• Howard Gallagher

20 New Year's Resolutions for Homeowners

Updated: Feb 20

As we head into the New Year. This is the great time to start fresh and make resolutions. Here are 20 “Homeowner Resolutions” to try for 2020.

1. Give away anything you don’t need

Christmas came and went. Any gift you don’t love sits in your garage taking up space. Decluttering your home has great benefits for mind and body. Donate used items to your local charity. You will help people in need. Examples of local organizations that take used items are Goodwill, Salvation Army, and Hope Services.

2. Flush Your Water Heater

Your water heater works to keep your water at the right temperature. Check your water heater pressure relief valve to ensure it is relieving pressure properly. This is an annual task to ensure your water heater is working without problems.

3. Check your smoke detectors

Carbon monoxide is a silent killer. Make sure there are smoke detectors near your furnace and water heater. As they tend to overwork during the cold winter months.

4. Grow a small garden

It doesn’t take a lot of space to grow certain plants and herbs. Many italian restaurants use basil grown in small pots. As long as there is rich soil, water and light is available plants can grow anywhere. Vegetables need at least 6 hours of sunlight to grow properly. Gardening is beneficial for the body and mind. You save money on groceries, soak up sunshine, keeps you fit, and helps you relax.Some plants that you grow indoors are green onions, celery,bean sprouts, bok choy, onions,basil,mint,cilantro,

ginger,garlic,peppers,and many more.

5. Consider a service plan

A home warranty plan is a great way to guard your budget against unknown repair costs and get covered items repaired or replaced. A great home warranty company has a large network of licensed contractors, connections with part suppliers and offers plans that fit any budget.

6. Plan a remodeling project

Every home could use some level of remodeling. Given that certain projects like bathroom remodeling can cost over $10000. It is good to plan a remodeling project with some form of financing in place.Start out with a budget for materials and labor. The most common form of funding is a home equity loan or Home equity line of credit. If you don’t have a lot of equity in your home you can apply for a grant. If you are a disabled veteran you can qualify for housing grants from the Veteran’s Administration.

7. Look into your property tax assessment

Property Tax Assessment assess not only the value of your home but also the amount of property tax you will have to pay. You can wait for the annual property tax letter in the mail or you can search “City Name” Assessor office. If you notice a difference in property taxes compared to last year then make an appeal.

8. Clean Dishwasher Door Gaskets

Food and soap residue gets stuck in your dishwasher over time. This puts wear and tear on your unit. By simply cleaning the gaskets with a wash cloth can solve the problem.

9. Use Energy-Efficient Appliances

Saving the planet can help save your budget. Using energy efficient product can cut your budget by 75%. Energy saver appliances last longer and save you money.

10. Insulate Your Home

Whether it is winter or summer, Your home should be well insulated. You don’t want temperature adjusted air escaping the doors, nooks and ducts of your home. Invest in door weather stripping to insulate your home.

11. Change Fridge Filter

A clogged filter can cause serious problems for your refrigerator. Common issues such as low water pressure or strong smelling ice can stem from a clogged filter. Changing your filter is easy task that will help maintain your refrigerator.

12. Check Washer hoses

No one wants to go without a washer . Washer hoses should be replaced every 3 to 5 years. Look for any dents in the hose. If there are any imperfections then replace the hose right away.

13. Think about Retirement

Evaluate your current plan for retirement. Even if you have several years until you retire it is great to go over this information with a financial advisor. Discuss mutual funds, Roth-IRA and safe investments. If you just started your career journey then brainstorm possible skills to learn or degrees to pursue.

14. Relax

Spend a 5 minutes a day to meditate or relax in nature. Life can be stressful but meditation has been proven to help people focus more,sleep better and feel younger.

15. Build an emergency fund

Hurricanes and natural disaster can happen . You want to prepare your family for the worst. After your home insurance and home warranty plan has helped you get your home back. You would want a few months of expenses saved for any unexpected problems.

16. Improve your relationship with your tenants

If you are a landlord then this is for you. Work with your tenants to create a better renter experience. This can be as simple as a welcome basket or adding a bonus to renting your home.

17. Check Your Gutters

A roof is exposed to hundreds of gallons of rain in a year. If your gutters are clogged that water can enter your home or worse your foundation. This can lead to expensive water damage repairs. Before and after a major storm check your gutters and remove any debris.

18. Install a Small Safe

Home security is becoming more important as we go into the 2020s. Technology makes it easier for criminals to get information on you and your home. This means investing in new locks, motion detector lighting, window alarms and a safe. Unless you are in fort knox, you won’t need a large safe. You will likely just need a small safe to secure documents like social security cards and the deed to your home. Fasten it to the floor or wall.

19. Watch out for Radon

Radon is a natural gas that can enter your home through any opening. It is a toxic gas that over time can cause serious illness like lung cancer. Like carbon monoxide it is odorless,colorless and tasteless. Testing your home for radon is annual necessity. Contact your local health department or get a radon test kit at your local home depot.

20. Water Sensors

This year you should look into water sensors for your home. Water sensors are devices that alert you immediately if there is a leak in your water heater. This can help stop further water damage to your home.

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