Seven resolutions your home will thank you for in 2018
Happy New Year! The second hand has just passed midnight to welcome in 2018 and in addition to considering topping up that glass of fizz, many of us will now be pondering New Year resolutions.
Whether it’s personal goals, business aims or romantic endeavours, we all have things that need tackling in the new year. But most of these pale into insignificance when it comes to sorting out the really important thing in life; where you live.
So why not make some promises to your home this year? They needn’t cost a lot of money and will reward you by taking worries off your mind; plus helping you make a more comfortable, welcoming place to live while you work your way through your other resolutions.
Lower your bills
This is a big one and can actually be a lot easier than you think. We all use electricity, gas, digital TV, insurance, telephone, or broadband and most of us are happy to go with whichever providers we already use. However, many households could save hundreds of pounds each year by switching (or threatening to).
So why not spend an hour or so and earn yourself a couple of hundred of hundred quid? You can quickly compare energy quotes, or simply get in touch with your existing suppliers and let them know you’re thinking of switching. You’ll be surprised at the deals many will offer to entice you to stay. We all know it’s not the most interesting task, but is potentially the most rewarding.
Tackle that damp
A lot of properties, particularly older ones, suffer from damp patches. This is not only unsightly, but can also be bad for your health. Yes, our old enemy damp is the number one cause of wood rot, structural damage, peeling paint, and a variety of respiratory ailments. Depending on the severity of any damp you may have in your property, it could be something you’ve been putting up with for no reason. A small damp patch can easily be ignored and covered up, with only a bit of flaky paint or peeling wallpaper as a clue to what lies beneath.
Come on guys, it’s the 21st century. Let’s make 2018 the year of damp-free homes as this problem really does need to be consigned to the history books. Whether it’s rising, penetrating and condensation, find a local damp proof specialist and they’ll identify what type it is and identify the cause. It won’t cost a lot and will stop the problem spreading, plus help you breathe a little easier about your home in more ways than one.
Give cold floors the cold shoulder
Cold floors are another home problem that we believe should be stamped out once and for all. Wood, stone and tile will usually feel cold, but if you are planning any renovations that involve replacing or fitting flooring, consider installing underfloor heating at the same time. Modern systems are really affordable and can also save money by raising the ambient temperature of the room so the heating doesn’t have to work as hard.
If this isn’t on the cards, try and install underfloor insulation (particularly in ground floor rooms) to keep those tootsies toasty.
Exclude the draughts
Another issue experienced in older properties, but also sometimes apparent in less-than-perfect new ones, are draughts. Cold air coming through gaps in windows, doorframes or floorboards isn’t just annoying, it also means your home costs more to heat and will be far less energy efficient. Promise yourself that you’ll carry out a draught assessment, or find a local insulation professional to help and sort any out that you find.
Concentrate on condensation
If you’re seeing regular condensation on your windows, something needs to be done about it. This foggy problem is caused by an excess of moisture inside condensing on colder windows and steaming them up. If it’s cold outside, the problem is exacerbated as the temperature difference is wider. The issue is also aided and abetted by moisture inside the home (this is caused by things like boiling pans of water, cooking and drying laundry or more serious damp issues). The secret to curing condensation is a mixture of insulation and ventilation. If you don’t already have double or triple glazing, don’t wait any longer. You’ll feel the benefit of a warmer home, lower energy bills and less condensation. Find a local window installer, ask for a quote and get 2018 off to a clearly better start.
Give your paintwork more a-peel
Peeling or faded paintwork? Whether indoor or out, this is another problem many of us gloss over as unimportant. But if it’s on your lovely timber door and window frames, flaking paint will be letting in moisture which could lead to rot and even bigger problems. And if the paint inside is not at its best, it can make your home’s interior look dull and gloomy. So why not treat yourself to a brighter 2018 and sort the problem out? Many decoration jobs are easy to handle yourself, or find a local professional decorator for a quote and get the job done safely and right, particularly important with exterior windows of high access jobs?
Make the switch to low energy bulbs
Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and LEDs are a really affordable option for most household lighting requirements. According to figures from the Energy Saving Trust, swapping a traditional light bulb with an LED can save between £3 to £6 per year. And by replacing all the bulbs in your home with LED alternatives, you could save around £35 a year on your electricity bills. So they’ll pay for themselves fast (depending on how many you need) and then start saving you money each year from then on.