Dog Days of Summer

A Great Time for Home Improvements

Home Improvments ToolsThe onset of summer brings about a break from the year-round monotony in all things – kids get to play freely without stringent school routines and moms bask in the freedom of not having to make lunches and scoot sleepy kids out of the house. The warmer weather brings on a renewed sense of free will, which leads many to search for new and different ways to spend their time.

Aside from vacations and days trips, the summer is great time to make changes to your home. Improvements made in the summer – whether large or small – can yield you much enjoyment during these languid days of sunlight and warm weather. Are you hoping to create a luxurious spot to enjoy evening barbecues or are you interested in building that square foot vegetable garden you’ve been dreaming about? Hoping to paint a room or rather change out rusty bathroom fixtures?

Whether you’re hoping to tackle a few weekend upgrades or one larger weeks-long project, we encourage you to delve into it while the weather is warm and dry.

Here are a few summer home improvements ideas that won’t break the bank but will increase your enjoyment ten-fold. So, get out there and sweat a little, it’s worth it for all you’ll gain in the enjoyment (and value) of your home.

Bench Around a Tree1. Build a deck or a tree bench: Been looking for a cool place to lounge? Try building a tree bench around a tree in your front or back yard. This cool spot that circles a tree will provide you with a cozy, natural spot throughout the summer. Or are you considering a larger spot to entertain or sit and cool down in the afternoon? Consider building a deck off the back of your property or even a porch in the front. Any hardware store can provide you with step-by-step plans. Building a deck takes only a few basic tools, some patience and precise instructions.

2. Create an Outdoor Kitchen: No matter your budget, there are several ways to designate an outdoor spot for gathering and grilling outdoors. Summer is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy the fresh air. You can begin your outdoor escape by first finding the right grill. Next, determine your counter space – consider tile, stone or even concrete. Have room to eat – connected to your kitchen in the form of a bar or an unattached patio set – just make sure you have a spot to eat so no one crowds the cook!. Lighting and shelter are next and then you can add on from there – want a refrigerator, a sink or a cozy hearth to roast a S’mores dessert? By adding an outdoor kitchen, no matter the size, you are increasing the value of your home tremendously, as in the mid-Peninsula, you can essentially grill outside nine months of the year.

3. Landscape the yard: There’s no time like summer to really get your hands dirty. You can take out that brown sod and focus on some drought-resistant plants for your home, creating a modern feel with a modern price. With water rates going up and our current California drought, creating a garden that maintains or increases the curb appeal of your property is a great use of your time and money.

4. Upgrade the bathrooms: Believe it or not, you can change the entire look of a bathroom with just a coat of paint and some new fixtures. Change out that rusty sink, paint the walls and invest in a new, modern and water-efficient toilet. Feel like delving in a bit deeper? Consider new flooring and a new vanity? You can find some pretty impressive (and cost-effective) materials at any Home Depot or Lowe’s store. A Do It Yourself makeover of a bathroom not only will significantly increase your home’s value, but will also give you a taste of how aggressive you want to go with your next DIY project.

5. Light it up: Consider enhancing your home’s nighttime lighting. Purchase some new outdoor lights for the house and maybe solar walkway lights. Line your driveway, fence and other prominent entrances or features around your yard. In addition to increasing curb appeal, this improvement will add safety and security as well.

6. Remove dry-rotted trim: The best time to remove dry rot is in the dog days of summer. Dry, warm weather makes this job easy and replacing rotted trim will definitely spruce up your home’s overall look.