It may be difficult to think about the holidays when you’re enjoying the summer sun under a perfect Carolina Blue sky, but summer is actually the best time to plan winter projects. Why? Because if you are contemplating a renovation or addition in time for your holiday guests to arrive, taking the time to do it right now – before the frantic rush – is perhaps the best gift you can give yourself.
Here are our top 7 projects to consider now:
- Converting screened porches into sunrooms. This is a project you can really enjoy now, because closing in these areas helps to eliminate summer pollen and keeps you out of the heat as well as winter’s chill. Do this project now and then enjoy the additional enclosed space on a year round basis. A sunroom is really an economical way to increase both your heated and cooled square footage and thus, the value of the home.
- Outdoor living areas – particularly backyard patios, BBQ areas and masonry fireplaces. Why now? In summer, we simply have better access to your backyard. Your lawn tends to be much drier, so heavy equipment won’t be as damaging to your grass. Plus, you can enjoy the improvements this summer!
- Extensive additions that require opening a wall or digging footings. Beginning these long-term projects now is easier and much more energy efficient. (Imagine opening up a wall in your kitchen and trying to keep the rest of the house warm when it’s 20 degrees outside!) Once again, since the ground is drier, it’s also quicker and less costly (in both time and labor) to dig footings and a lot less mess. Also, with more hours of daylight, work can be completed more quickly.
- Kitchen additions.The kitchen is the heart of your home, and these projects simply take time to complete. (The average kitchen remodel takes approximately 10 weeks, depending on the extent of the project and the level of customization of its components.) If you plan it now, order what you need early, and avoid the rush when everyone else is frantically trying to squeeze it in, you’ll be certain that your project is completed on time. The bonus is that you’ll be familiar with your renewed kitchen, new appliances, etc. well before the holidays, which will make entertaining go much more smoothly.
- Dormers put on or having a garage roof removed to add an upstairs. Even in the south where our winters are mild, snow and ice storms still can be a concern. So if you plan on opening up a roof, do it well before there’s a chance of severe weather.
- Exterior upfits. If you want your home to make a great first impression on guests, make repairs now. May and June are great times to paint the exterior of your home, because the paint cures better than in the extreme heat of August/September or the chill of November/December. Summer is also the time to replace garage doors, because track adjustments go more smoothly in warm weather than when it is cold.
- Inside jobs. Common projects like opening up a wall between rooms to improve the appearance and flow of a space, or floor refinishing are best planned now. Why? Because the sooner you get them on the calendar, the more quickly they’ll be done. Anytime a project involves engineers, subcontractors like electricians and plumbers, multiple permits and inspections, and moving furniture, etc., it makes sense to plan ahead. Remodeling and the holidays can both be stressful, so why add a worry about whether your project will be finished on time? When you are not pushing a contractor to complete the job, they’ll be able to take their time and do it right, which ultimately will make you and your family much happier with the results for years to come.