Beat the Winter Blahs by Sprucing Up Your Home

Spring is still a few months away, fall is long gone and summer is just a distant memory. You are stuck in the middle of winter and you have the February blahs.

This is the time of year when most Manitoba homeowners go a bit stir crazy and need some relief to get over the hump. Why not put the mid-winter blahs to good use and tackle some of those interior renovations and decorating jobs you have been putting off?

Now is the perfect time to take a look inside your home and get a head start on those upgrades that never seem to get done when the weather is nice. Things like carpeting, wallpapering, painting, adding new lighting, or even kitchen, bathroom and basement renovations can easily be accomplished right now while you have the time.

Your main consideration is to assess how much a job will disrupt the household. In winter, family members don't have the option of spending time outside during extensive renovations, so a job such as installing hardwood floors would be difficult. As well, most major painting jobs need to be undertaken in the summer when ventilation is possible.

On the other hand, many home improvements make ideal winter jobs. Installing new carpets is an extremely popular winter upgrade for many homeowners. Redoing a den, rec room or bedroom will not only add spice, but give greater comfort and warmth.

You shouldn't be concerned about replacing every carpet in your home, because slush and snow are bound to be tracked throughout. A good move would be to delay re-carpeting your living room or front hallway until the weather improves. Anything else is fair game.

Wallpapering is a chore ideally suited to winter. It can be a bit messy, but can be completed room by room in a fairly short period. Bedrooms, dens and especially dining rooms are excellent candidates for sprucing up.

Papering your dining room can be accomplished with minimal fuss, and a bright new papering job in a child's bedroom can do wonders to make the winter easier to take.

Lighting is another item that can make your winter more palatable. Replacing the chandelier in your dining room can be a real winner and, for an added twist, you could install track lighting in your living room or den. Don't forget hallways; an antique lamp picked up at a curio shop can greatly improve the ambience.

These suggestions could all be considered cosmetic in nature, but you shouldn't discount the value of undertaking more major upgrades during the winter.

Functional improvements such as kitchen and bathroom renovations are among the most likely to increase the net worth of your home. Surveys have shown that most prospective buyers rate these above a new pool, deck or extensive landscaping. In addition, most contractors are busiest in the spring and summer, so you stand a good chance of getting a favourable rate if professionals are involved.

Adding new kitchen cupboards is a fairly workable upgrade. The kitchen can still be used for food preparation during construction and meals could be eaten in the dining room or den.

Replacing major appliances is also a good option. Installing a new fridge, stove or dishwasher require the same amount of effort regardless of the season.

If you are lucky enough to have two or even three bathrooms, why not select one of them for renovation? Again, contractors may work for less during the winter, so you may come out ahead of the game.

Another excellent opportunity for improvement exists in your basement. If you have been thinking about adding a new rec room or getting started on an in-law apartment, the winter offers a chunk of time that could be put to good use. Apart from laying concrete floors, just about anything is possible, including putting up walls and ceilings, or laying carpet.

While you are at it, you could take a look at your cellar or garage and build that shelving you've been promising yourself for the last decade or so. It would certainly help during spring cleaning when you need somewhere to put all the boxes of winter stuff.

Don't let the mid-winter blahs get the better of you. The winter months offer a great chance to get some of those upgrades and improvements over with so you will have more time to enjoy the summer - when it finally arrives.



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All the Suds on Baths
Burglar-Proofing Your Home
Burn Home Fires Safely
Bring Fitness Home
Beat the Winter Blahs
Burglar-Proof Your Home
Create More Storage Space
Cut Your Energy Costs This Winter
Cook Up a New Kitchen!
Decorating A Kid's Room
Fall Gardening Pays Off in Spring
Give Your Home a Tune-Up
Give Your Home A Makeover
Garden Year-Round in Your Home
Give Your Home a Facelift
Get Your Spring Garden Growing
Get Your Garden Ready For Spring!
Get Ready to Garden!
Get Your Home Ready for the Cold
Getting Your Cottage Ready for Summer
How Clean is your Air?
Head Start on Spring Gardening
Holiday Safety Comes First
Improve Your Surroundings with Paint
It's Time For Spring Cleaning
Is it Worth Renovating?
Keeping A Roof Over Your Head
Light Your House for Safety
Light and Colour
Move or Renovate?
Make Your Bedroom Your Get-Away
Make Your Bathroom Beautiful
Need a New Driveway?
Renovate Your Basement
Staying On Top Of Your Roof!
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Time to Change Your Flooring?
Tips to "Noise-Proof" Your Home
Unclutter Your Home
Use Caution to Protect Your Home
Winterize Your Home
Winter Safety Smarts
Windows: Replace or Repair?
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