The New Year is a great excuse to assess our growth and progress from the past year and also to look ahead to habits we may wish to develop or change in the coming year. Many people focus on personal health—opting to get their bodies in shape through proper eating and regular exercise. Just as we aim to shape up our physiques, it’s important to focus on our home environment. The area around us can influence our moods and actions. If our home feels organized and efficient, it’s easier to feel that way in our personal lives, too.
Here are a few resolutions to get your home in tip-top shape this year:
- Streamline your inventory – A very inexpensive way of improving the home is to simply get rid of clutter. Many humans are hoarders by nature. We find it hard to part with possessions, worrying that we may need them for something later. As a result, we often end up with mountains of clutter in our drawers, basements, and garage. In this way, our treasure becomes our burden. For the New Year, resolve to go room-by-room, drawer-by-drawer, removing anything that we haven’t used in the recent past. Consider donating your unwanted items. It may give you extra incentive to part with objects knowing that they will go to good use elsewhere.
- Improve house safety – Where home disasters are concerned, it’s easy to say, “That will never happen to me.” Accidents do happen, however, and the New Year is a great time to make a few preparations in case of emergency. Check for and eliminate any potential fire risk or health hazard. Make sure the batteries are up to date in your fire and smoke detectors. Check the house for radon, a colorless, odorless gas that causes lung cancer, using a test kit. Kits usually cost around $20—a worthwhile investment. If you don’t have carbon monoxide detectors, install those as well.
- Cut energy bills – Commit to help your power bills and the environment this year. You’ll feel better and save money. There are a few simple ways to do this. You can switch off lights whenever you leave a room (and remind your family members to do the same). Dial the heater down a few degrees at nighttime, and replace old light bulbs with energy-friendly versions. Make a plan to switch to drought-tolerant landscaping. You’ll save time and money in watering.
Get your 2017 off to the right start by making your home a happy, healthy, efficient place to be.