When the days are short and the weekends seem even shorter, it can be a real challenge for most of us to get off the couch long enough to accomplish something. But if you’re looking for a productive way to combat the winter blues, making some easy improvements to your home might be the best thing you do on your next snow day.
Did you know that winter is one of the best times to paint? While we often associate repainting with the summer months because we can leave the windows and doors open, winter is actually the ideal time to accomplish an interior paint job.
For one, you might be able to get yourself a better deal. If you don’t feel like doing it yourself (or you have some very high ceilings that require much more than the stepladder you keep in the garage), you might be able to get a good deal on hiring a contractor. Since painting contractors typically have much busier summers, they might be willing to give you a lower bid for a winter interior paint job.
Another thing you might not have known is winter is the ideal time for curing paint. The humidity of the summer increases the amount of time it takes paint to dry, so you might not be stuck watching it dry for quite as long. And as long as your rooms have proper ventilation, you don’t have to worry about leaving all the windows wide open in the house.
To make your next painting project super easy, check out our painting tips and tricks.
Maybe one of your resolutions was to somehow (almost magically) become more organized. If you haven’t quite started that one yet, or if you need some motivation, winter is the perfect time to tackle this project. It’s a lot easier to work on mundane indoor tasks like these when the weather outside is frightful. You really don’t even have to change out of your pajamas for this one, either.
If your closet is a dusty mess, it’s time to kick out the spiders and remove the cobwebs. Are the walls scuffed from shoe soles or a wonky rod? Repaint it. Or, better yet, if you want to get really funky, you can add some wallpaper or vinyl decals to spruce it up. There’s no reason your closets have to be boring.
Now is also a good time of year to go through everything you’ve shoved in the closets and determine what you really need. Once you have everything organized, it’s much easier to put everything back in its place later down the road. It’ll also help the next time you need to shovel your driveway only to find none of your gloves are complete pairs. If you find that you need more hangers or storage bins, add them to your next shopping list.
If you need a little organizational boost, check out our tips for eliminating clutter.
Adding a little “something extra” to your kitchen doesn’t have to include complete renovation. Really, one of the easiest ways to change the look of your kitchen (and perhaps add some character or whimsy) is the addition of a backsplash.
This project might cost you a few hundred dollars, but overall it’s a relatively simple DIY project that can be accomplished over a weekend. While the installation is a fairly simple process, it can be quite tedious and time-consuming. To make installation easier and cleaner, places like Home Dept sell products like SimpleMat, which replaces traditional thinset mortar or adhesive. Peel and stick tiles also save time and help eliminate a lot of mess.
We recommend seeing if any of your local home improvement stores have free DIY workshops where you can learn the art of tile and backsplash.
Another super easy way to change the look of your kitchen is by swapping out the hardware. Cabinet and drawer knobs are available in thousands of styles, ranging from simple wood and metal to more ornate crystal. You’re really only limited by your imagination and budget (because these can get expensive–especially if you have a lot of cabinets).
Since the sunlight doesn’t last very long these days, now is the perfect time to lighten up your house. Investing in some new lights, lamps, or ceiling fans is an easy and affordable way to bring some more light and style to your house. Instead of buying completely new lamps, you can always simply replace the shades for a totally new look.
If you’re looking to save money in the long run, now is the time to make the switch to more energy-efficient bulbs if you haven’t already. Since you’re turning the lights on inside earlier, and keeping them on for longer, you might as well keep everything as economically as possible. LED style bulbs are available in contemporary styles as well as more decorative styles if you’re looking to make a bold statement with exposed bulb lighting fixtures.
If you’re looking to actually add lights and light fixtures to your home, we recommend that you always hire a professional when it comes to installation and electrical issues.
Refurbishing your doors might not be at the top of your to-do list, but why not? They typically tend to be the first thing you see when walking into a room. And if your closet, bedroom, bathroom, and pantry doors are typically closed at all times, they are essentially part of the walls (and wall decor). So if you’re going to invest your time and efforts into repainting your walls, you might as well rework your doors, too! Plus refurbishing is much cheaper than replacing them.
You can paint or stain your doors if they’re looking a little beat up, replace the door nobs if you’re feeling fancy (you can always match them to your new knobs!) or even add molding to flat doors if you want to create a little more dimension.
If your doors are a little squeaky or stiff, now is a good time to look into those problems, too. If you’re recently moved and haven’t changed the locks on the exterior doors, you might want to consider tackling that soon, too.
Sarah is a content writer and social media assistant with a BA in literature/creative writing from Wilkes University. When she’s not spending her days at work writing, reading, and drinking coffee, she’s usually at home reading, writing, and drinking coffee. She also devotes a fair amount of time to HGTV, drawing, and doting on her dog. As a creator, Sarah believes in emphasizing personality through design and DIY projects.