With the departure of Summer and welcoming of Autumn, the party-season is now over and it is time to knuckle down and begin those home renovation projects that you have been putting off for the past 3 months. Home renovation projects can be tiring and expensive but also fun and rewarding! What renovation project do you want to engage in this Autumn?
With summer being too hot and busy, Winter too cold and gloomy and Spring set aside for 3 months of spring cleaning, Autumn is the best time to tackle those home DIY renovation projects and home maintenance chores before the freezing temperatures and constant rain sets in.
Clean out your roof guttering and pipes
As the leaves start to fall, there is no excuse that can prevent you from cleaning out your gutters. Gutters should be cleaned twice a year or even more if below large, deciduous trees. This is because if water is left stagnant in the gutter for a long period of time due to drain blockage, it can cause severe rotting of pipes. Before cleaning out your gutters, take a walk around your home, preferably during or after rainfall to check for leaks and blockages and get an idea of where your labour is needed most.
Set up your ladder with a wheelbarrow below and use a garden trawl to remove all the grime and muck lining your gutters. Use the trowel to push and scope the leaves in the direction away from the downpipe. It may be useful to rake your homes roof as well so that the next big downpour doesn’t wash all the debris into your freshly cleaned gutters. Make sure that you feel safe and sturdy when at height as a fall from as little as 1 meter can cause serious injury.
After clearing, flush your gutters with a hose and if the water doesn’t drain freely out through the downpipe, get down on ground level and use a piece of twisted wire to pull the debris out the bottom of the down pipe.
If you live in a really leafy area, invest in some stainless steel mesh gutter guards!
Fix up, paint or replace your property’s fences.
Did you know that the majority of arguments between neighbours revolve around shared fences. According to the Victoria ‘Fences Act 1968’ , neighbours are jointly responsible for the cost of construction and maintenance of fences. This being said, if YOU are wanting to replace your existing fence and your neighbor does not, it shall be done at your cost, as long as the current fence is adequate. If the current fence is not adequate meaning that it is broken, incomplete and not providing the security and boundary that a fence should, then it shall be replaced at joint cost between you and your neighbours. Talk to your neighbours about the fine details mentioned below to ensure peace and prevent any conflict down the track.
- how much you both want to spend
- height of the fence
- materials such as wood, stone, wire, brick or plants
- timeframe of fence removal and new fence construction
- who gets the ‘flat side’ of the fence
Render or repaint the exterior of your home
If your home exhibits a 70s brick façade, the quickest and easiest way to modernise and change the look of your property is to simply render it. Rendering is the process of filling in the gaps between the bricks and giving your home a smooth or textured finish. Stucco is a similar product that can be attached to your exterior façade as large boards. Bagging is similar again although much easier as a DIY project. Bagging wont give you the same, uniform smooth look but rather a more rustic adaptation that may suit your home design a whole lot more! Don’t skimp on surface preparation or a post-bagging paint job. The benefits of these 2 process’s will far outweight the extra cost in doing so, especially if looking to sell your home in the near future.
Do you have that one tricky wall within your home that creates a callous separation between living areas? Would you prefer an open-plan kitchen-lounge-dining area rather than 3 separate rooms?
Removing a wall can turn your home from gloomy to roomy however there are some highly necessary and ever important steps that need following before pulling out the sledge hammer.
First, contact your local council to obtain plans of your home if you don’t already have them. A builder needs to look at these to determine whether a wall is load-bearing or containing electrics. Once all necessary permits are lodged, they will need to be approved by the council before construction can take place. Depending on your wall type (plaster with wooden studs or brick) there may be quite some skill involved in removing them and often the flooring will need to be lifted. This may all sound off-putting but the value and function of your home will almost always be improved so don’t be put off by initial costs.
Upgrade your bathroom or kitchen
Nothing grabs a buyers attention more than a modern kitchen and clean bathroom. Even though this can be one of the cheapest areas to renovate, it can also be one of the most expensive depending on the work that needs to be done. If appliances need updating, walls need moving and piping needs upgrading then you are looking at spending > $10,000 however if it is all for aesthetics, upgrading your basin accessories and tapware may be all you need to do! Simple things like towel rails, kitchen mixers and accessories around your bathroom can be inexpensive to replace if you shop at the right place. This doesn’t mean to say you must cut back on quality. Online stores such as the Renovator Store sell high quality fittings and fixtures for your home for a fraction of retail price! How? Because they are online and simply don’t have the retail margin and do not waste money on brand prestige or aggressive marketing, therefor getting your product to you cheaper!
Re-stain and re-seal your deck
As the sun dries out your deck, the colour starts to fade and the grain will wash out causing your deck to look worn and tired. At least every 2 years, if not every year, you should spend a day giving your deck a little tender loving care. Before re-staining, your deck will need a good clean! An inexpensive way of cleaning your deck is to use Napisan. This contains Sodium Percarbonate which is the active ingredient in most expensive wood cleaning detergents. 2 cups of Napisan dissolved in a bucket of hot water plus a stiff bristled deck brush will do the trick. Once your deck has been scrubbed, consider using a wood brightener which is often in spray form and compels the wood grains to open up and accept more of the stain.
Now its staining time and there is no better way to apply the stain than to use a simple paint brush. It is better to apply less than more as too much stain can cause the wood to go brittle and crack. The tin of stain should advise a drying time. Once this is up, you’re done!
Install under floor heating
Under Floor Heating can be an expensive instalment however it can also be done for a fraction of the price if you choose to do so yourself. The Renovator Store sells Under Tile Heating DIY Kits which start at $399! With a touchscreen thermostat and all installation materials included, there is no reason why your bathroom, kitchen and tiled areas can’t be enhanced with the luxury of under tile heating!