A new year often feels like the time to get your house in order, both literally and figuratively.
If you’ve been putting off some big DIY tasks over the autumn and winter months, make it a priority to return to planning them and getting started in January.
Here are five house and garden DIY resolutions to make for New Year 2020, to help keep things on track as we move towards the spring and summer months.
1. Don’t delay
Stop putting off jobs that you could easily start today. If you only have a few spare minutes, watch a how-to video online or make a list of materials you need.
When you get a free weekend or a day off work, don’t waste it. DIY jobs around the house and garden can quickly pile up. Get them done and you won’t face a mountain of individual tasks in the future.
2. Finish what you start
Once you do start a job, aim to complete it within a sensible time frame. For things like repainting a room, that might take several days if you need to allow primers and undercoats to dry.
For other jobs, like clearing out a cluttered room or sprucing up the garden, it might be a one-day job, so making sure you get it done before the end of that day can prevent it from rolling over into more of your valuable free time.
3. Be organised
There are other ways to be organised and methodical about your DIY projects. If you’re going to have a lot of waste materials, hire a skip beforehand and you can avoid wasting time driving back and forth to the tip.
For indoor DIY jobs, make sure you have plenty of dust sheets and masking tape, as it’s easier to prevent dirt and damage than it is to restore other surfaces that you didn’t protect upfront.
4. Work with the weather
For outdoor DIY jobs in the garden, especially right at the start of the year, work with the weather conditions as much as possible, and don’t assume tomorrow will be the same as today.
You won’t be able to dig in frozen ground, so if you plan to do some excavating, it might even be worth getting out in the rain to dig when temperatures are a little warmer, even if it means getting muddy.
5. Home improvement
They’re called ‘home improvements’ for a reason, so make sure the jobs you do in your house and garden in the new year are making things better, adding value, or at least making you feel happier in your home.
Remember, if you’re not confident doing something, it might be worth calling in a professional, even if you do the rest of the job yourself – don’t tackle things like plumbing and wiring unless you know what you’re doing! By planning ahead, adopting a start-finish approach and calling in experts when you need help, you can get those jobs done that have been languishing on your to-do list, leaving yourself free to enjoy a less stre