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by Monica Banks February 25, 2016

The warm season is ahead of us, and not far at that. February has relented and given us a glimpse of what's to come. Days of beautiful sunny weather begin popping up in the forecast and you start to remember how much you like spending time outside.

Spring Cleaning comes as a response to the change in weather. As we begin to put away the heavy layers of winter and break out the bright colors to match the sunshine, we start to reorganize and re-evaluate.

Spring signals more than just cleaning out your closet. Spring Cleaning is a time to look around you house and catch up with some project maintenance. Even if you aren’t making any big renovations, fix up the small things that are going to make the precious few summer months that much more enjoyable can make a big impact.

 

broken window screen

 

 1.  Window Screens
    There are few things akin to the feeling of open windows in the summertime. Opening your windows can transform your home into big, bright, good-for-the-soul spaces.  Screens can make all the difference. However, they have a bad habit of being damaged by branches, pets, people and any number of things. This year, while you’re taking out the storm windows and putting the screens in, take a good look at them and see if any of them need replacing.

     

     

    screened in porch

    2.   Screen Doors

    Many screen doors double as storm doors in the winter. As we transition from glass to screen, it is important to inspect your doors and see if they need to be replaced. If you have pets that are continuously scratching the door or ripping the screen, think of replacing yours with one that allows your pets in or out on demand (or both, repetitively).  You may also consider a door that’s solid on the bottom to prevent future pet damage, or installing a pet door. 

     

    home insulation

    3.  Insulation

    It’s not just for the cold winter months. If you’ve skipped the insulation step last winter or simply circumvented it with the glory of plastic, consider fixing your drafty areas. This can help keep your home at a comfortable temperature when things really start to heat up outside. If your windows aren’t shutting tight, consider replacing the hardware . Remember: AC bills can be just as bad as heating bills. Insulation is the gift that keeps on giving. Done right, it will help lower your heating/cooling bills and keep you comfortable at the same time.

     

    4.  Decking

    Decks, patios, porches or outside sitting areas can often be damaged in winter storms. Check for any broken railings, boards or stones before the prime outside entertainment month's hit. You won’t want to miss any of the sunshine because you were procrastinating your outdoor projects.

     

    porch furniture

    5.  Patio Furniture

    Did you leave it outside this winter? We’ve all been there, maybe you even did it on purpose because you are ready for an upgrade. No judgement, just be sure you’ve made sure you, and maybe a few favorite people, have a comfortable place to sit when you’re catching the rays.

     

    outdoor shower

    6.  Outdoor Shower

    Is it a luxury? Yes. However before you write this glorious feature out of your, life look around. It can be quite possible with a small bit of fencing and water spigot. Creating a simple enclosure can allow you to hang a sun shower up and avoid the extra plumbing. Just imagine your house as a sand and mud-free zone before you close the door on your outdoor shower dreams. A few pavers and small bit of fencing can make all the difference. Be creative and enjoy it! 

    outdoor fireplace

    

    7. Outdoor Fireplace

    They are not just for keeping cozy in the cold months. Get yourself an outdoor chiminea or standing fireplace if you don’t already have one. A fire is a great place to gather, can take off a summer chill and is great for roasting marshmallows or even searing a steak. Go ahead, everyone deserves a bit of luxury.

    chiminea

     

    The possibilities are exciting, but be careful not to overwhelm yourself. For a really effective Spring Cleaning this year, make a list and prioritize your projects. Deciding what is important to you and your home can make projects feel more manageable. If you are feeling like you don’t have the time or budget to make big changes right now, don’t despair. Making small changes can often do a lot for your space, and don’t be afraid to get creative. Tackle your Spring Cleaning improvements around the home and enjoy the golden sunshine in months ahead.

    Monica Banks
    Monica Banks



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