Home Improvement Projects to Help Beat Cabin Fever
Feeling bored and cooped up while winter trudges on? You don’t have to wait until spring to start a few home improvement projects. In fact, winter can be the perfect time for certain projects, since you’re indoors anyway, looking for something to do.
People don’t often think of winter as the best time of year for home improvement projects. While you’re probably not going to want to tear down a wall of your Philly home in the middle of winter or lay down new hardwood floors when the air is very dry, this time of year can be ideal for a number of projects. Whether you’re looking for a small change or something larger, here are some home improvement projects worth trying before spring.
Get New Lighting
Since the days are so short and there is less sunlight overall, you might notice that your home has a serious lighting problem once winter rolls around. If you’ve noticed that your rooms are slightly dim or that there are strange shadows cast on the walls or furniture, investing in new lighting might be just what you need.
There are few basic lighting rules to keep in mind when picking out a new lamp or two. If you’re replacing the light by your bathroom mirror, either choose two lamps to put on the side of the mirror or a long, horizontal lamp for above the mirror. Placing a single bulb directly above your mirror will cast shadows on your face, making you wish you didn’t have a light at all. The right-height table lamp should be right at the level of your shoulder when you sit in a chair next to it. And, the right size for a chandelier or fixture over a dining room table is one foot in diameter smaller than the width of your table.
If you don’t have the budget to invest in new lighting fixtures for your home right now, a wallet-friendly fix is to invest in more energy efficient bulbs. Whether you pick compact fluorescent bulbs or LEDs, you’ll see a reduction in the amount of energy your home uses when you swap out your incandescent bulbs. Plus, CFLs and LEDs have much longer lives than the traditional bulb, so you don’t have to worry about replacing them as often.
Add a New Coat of Paint
Painting a room in winter might seem like a bad idea, but winter can be the ideal time to paint. If you’ve ever tried to paint in late spring or summer in Philly, you know that the high humidity can make it seem as though it takes ages for things to dry enough for you to add another coat. But, in winter, the low humidity helps speed up the process. This winter might just be perfect for painting, because temperatures haven’t been that low, but the air has still been dry. If you’re worried about ventilation, crack a window in the room you’re working in, pick a paint that is low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and plug in a fan to get the air circulating.
Clear Stuff Out
When you spend a lot of time indoors during the winter, it can start to feel as if the walls are closing in. One way to give yourself more space is to start clearing out the items you don’t use. Go through your home room by room, looking for items you haven’t used in a while or that you don’t like. Box them up to be donated, sold, or thrown away, depending on their condition.
Whether you plan on listing your Philadelphia home in the spring or want to spruce it up for your own enjoyment, don’t discount winter as a season for getting things done. While you wait for the temperatures to climb, there is a lot you can do to improve your home.
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