By Erik J. Martin
The instantly hummable folk-rock classic “Turn! Turn! Turn!” by The Byrds reminds us that “there is a season…and a time to every purpose under heaven.”
That adage can certainly be applied to home improvement endeavors, many of which are best pursued at certain times of the year versus others. Springtime, for example, is a favorable season in which to tackle specific tasks, including overdue maintenance and repairs as well as upgrades that can improve your home’s look, comfort and resale value.
“Spring is a popular time for many home improvement projects for several reasons,” says Julio Arco, an architect and interior designer with Bark and Chase. “First, warmer weather and longer days are more cooperative for outdoor projects. Secondly, after a long winter, people are eager to be more active and tackle projects they have been putting off. And third, many receive tax refunds in the spring, providing additional financial resources for home improvements.”
Amy Fredericksen, a professional organizer in West Hartford, Connecticut, is simpatico with those sentiments.
“People are more motivated and excited to start many projects, get moving and get outside once again after the first glimpse of warm weather and sunshine hits,” she says. “Springtime is also a great period of the year in which to start booking service providers and contractors needed to do any renovations. Good companies will often get booked out months in advance, so if you’d like something done by summer, for example, spring is the time to get the ball rolling.”
Although rainy, windy and cooler conditions may prevail across March through May, “you can also expect many dry and sunny days which are ideal for construction,” suggests Alex Capozzolo, co-founder of Brotherly Love Real Estate. “In addition, the days start to get longer in the spring, giving you more natural light to get work done.”
Construction-heavy jobs that involve expansion, such as creating an addition or bump out, may be better suited to a different time of year when the weather is less of a factor.
“For example, wintertime is often a good period for certain construction projects, as homeowners spend more time indoors during the colder months,” Arco notes.
Angel Conlin, chief insurance officer for Chicago-based Kin Insurance, recommends prioritizing property insurance-related upkeep tasks at this time of year.
“Inspect and trim your trees, check and clean your gutters and take a walk around your property to spot cracks in the cement, driveway or sidewalk, missing shingles, loose steps or other areas that need fixing,” advises Conlin. “Check and replace your sump pump if needed, fix dripping faucets and running toilets, test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors and check and clean your chimney if you have one.”
This is also an ideal season for prepping your lawn for the growing season, deep cleaning your house, tidying up outdoor spaces, inspecting and cleaning your HVAC system, ensuring your ceiling fan blades are running counterclockwise for warmer weather ahead, weather-stripping your windows and doors, sealing holes where critters can get in your home and cleaning window wells, Conlin adds.
“Spring is a popular time to repaint your interiors and exteriors, too,” Capozzolo continues.
Likewise, outdoor living enhancements can be prioritized at this time of year. Consider creating a patio or deck, adding a pergola, gazebo, or other semi-enclosure, ponder planting a garden, building a fire pit, or putting in an above-ground pool if you have the space.
Before committing to a spring home improvement project, “consider your budget, the timing involved, and the potential impact on the home and surrounding area,” recommends Daniel Cabrera, president of Sell My House Fast in San Antonio. “It’s important to carefully research contractors and obtain multiple quotes to ensure the project is completed within budget and to the desired quality. Give thought, as well, to the potential impact of the project on your neighborhood, such as the noise and debris generated during construction.”