New Year's Resolutions From Budget Blinds That Will Keep Your Home Warm and Happy

ORANGE, CA - (Marketwire - Dec 19, 2012) - As the year comes to a close, many people are reminded of their resolutions from the past year. Many resolved to keep up with their home maintenance. How did you do? Was your New Year's resolution to fix those air leaks in the window? Well if you haven't done it yet, the time is now; winter is coming. The winds of winter are on their way and that means that it's time to assess your home's insulation situation and save yourself some money while also providing your home with trendy new fashions. If you have never done it before, the first thing you should do to winterize your home is conduct an energy audit.

Hiring a professional energy auditor may seem unnecessary, but turning your home into an energy efficient machine will help you save more money in the long run. The auditor will point out spots of energy waste, poorly insulated areas and air leaks, and other places which are the main causes of higher than usual utility bills during the winter months. Once the auditor has pointed out the areas that need home improvement, it's time to go about winterizing those areas to save as much money as possible.

The term "winterize" is used in professional inspection services to refer to houses that are going to be vacant during the winter. However, there are ways to prepare (winterize) your home while living in it, which effectively protects it from the damaging effects of the harsh weather. There are two different ways to go about winterizing your home and making sure that you finish up those New Year's resolutions with plenty of time to spare. You can winterize your home in terms of practicality; insulation, air leaks, etc. and you can also winterize in terms of interior décor and design ideas for the upcoming holidays and winter in general.

You should be well into your preparations for keeping your home in shape if you live in an area that has blisteringly cold winters with long white nights. If the weather hasn't turned icy on you just yet, consider these tips for helping you make it through the winter in a comfortable and cozy fashion.

Improve insulation. Poor insulation can cost you money on your utility bill year round, but especially during the winter when your cozy warm air is seeping through different leaks. If your home is not well-insulated, you will end up spending more money on gas and electricity trying to keep the heat in during the winter and out during the summer. This makes insulation improvements a top priority on your New Year's to-do-list for home repair and maintenance.

  • Insulate all piping exteriorly exposed
  • Insulate your hot water tank with an insulation blanket

Doors

  • Install weatherstripping
  • Use a door sweep for extra insulation
  • Like storm windows, storm doors can help you save money by eliminating air leaks in this area

Windows

  • Find air leaks and seal them with caulking
  • Consider installing storm windows
  • Insulate your windows and save money in the New Year with eco-friendly shades that can also help keep you warm during the winter. The use of custom window coverings can help your home keep the heat in when the winds are blowing

Roofing

  • Replace missing or damaged shingles
  • Clean gutters and downspouts
  • Check flashing around chimneys and other roof protrusions. Air often leaks around these areas

Outdoor landscape

  • Cover furniture and external air conditioners
  • If your deck needs it, seal it before the wet winter ruins it completely
  • Drain gas from lawn mowers, leaf blowers and other outdoor equipment
  • Drain water from fountains
  • Purge sprinkler systems by shutting off water and blowing compressed air through system

Preparing your home for winter doesn't have to mean locking yourself up in an igloo for four months! You can prepare your home for winter by redecorating your interior to match the seasonal trends and to add a new level of comfort and coziness to your humble abode. Winter decorations are often based on the winter holidays such as Thanksgiving and Christmas. A fashionable and practical way to decorate your home during winter is to switch out your current window treatments for energy saving window shades. Close-fitting cellular shades can help your home retain its heat during the chilly winter and you can use coloring to complement the rest of your home's holiday décor. Try using a few of these decorative ideas in your home to make it extra comfy and increase the holiday spirit to boot!

  • Replace sofa pillows and blankets with winter-themed counterparts<
  • Exchange normal bedding with festive holiday pillow covers, sheets and duvet covers
  • Change an area rug to instantly provide that room with a new mood or feeling. Consider using an area rug that complements the rest of your wintery accessories!

For a more permanent solution for your window treatment issues, you could install motorized window shades that raise and lower with the flip of a switch or the touch of a button. These window coverings will give you ultimate mastery of your windows and provide you with an easy way to provide or block light and heat entering and exiting your home through windows. Combine motorized insulating window treatments with festive drapery panels and decorative tie backs. A great holiday themed decoration idea is to hang some extra ornaments from your window treatments to give them some holiday cheer!

About Budget Blinds

Budget Blinds®, a Home Franchise Concepts, Inc. ® brand, is a custom window coverings franchise that offers convenient shop-at-home service for window coverings and home décor accessories.

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