Home Projects | Urban Living
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Home Projects



Sheltering at home is likely causing you to stress-eat and/or -drink. You worry that before this over, you could audition for My 600 Pound Life! Or maybe you're doing the "KonMarie" organizing and de-fragging of your possessions to the point that you're offering to re-arrange your neighbors' toolsheds for free (BTW, what is Mario Kondo doing during her self-isolation?).

I've never seen so many well-tended yards this early in the spring as folks stay home and trim shrubs, plant gardens and xeriscape their property.

There are productive things you can do to your home that may or may not involve a trip to the hardware store. Not only will they help keep you sane, they'll refresh your living space and outlook on life. Plus, they will update your home in case you choose to put it on the market in the coming months when we're able to get out the house again. Here's what I suggest:


Pressure wash your exterior walls. You'll need a pressure attachment to your hose to clean your siding or bricks. Clean under the gutters and around the windows to get the dirt and cobwebs down from winter.

Ask a partner or roommate to hold your ladder while you clean out gutters from last fall's leaves.

Fix your fence/gate(s) or install that one you've been talking about for years (just make sure you put it on the right property line!).

Build a racoon-proof coop and get into urban chicken farming. IFA has a bazillion baby chicks of many types ready to come home and keep bugs out of your yard and leave you eggs for your breaky.

You may have cleaned out your garage twice by now, but maybe install shelving to store all the stuff that you packed up inside the house.


Update doorknobs, handles and drawer pulls. Brass is so 1990s, whereas brushed nickel finishes are in style. This is really inexpensive to do yourself, and it subtly changes your interior from old to new.

If you're brave enough, get a new toilet that's higher than the original one. Many folks are now installing bidets since the toilet paper shortage became a fact of life, but you may find they are on back order.

Update kitchen faucets and backsplashes. It's fun to use color. and this year the Pantone choice is a navy blue. Local tile stores such as home-grown company Tile for Less have massive choices for groovy backsplash ideas as well as easy-to-install click flooring if you're really motivated.

This is also a great time of the year to clean your windows inside and out. You'd be surprised what a home full of clear windows can do for your soul by bringing in light and sunshine!

And if you're still antsy and wearing circles in your carpet, see if your elderly homebound neighbor will let you clean her windows and yard as your good deed for the day!