Fall Is a Great Time to Start DIY Renovations

As the weather turns cooler, you may be loking for projects that can make your home more cozy. One that Family Handyman suggests is to finsh your attic. This formerly unused space could easily be turned into a cozy nook or extra bedroom — and the natural tendency for heat to rise will make the most of your energy dollars. Smaller improvement projects to pursue might include painting, installing a new backsplash, cleaning a closet, reorganizing your kitchen cabinets and prepping your mudroom or entryway for the sloppy winter season, the story says. #FallProjects

Start Your Spring Cleaning Now

The calendar tells us that there are still almost two months to go before spring officially starts. And even if your area of the country is already experiencing periods of spring-like weather, the fact is that there really isn’t that much going on during the winter months.

Sports fans have big events to watch on TV, but there are no major holidays until Easter. Sure, you might choose to celebrate Valentine’s Day, Presidents’ Day or St. Patrick’s Day, but these holidays are unlikely to make a big dent in the social schedule.

Take advantage of that extra time by getting a jump-start on your spring cleaning.

The weather may still be treacherous, so instead of thinking about scrubbing and dusting, make your jump-start about decluttering. You can “clear a path” today so that your home is ready for a big scrubdown when the weather improves.

Start with your clothing. By this point in the winter, you know which items you and your family really use during the colder months, and which ones you don’t. Bag up those extra sweaters, fleeces and corduroys and contact ClothingDonations.org for a pickup.

Next, look at the junk you’ve accumulated. Are your closets overflowing with gadgets, tools and tchotchkes that you no longer want — or never did? Box ’em up and “transition” them out of your living quarters so they’ll be ready for the first garage sale of the spring.

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, so you’ll make a neighbor’s day even as you relieve yourself of all that stuff. Just don’t try to do all of the decluttering at once, Money Crashers says; pick a closet or room and get it exactly how you want it before moving on to another space.

Once the path is clear, you’ll have the time and space for a quick home-improvement project! A new coat of paint, refreshed bathroom tile or new carpeting will help elevate your mood, and it’s a good idea to get those messy renovations done before you deep-clean.

By the time Easter, Memorial Day and the other big holidays arrive, your house will be spacious, clean and inviting again. And you’ll be able to kick back and enjoy the warmer weather with a renewed sense of accomplishment.