By Jenna Smith
Congratulations, you are a homeowner! The place is all yours. No longer must you adhere to strict rental agreements or lease terms. Now you can change what -and decorate however- you want. Here are some immediate home improvement tips to consider as soon as, or even before, you move in:
1. Replace Your Water Heater
Most homes still have the traditional water heater. They work fine, but you’ll be much happier with an environmentally friendly one (make sure it uses commercial water filters). Environmentally friendly water heaters heat the water as it flows through the tank, which means that you’ll never run out of hot water. They save you a ton of money on your electric or gas bill. In some states, installing these types of water heaters will also qualify you for a tax credit. So, not as much fun as new wallpaper, maybe, but this is a project that pays off immediately. And it’s not a complicated project; replacing a water heater should only take a day, at most.
2. Put in New Floors
It’s one of the first things new homeowners do, and once again, you will want to consider the environment. Cork flooring is environmentally friendly, because it helps regulate the temperature within the rooms in which they are installed. This means it’s wallet friendly too because it helps to reduce your heating and cooling costs. Installing this type of flooring is something that you can do yourself for an affordable price and over the course of a weekend.
When you live in an apartment you’re seldom allowed to paint the walls. But not so when you live in your own home. Although your newfound freedom to paint in any color you can imagine is tempting, try to resist this urge. Sticking with a neutral color will make it easier for you to find pieces – couches, rugs, curtains – that will fit in with your color scheme. If you really want to use a bold or wild color, try just one wall in the hue, which wall becomes an “accent wall”.
4. Choose Your Utility Company
Most cities have at least a couple of different options available to you in terms of utilities. Spend some time researching them before you commit to anything. Make sure that you are getting the best rates possible. And again, it’s worth it to think of the environment and use a company that runs renewable energy to your home. Don’t forget to check out the natural gas options in your area as well. Natural gas is cheaper, more environmentally friendly, and just as effective in terms of heating and providing power to your home.
There’s no doubt you’ll have an endless wish-list for ways to improve your new home. Starting with the four mentioned here will immediately make it your own and save you money in the meantime. Enjoy your new home!
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Originally published on The Seattle Lesbian
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