Spring has almost sprung. The weather is warming up, the days are getting longer, and summer is almost within reach. For homeowners, this is a good time to get started on some projects that have been waiting for winter to pass.
Before jumping in, there are a couple of things to keep in mind before you get started:
Yes, Pinterest and home renovation shows have tempting ideas on what you should get started on first to keep up with the latest trends and styles, but not every family is going to use or have space for EVERYTHING in their backyard. Rather than overwhelm yourself or start projects you can’t physically or financially finish, sit down and make a list of your family’s wants/needs and your own personal wants/needs, then go from there. Decide what makes the cut based on how you would use it/where it would best fit into your life.
Some of these projects are just for you; not everyone is going to appreciate a tie dye wallpaper ceiling in the dining room, and that’s ok. But if you think you might consider putting your home on the market soon, maybe focus on the projects that will add resale value to your home and make it more attractive to buyers. While it’s also okay to do projects that will make you happy right now, even if you know your family will outgrow them, it might still help to have an idea of how you will reuse the space later.
Of course, not everyone is an electrician or a plumber. Not only is that completely understandable, it’s in fact advisable to call in a professional for jobs you aren’t comfortable performing yourself. But if you can find ways to do some of the work yourself, you can help decrease your overall costs. Even better, when you bring friends and family together to help complete a DIY, it builds a memory that will make the finished project that much more special.
Once you have mapped out a plan in your mind for what projects you’d like to take on to freshen your home for spring, take a look at some of these fun and unique ideas.
Make a Welcome Space for Animals
Just picture it: a peaceful koi pond in your garden with water lilies, a gentle breeze making ripples across the surface as fish are swimming about. This could be a reality with a little planning and some work. Look for the most level area in your yard, ideally with a little shade so you can sit and admire your handiwork all spring and summer long.
While you are at it, look at the animals that are in your neighborhood. Bird feeders or houses, bat boxes, owl boxes: these are all ways to invite more nature into your space. Choose a good location for animal homes and feeders so you can bird watch if you wish without having to get too close.
Living a green lifestyle is great for our environment, and while recycling is one way to cut down on waste, composting takes it to the next level. Once you get the containers you need and look into what can be composted, it’s not much work to maintain, leaving you with nutrient rich compost your plants will love.
DIY to Your Heart’s Content
Whether you are looking for purely ornamental landscaping or something more functional, a little planning will go a long way. Knowing which plants are native to your area, which species grow best together, and the best planting season for every seedling before you get started will save you the headache later. Check with a local greenhouse or nursery to see what they recommend. Some may even offer classes or seminars to help you get the most out of your garden. And if you are a beginner or don’t actually have a lot of space, container gardens are a great way to get started. Even just a pot of rosemary, lemon balm or mint can help you by repelling insects.
There’s also something so satisfying about eating from your own garden. Depending on your climate, there are lots of beautiful plants and trees that can provide food in addition to making your landscape beautiful. Make sure you do your research on the type of light your yard provides: some plants grow best in full sun while others love the afternoon shade.
Deck it Out
Since you are looking to spend more time in the yard, it might be time to add or upgrade your deck. Did you know that by adding a 16-by-20-foot pressure-treated wood deck, you’ll get a 90.3 percent return at resale on average, according to HGTV? Talk about beautiful, functional and a good investment!
Get Cozy by the Fire
Summer nights making s’mores around the fire isn’t just a camper’s favorite pastime. Building a backyard fire pit gives you a place to relax, unwind and enjoy your backyard long after the sun goes down. And, unless you are building a very elaborate one, it can be done in a weekend and enjoyed for years to come.
Spruce Up Indoors
There’s a reason they call it spring cleaning. There’s just something so refreshing about shedding the old and starting with a fresh, or at least fresher, slate. There are many methods for clearing out unused or unnecessary gear. Regardless of which one you choose, consider donating unwanted items that are still in good condition. It helps to prevent extra junk in the landfills and gives the chance for someone else to extend the life of your treasures.
Bring in the Light
New light fixtures or new windows can save on your energy bill, bring light into the dark recesses, and quite literally brighten up your life. Consider changing out your heavy drapes with some gauzy, dreamy sheers to give a bit of privacy while not blocking out all that sunshine. Imagine cozy mornings with the day’s first rays pouring in as you sip your cup of coffee or tea.
Adjust Your Perspective
One of the least expensive ways to make a bold change in your home is a fresh coat of paint. Make sure to clean and prime your walls before you get started and consider taking this opportunity to move some of the furniture and décor around; a change in perspective can really refresh what is already present.
A recent trend that is gaining popularity is to paint your walls a neutral color and wallpaper your ceiling with something eye-catching and fun. If you are scared to commit to a permanent wallpaper, consider removable wallpaper found at most home improvement stores, as well as online.