You may be thinking winter is completely the wrong time of year to be carrying out home improvements but there are definitely some you don’t need to wait until spring or summer for. Read on for our top 10 winter home improvements.
1. Block out those draughts!
This may not seem like a home improvement of the traditional sense, like a new kitchen or bathroom, but with the colder and windier weather setting in, winter is the perfect time to draught-proof your home, especially as you’ll be switching on your heating – the last thing you’ll want to be doing is letting that warmth escape!
Spend some time looking around your home for gaps where the hot air can escape and the cold air can come through. Pay special attention to the edges around your windows and doors and don’t forget your floorboards and skirting boards too – these can expand and move with everyday use and cracks can appear.
Once you’ve found the gaps, most of your windows and doors can be fitted with brush or wiper strips and most cracks in skirting boards and floorboards can be simply filled with flexible filler. For more help on how to draught-proof your home, read our draught-proofing guide.
2. A splash of paint
Maybe you haven’t painted since moving into your new home or your walls need freshening up a bit? Or…maybe a room or two could do with a whole new look? No matter what stage you are at, painting is a great job to get done during the winter months. The only thing you might want to be mindful of is airing out those paint fumes but cracking open a window slightly with the heating off for a day or so will help with this. Just make sure you shut the internal door to whatever room you have painted so the heating from the rest of your home doesn’t escape!
We love the sage colour of this feature wall and how it makes the headboard pop! A feature wall like this isn’t suited to just your lounge or dining room and if you’re making home improvements on a budget, adding a splash of paint to just one wall, whilst keeping the others more neutral, is one way of keeping costs down.
Also, how amazing would it be to have a view like that from your bedroom? If you have the budget, why not splash out on fixed glazing like this when you’re making over your bedroom to create an even more beautiful feature.
3. Lights, camera, action!
The correct lighting can transform the interior of your home. Especially when it comes to open plan living areas. There are, of course, a few things to consider including the style of your interior design and what type of lighting would suit this best. For example, you wouldn’t want to fit something like these colour LED lights in a more traditional period home…would you?
You should also consider where it is best to place lights especially if you are installing new rather than just replacing existing fittings. Spotlights can brighten up your chosen area but making sure you have the right number and installing them correctly isn’t the easiest of DIY tasks so you may want to consider professional help.
For those who are budget conscious, a simple but effective and budget-friendly swap is a new lampshade. You’ll be surprised how much a lighter lampshade can brighten up a room and how a darker one can funnel the light downward creating a spotlight effect.
It’s not just artificial lighting that should be on your home improvements list either. You should consider the sources of natural light and opening up your home with beautiful bifold doors like the ones in the image above will help you to achieve the perfect balance between natural and artificial lighting.
4. New flooring
Another way to completely change the look and feel of your home is to upgrade your flooring. You have a few options when it comes to this too, depending on your existing flooring.
The first step, whether you have carpet or wood flooring, is to give it a good deep clean. You’ll be surprised how much a professional clean can change the colour and condition of your existing carpet or wooden flooring. Depending on your wooden flooring, you could also look to sand it down and give it a new varnish, or get a professional to do it instead.
If you have wooden flooring and sanding isn’t an option or the deep clean hasn’t quite done the job, a new rug could help to transform not only the look but the feel too, as well as helping to keep your room feel warm. Although rugs are traditionally seen in living rooms like this one, don’t let this hold you back from adding them to others like your bedroom or even kitchen. The style of rug you choose may also help to give your room’s decor a much-needed change and it is a pretty cost-effective way to do so.
If you have a bigger budget, you could, of course, look to change your flooring completely and swapping from wood flooring to carpet and vice versa can change the style of a room so why not consider this before choosing to simply upgrade what you already have.
5. Fixtures and fittings
This is most definitely a budget-friendly and easy home improvement that you can carry out during the winter months. And no matter what room, we guarantee there will be a simple fixture or fitting that can be changed to help improve the look and feel.
Let’s start with your kitchen. A simple swap would be to change your kettle, toaster and other countertop appliances, along with your taps, to a different colour. It sounds like such a small change and one that won’t make much of a difference but don’t knock it until you try it – imagine how different this kitchen top would have looked with a silver kitchen tap…less luxurious for sure!
Now for your dining area. Whether it is a part of your kitchen or not, there are ways to change the fixtures and fittings to change the overall look. Take this rustic dining table and chairs, for instance. A more neutral splash of paint on those legs and a new style of dining chair, like an antique French, could make it look a lot more classic than its current rustic feel. Although that might not suit those aluminium bifold doors at the end but you see what we mean!
And by making smaller swaps or by painting your existing furniture, you’re not only saving money but helping the environment too.
This possibly sounds like the least interesting home improvement you can make during the winter months but it is also one that can be truly transformational. It also doesn’t have to be boring as grouting is now available in many more colours than before so you can say goodbye to that boring white that you have been so used to.
If you have a kitchen or bathroom with traditional white tiles and white grouting, make it feel more trendy with a darker grout such as black. Or, match your taps and kitchen countertop appliances with gold or copper grouting. Whatever colour you choose, remember that you’ll need to remove the old grouting first before adding the new.
7. Interior doors
The doors inside your home are just as important as your doors which connect to your home’s exterior and long gone are the traditional white wooden doors. A more recent trend is the cottage-style look and although we think these are fabulous and can add a real modern feel to any style of home, they can block out quite a lot of the natural light. Therefore, if your winter home improvements budget will allow it, why not try something different like these internal bifold doors.
They are still great at creating defined areas with your home but they also allow you to experience open plan living as and when you want to, too. And, if you would prefer to create more definition, you can opt for opaque glass instead whilst still benefiting from increased natural light and a blend of open plan and non-open plan living.
8. Exterior doors or windows
Not just for spring or summer, exterior doors and windows can be upgraded any time of the year. Whether you want to replace like for like or completely change the style, reputable and reliable windows and doors companies will be able to help you with this no matter the weather.
There are a few things to consider when you are thinking about changing your exterior doors and windows, including design, colour and material.
For patio doors:
- French can offer you a classic look and work especially well if you are limited on space
- Bifold doors offer a completely unobstructed view when fully open and can help to create a connected feel between the inside and outside of your home
- Sliding doors offer minimal sightlines and have a higher rate of glass, allowing natural light to flood into your home
Read more about each of these styles in our patio doors blogs.
or a more modern front door design…
Read all about our front door designs in our front door blogs.
The more European tilt and turn design…
The heritage – a perfect blend of modern and classic…
And, for areas where you don’t want opening windows, fixed glazing too.
Read more about our window styles in our windows blogs.
9. Insulation – keep your house warm!
Another way the heat can escape from your home is through your roof due to poor insulation and this is one of the most recommended home improvements for winter. The right insulation – when installed correctly – will help to prevent heat from passing through the ceiling, into the loft space and out via your roof. Instead, it will create a barrier and keep the heat in your home.
By keeping the heat in, you will also find you do not need to have your heating as high or maybe even switched on as often to keep your home warm. This in turn helps you to save money on your heating bills and keeps the planet a little happier.
10. Roof maintenance
Not only can heat escape through your roof but your roof can let cold air and rain (among other things) in if it is not properly maintained and cracks appear. Not one for the faint-hearted, it may be best to instruct a professional to climb the ladder and check over the condition of your roof. They’ll also be able to help you repair any issues that may have been causing leaks and dampness in your loft space.
We hope you have found this list of top 10 home improvements for winter useful. Why not check out our other home decor blogs for more home improvements inspiration including:
- How to create an eco-friendly home
- How to make your home cosy for autumn
- Open plan living; how to get it right