Now that you have finally moved into your new house or apartment, it is time to make the adjustments necessary to turn the place from a mere property into the home of your dreams. With the skyrocketing rent and purchase prices that we all have to pay in recent years, it would be a shame if you did not make your household precisely the way you want it to – anything else would just not be worth it the money.
Remember, building a better, more efficient and pleasant home takes time and requires some skills. In case you do not feel up to some of the tasks that you are going to need to carry out, there is literally nothing bad in calling your local repair helpers (i. e. hire a handyman in Central London, for example) to give you the help you need.
Step 1: Get rid of clutter
One of the main reasons people do not manage to feel at ease when they get back home is clutter. All those unnecessary items scattered across the rooms, rubbish and chaos reigning at the place where you are supposed to find comfort and peace. There are several ways in which clutter is to be fought off your property:
- Get rid of all items you do not use. If you have not even thought of using a certain piece of appliance, furniture or whatever for the past year, you definitely do not need it.
- Put everything in its exact designated place right after you are done using it.
- Unsubscribe to all paper newsletters, bills etc. Paper is one of the main ingredients of household clutter.
- Do not skip your spring cleaning.
- Learn to buy less.
Step 2: Do home improvements
This is especially important in those cases when you have just moved in your current place, but of course you can use it for when you have been a permanent resident of the apartment or house for years. The thing is that you should have your home reflect your personality, preferences and personal needs. What do we mean? Have you always wanted a game room? Well, build one in the garage or in the spare bedroom. Is your hobby knitting? Let the decorations in the living room reflect that. Are you a bright, lovely, outgoing person? Well, there is probably a way for the colours you use on your walls to reflect that. You catch our drift, right?
Doing home improvements such as painting the walls, or even just rearranging the furniture will give you a sense of bonding with your property if you will. Once you are done with even the smallest of projects, you will probably feel much more attached to the house, because you’ve just made it a little bit more “yours”.
Table: Increase in property prices in London in the past years*
|London Borough||Average property price in GBP for 2009||Average property price in GBP for 2017 (April)||Percentage increase|
|Kensington and Chelsea||598,430||1,369,708||128.9|
|City of Westminster||502,387||1,033,617||105.7|
*note: the table reflects just the five top boroughs of London in which dramatic increases in property prices have occurred. There are places such as Havering, Camden, Tower Hamlets, Bexley and Bromley where a reversed trend – a decrease in prices – has been demonstrated.
Step 3: Sort out your family life
It is easy to talk about household improvement and maintenance, but the truth is that no matter how nice your house or apartment is, or how clean you keep it, you will never be happy in it unless you actually get along with the people you live in. This is particularly important in case you live with your partner, have kids and so on. Roommates can be changed relatively easy, but with family things get more complicated. The key to happy family life is communication. If there is a problem, do not wait for it to boil up – sit down and talk about it calmly. Through communication the proper solution will arise. Other ways to nurture a healthy relationship with your family is by doing things together – from eating at one time and place at least once a day to playing games or even doing the chores with one another. You will be surprised what a positive effect such simple things can actually have.
Step 4: Energy efficiency
Naturally, it is very important that you have a comfortable and nice home on the right price. We are not talking about rent or purchase money only, but rather the amount of cash you part with on a monthly basis so that you can pay your bills. You can easily start paying less for heating, electricity and water if you learn how to be more energy efficient and apply sustainable methods of keeping a house. Here are just a few tips (note that some will require professional help, as mentioned above, in order to turn into reality):
- Spend less water by turning off the tap while you are shaving and brushing your teeth. Showering with your partner is another pleasant and very efficient technique in that respect.
- Upgrade the insulation throughout your entire house. We are not talking about just the windows and outside walls, but the roof, floor and the interior walls as well. This will dramatically decrease the electric and heating bills.
- Install energy efficient light bulbs throughout your entire house. They might be a bit more expensive than the regular ones, but once you actually start saving money on electricity, you will notice that the investment is paying off pretty quickly.
- Learn to re-use – containers, shopping bags, glass bottles. In that way you will not only bring your household a step closer to sustainability, but you will be doing the environment much good.
Those are just a few basic examples. We are more than certain that you are going to find inspiration once you actually start taking those steps for even more ways to make your house and life in general better.