months pass by while all those projects are languishing, projects they had hoped to complete—or even start. Before you know it, you are ringing in 2019 and swearing to change.
These six New Year’s resolutions aren’t particularly difficult or involved, but if you follow them, most likely you will be happier with the state of your home at the end of the year.
1. Look at Your Roof Every Season
When we say “look at your roof,” we don’t mean "occasionally glance up when you pull into the driveway." Rather, devote some time to carefully examine the top of your home. This may be possible from the ground level, or you may want to (carefully) climb a ladder to get a better view. Look for cracked or missing shingles, gutter problems, debris, nests, and other things that could be amiss with your roof. Each season brings unique threats to your roof, so assessing your roof every three months ensures you're not waiting too long to catch a problem. If you do suspect a problem, call a trusted contractor for a professional inspection.
2. Review Your Homeowner’s Insurance
This resolution won’t take long; review your homeowner’s insurance to see the details of which items are covered or not covered, who to call for a claim, how much of a deductible to pay, and so on. Too often, after some sort of disaster strikes a home, the homeowner scrambles to determine if he or she is covered. Review your policy now to eliminate surprises, before that thunderstorm blows shingles off your roof.
3. Use Caution with Riskier Home Tasks
As you work on your home resolutions, take extreme caution with any task that is risky—both to yourself and your home. Replacing a toilet on your own might save money, but getting it done wrong might lead to a watery disaster. For anything that would make you uncomfortable to try, call a professional instead. For any task with an increased level of personal danger, definitely call a professional rather than risking injury or worse. You should make it to 2019 in one piece!
4. Don’t Avoid Minor Repairs
Most homeowners have minor problems throughout their houses—little repairs that they never seem to get around to fixing. In 2018, resolve to finally address that missing ceiling tile, the drippy faucet, or the small hole in the drywall. You don’t need to do all the repairs at once; one repair per weekend or per month should suffice to get everything completed (with time to address any new issues) before next year.
5. Vents, Ducts, and Filters
Dust happens. So does lint. Although homeowners may be diligent about dusting surfaces around the house, they often forget about air ducts and furnace filters. A clogged filter or a dusty vent can affect the efficiency of your furnace, air conditioning, clothes dryer, and so on. This year, change filters regularly, and vacuum out vents (or hire an HVAC service for the job). Also, keep your central air unit free of debris and vegetation during the summer.
6. Think About Energy Savings
Replacing furnace filters is just one way to realize energy savings for your home. Plenty of additional measures can be taken that will save money and reduce your carbon footprint. Caulking drafty windows, using the program function on your thermostat, and using ceiling fans in the summer are just a few of dozens of ways to be more energy-efficient in 2018. Not only will you save some coin, but also you can make the world a better place for 2019 and beyond.
Which New Year’s resolutions have you made for your home in 2018?