Everyday stressors, the underlying anxiety of post-coronavirus living, the endless news cycle—there’s a lot to battle with at the moment. No doubt, it’s enough to bum you out from time to time.
But we’ve found something that helps us cope in these weird times—and it helps a lot: being productive. More specifically, checking off our home improvement to-do list. Plus, hey, making over your home, no matter how seemingly insignificant the improvements, always feels mega great, right?
In between family and work duties, here are 5 projects you can knock out while you’re stuck at home social distancing.
Your appliances, air conditioner, water purifier, vacuum cleaner—they all likely have filters you haven’t gotten around to changing or cleaning in a while. We’re all guilty of it, but now we finally have the time, so let’s go ahead and knock these out. Some of them will require monthly attention while others only need changing annually, so check the corresponding manuals and clean or replace as necessary.
Not only will it feel amazing to finally get this home project done, but it will actually improve the quality of you and your family’s lives: your appliances will work more efficiently, your water will taste better, and your home’s air quality will improve. That would feel pretty awesome, right?
DON’T FORGET TO CHECK VENTS, TOO
Many of the above items, but especially air conditioning systems and appliances, have vents that require regular cleaning. And if you’ve ever seen an old vent caked with dust, then you understand when we say touching these up can make a big difference in how your household items function. A little dusting or vacuuming is usually all it takes, but if you encounter any especially filthy vent covers, restore them by soaking them in your kitchen sink with a mixture of hot water and soap.
This one’s super important, and it usually only takes a few minutes. Start by testing every unit in the house, changing the batteries as necessary. If it’s been over ten years since you purchased new detectors, consider upgrading. If you’ve forgotten how to test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, consult the manuals or do a quick google search of their make and models for help.
Having the correct number of detectors placed in the right locations is just as important as ensuring they’re all in good working order. As a reminder, you should have at least 1 of each detector on every floor of your home, as well a smoke detector in each bedroom and a carbon monoxide detector within 10 feet of every sleeping area.
There are always a few dead lightbulbs lingering somewhere in the home. You’ve got the time, so let’s finally get them changed.
Do a quick sweep of each room, checking lamps, fixtures, etc, and replace any duds you stumble across (just make sure they’re cool to the touch before you start). This is also the perfect opportunity to consider upgrading older models for newer, more energy-efficient bulbs. They’re better for our environment and they’ll save you money in the long-run, making you a hero to both your family and the planet. You rock!
Even in the best of times, enduring the same old furniture layout for too long has a way of making things stale. But when you’re stuck inside social distancing, it’s enough to trigger cabin fever.
Even if it’s temporary, try switching things up: reshuffle wall hangings, reposition lamps, rearrange your sofa, tables and chairs. You’ll be amazed how much these quick changes will transform the look and feel of your home—and ultimately your own frame of mind.
While you’re moving things around, take the time to reorganize and declutter your home, too. Not sure how? We got you covered:
You know those old cans of paint you have squirreled away in your garage or closet? Well, they contain magic just waiting to happen. Nothing—and I mean nothing—has the capacity to upgrade the vibe of your home like a bright new coat of paint.
To start, consider refreshing the entire walls of common spaces like living rooms and dens—they’ll look almost brand new when you’re through! But if that seems a bit too intimidating, don’t sweat it, even touching up a few areas here and there can have a big impact. Simply go around your home and re-paint high-traffic areas like door frames, baseboards, doors, and wall sections scratched up from hanging decorations. It doesn’t sound like much, but trust us, you’ll be shocked by the results.
If you don’t have any spare wall paint leftover, spray painting is another fun option. If you have a few cans handy, consider changing up the look of mirror frames, stools, lamps, or other metal or wooden objects in need of some TLC. It’s fast, it’s easy, it’s rewarding, and honestly you’ll have a blast doing it.