It’s a new year, which means it’s a fresh start! While you are most likely making resolutions for yourself, here are a few 2019 resolutions for your home:

Organize/De-Clutter: This is easier said than done, but once it’s done, it is worth it. Start with giving away old clothes and cleaning out your closets. If you don’t wear it, get rid of it! Then you can move onto kitchen cabinets and drawers, especially that Tupperware cabinet. Also make sure to set a system for mail and kids’ papers. Make good use of the downtime of the season to go through your kids’ schoolwork and clear out any art projects or documents that you aren’t planning on saving. That way your pile in June isn’t too overwhelming. Don’t forget to clean out your electronic clutter too. Clearing out old emails and setting up folders within your email system will feel great.

Keep it Efficient/ Cut Energy Use: This is the perfect opportunity to make sure your home is energy efficient. Not only is it good for the environment, but your bank account will thank you. One suggestion is to replace any incandescent bulbs with LEDs (light-emitting diodes). They use 90% less energy and last fifteen times longer than standard bulbs. When you buy the new bulbs, make sure that the packages display the ENERGY STAR logo as they meet specific requirements to ensure energy efficiency and performance. Another energy saver is to plug your electronics into an advanced power strip. Some advanced power strips can even detect technology to turn outlets off when zero activity is detected in the room. Our third suggestion is to commit to smarter water use. Try and reduce the time you spend in the shower to 5 minutes. You can also install a low-flow showerhead and adjust the temperature setting on your water heater.

DIY – Family Activities: Why not get the whole family involved with home projects? It is a fun and creative way to spend time together, not to mention it’s productive as well. Projects around the house come in a variety of budgets and don’t always require that much time. Paint a bedroom, plant a tree in the backyard, prepare home emergency kits, rearrange a room, or re-organize the basement storage area. These are all easy projects that can be done together.

Budget and Save for Home Improvement: Make sure to account for home improvement expenses when creating your yearly budget. It could be anything from putting money aside for landscaping costs to water and heating and cooling bills, to replacing your roof– there are always home expenses that come up. By determining a plan to save, you will feel prepared and at ease if an unexpected cost comes up. Set the plan now, and stick to it!

Support your Community: Being an active member of your community is rewarding and an excellent contribution. Ways to help support your community include: shopping at locally-owned businesses such as grocery stores and restaurants, helping keep the community clean by keeping your yard tidy and even organizing a community cleaning event where you work together to clean up parks or other gathering areas. Support local events that keep your community fun. And always make sure to be friendly to your neighbors. That’s what living in a community is all about!

Happy New Year! -#HPHomes