(ARA) -- Now, while the winter is still around, is the best time for homeowners to get a jump start on planning and prepping for their spring and summer home and garden projects; so when the weather really does warm up, it takes little effort to get the projects underway. In addition to fine-tuning home improvement and gardening plans, it also is a good idea to make certain the required tools are in tip-top shape, so projects are not delayed.
Here are some ways to prepare for the spring and summer seasons:
- Plans -
Sketch out garden plans, and pick plants that can be purchased or grown from seed. Plans don't need to be drawn to scale, but they'll provide great background information for a shopping list. Research how early seedlings should be started, so they'll be ready for transplant when the time arrives.
Also create plans for home projects that need to be accomplished. The depth of those plans depends on the project's complexity. Make certain all permits are in order, if required by the community. If a contractor is needed, make sure a formal agreement and timeline is in place.
- Lawn tools -
Check pruning shears for sharp blades - and either sharpen or replace them if they don't easily cut through a small stem of plant material. Also, review lawn mower blades. Check oil, gasoline and starters on all gardening machinery to ensure they'll run when needed.
- House tools -
A review of all home tools helps determine if any new purchases are needed. This is the perfect time to purchase missing tools, add new blades to saws or replenish the sandpaper stash - eliminating wasted time running back and forth to the store.
- Hand tools -
A little care can go a long way in keeping your hands and feet - the most valuable tools found in every household - in good shape after the long, dry winter months. These tools are vital to accomplishing everything on those garden and home project lists, and they are often forgotten. Start every project with healthy hands, and keep them that way throughout the entire season of projects.
- Materials -
As the project season gets closer, start purchasing the materials needed ahead of time. This helps spread out the cost, and can give you an idea of how much time and effort the project may take. Get started matching colors, finding the perfect accessories and price-comparing between different suppliers to help save money.
For homeowners who haven't experienced the warm-weather-project itch yet, it's still a good idea to start thinking about the to-do lists to be prepared when the season arrives.