Monday, July 20, 2009

Making the Most of Your Summer Weekends

There were no posts this weekend because I was up to my elbows in paint. My goal for each weekend throughout the summer has been to make some sort of improvement to our house before for the coming fall and winter.

Home improvement projects are a great way to get prepared. By doing simple things such as clean up, painting, cleaning or replacing carpet, installing new appliances, etc, you reap the following benefits:
  • You create a nicer environment in which to live.
  • If you do need to move quickly, your home is already in sell-able condition. It doesn't take a major overhaul to get your place ready to sell.
  • Your home functions better and you preclude major problems. You can clean out the gutters and winter rains will flow away from your home like they are supposed to or you can not clean out the gutters and the water will overflow and damage your foundation and siding. Regular maintenance will allow the systems in your home to function as they are supposed to and you are less likely to develop major, preventable problems down the road.
  • Your home is safer. Cleaning the moss off of your stairs now, during the summer, will make your stairs infinitely safer when the weather turns colder and wetter. A well cared for home also send a message to the public that the people who live in the home are a) usually home because all of these improvement projects take time, b) aware of their surroundings and will notice when something is out of place, and c) these are people who will take action and not just let things slide.
  • You save money in a variety of ways. Taking care of small roof problems now precludes a major (and more expensive) fix later. Clearing everything out of a room to paint allows you to sort through what you have when you put it back. This makes it easy to find lost items so you don't duplicate your purchases and also allows you to organize and store items that may come in handy during a disaster. Also, simple things such as insulating your hot water tank or doing some home weatherization projects will save you money on your utility bills come fall and winter.
  • It's good exercise. You don't need a gym when you are lifting, hauling, and generally moving for eight to ten hours a day.
  • You learn new skills. Even if you have never done much home maintenance, you can start with simple projects (like painting) then move up to larger projects (like plumbing). Most home improvement skills can be learned from books, online, or skilled friends and as a bonus, these are usually skills that you can sell to others who need things done around their homes.
  • Home maintenance projects are also good family maintenance projects. When families work together, not only are valuable skills passed on to the next generation, but everyone learns how to function together as a team (this is a good survival skill!).
  • You become more in tune to your home and local environment. When you know how things usually work in your home, yard, and neighborhood, you are more likely to have the heightened awareness to notice when something seems "off".
Although there are plenty of other things I would like to be doing on my summer weekends, taking the time to do maintenance and home improvement projects now will pay off later. Whether I avert a home disaster such as a fire caused by poorly stored chemicals or a larger SHTF disaster because all of my supplies and equipment are organized and ready to go at a moment's notice, taking the time to improve my home will pay a range of dividends.


  1. Funny story, my Hubby is off work for the Summer, so we sat down to make a list of some of the projects that we have wanted to get done, but just never have the time. I am still working full time, so we thought he could work on the little stuff during the weekdays, and we could tackle a bigger project every weekend. By the time the list was done, we have weekends covered for the NEXT YEAR! Good Grief!

  2. We did the same thing and my list is probably about as long as your list!