Every so often we may look at ourselves in the mirror and decide it’s time for a makeover. Be it going for a new hairstyle or buying a new outfit; a little change can bring about a fresh spring in our step. The same can be true of where we live. Home is where we spend much of our time, but sometimes it can look a little worn down, dull and in need of some work itself. Most of us spend a lot of time working on the interior of our homes. New furnishings and appliances, as well as fresh coats of paint or wallpaper, help make the house a home of which you can be proud.
It is the outside of our home that gets the least work done to it. This is surprising because the exterior is the first thing people see when they come to visit, and you probably want to give a good impression when they do. Perhaps you are envious of your neighbors with their immaculately mown lawns, bowing in shame when they look over your fence and see the mess that used to be your garden. So perhaps now is the right time to get to work on the outside, and give it a brand new makeover.
Has your cat been missing for days? Is your child mourning the loss of his bike? Maybe both are lost in the overgrown shambles that used to be your garden. It it is quickly becoming a health and safety hazard with twisting brambles and creeping vines, now is the time to get your hands dirty and delve into this artificial jungle. Put on some old clothes, take a deep breath and find the best equipment to help you for the job.
If your garden is badly out of shape, your lawn mower will not be able to cut it. It is possible to hire special equipment from your local lawn company, but that could prove to be expensive. So what should you do?
Begin at the top and use a strimmer to remove the first layers of grass. Continue by going over each area of grass until it becomes a decent length to mow. Occasionally, grass will get clogged up in the tool, so you will need to remove any blockages along the way. With time, your garden will look less like Tarzan’s playground and more like the lawn you remember. Of course, should your cat be wandering through the undergrowth prowling its latest prey, make careful use of the strimmer, so you don’t decapitate the poor thing!
Before mowing the lawn, get to work on those pesky weeds. You need to pull them from the root; otherwise, they will keep growing back and be a constant source of worry for your beautiful garden. There is a lot of weedkiller on the market that will finish them off for good, alternatively covering them in hot, boiling water will do the job just as well.
Once done, take a break. You deserve it, so have a cup of tea and put your feet up for the day. There is no need to over exert yourself, no matter your will power. Return the next day, and with the grass in a manageable state, it is now time to mow the lawn. Your child will find his football, you will find a sense of satisfaction, and the garden will look good enough to be able to relax in. That doesn’t mean your work is over, as there is always more that could be done. After all, maybe it is time your neighbor was the envious one.
Why not add color to your garden. There are various ways you could do this, but the most obvious one is with flowers. If your garden was a mess, you probably didn’t get around to planting any seeds ahead of the season. No matter, buy a wooden planter and fill them with whatever plants and flowers take your fancy. Planters can be stood on the lawn or even raised on the fence or the walls of your house, whatever is convenient for you. Instead of making a new purchase you could always dig out those plant pots you always swore you would use one day, enlist your children and ask them to paint the pots in a bright color. Whether you add plants to them, or just leave them as they are, your garden will look better for it.
Another way of making your garden more attractive is to add lighting, perfect for those warm summer nights when you want to sit outside. One good example, and easy to set up are solar powered lights. Simply place them in an area where they are guaranteed to attract the sun, and as dusk falls they will begin to work illuminating your garden. Try assorted color lights, and fashion them into an interesting pattern for added creativity.
You don’t want to overfill your lawn, but a few accessories will give your garden space a little more character and interest. There are numerous things you could consider buying. For example, if comfort is your thing, invest in some new lawn chairs. A barbecue is always handy for when you fancy eating outside or for an organized social event, such as for a birthday party. Add a few garden gnomes here and there, or a water feature such as a bird bath. Your children will thank you too if you add a few play things, a swing ball or a giant wooden game of Jenga, for example. Pretty soon, your garden will be the fun and happening place you always wanted it to be.
When your garden is up to scratch, think of the surrounding area. If your fence is old and faded, why not add some to color to it. You will need to sand it down first and give it an undercoat. When that is done, paint it in traditional brown or white, or brighten it up considerably with a red or a yellow. While you have the paint to hand, keep going. If you have a standing mailbox, give that a once over, and don’t forget the garden gate too.
So your lawn is near perfection, and the mailman has just been dazzled by your lovely fence. But what about the walkway up to your house? Now is the time to work on your drive, or pathway. Give it a good wash down with water and soap, or if the dirt is ingrained, hire a steam cleaner for a more thorough clean. Then, work on your patio, declutter it from all the toys, recycling bags and that half eaten mouse your cat delivered to you a few days earlier.
Give yourself a pat on the back, your garden and driveway both look exceptional. However, the hard work is not over yet, so after a little break, it is time to step out of your front door and continue to the outside of the house.
The welcome area should be just that, welcoming! Invest in a new doormat if the one you have is looking filthy and shabby. If the front door is rusty and squeaks every time you open it, give it a squirt of oil. In fact, your door is a great place to begin on the surface of your home. A new door knocker and house number may give it a new lease of life, as well as a fresh lick of paint, too. Another way of making the entrance attractive is to hang plants around the door, and a porch light, such as a lantern, or a light with sensors to guide you home in the dark.
A simple paint brush is not going to be enough for the walls of the house, so after remembering to close all the windows, give them a good power wash to remove any dirt, and use something like the Wagner 0518080 control spray max hvlp sprayer, which is useful for covering long distances of your wall at a quick pace. Whether you stick with a traditional white color, something to match your brickwork, or something more vibrant and original, your house will almost look brand new.
Finally, it is time to work on the most important part of the house, your roof. However, depending on your DIY prowess, and courage for heights, it may be better to hire an expert to work on this area for you. With the ever changing weather, your roof is liable to become damaged or damp, so it may be time to replace those loose or missing tiles. The guttering may be blocked with leaves and other debris, so that will need to be unblocked. A good clean with a power wash will be helpful too, once the leaks have been repaired first, of course.
Within time, your house will be the envy of all who see it, and it will make you feel good, too!