Winter is actually a great time of year for renovations; since spring and summer are the most popular time for reno’s the age-old law of supply and demand makes it a practical choice. Contractors have more availability in the winter, along with tradespeople, making scheduling less of an issue than in the summer. Building permits are also quicker to obtain during winter, especially here in London.

The following is a list of renovations that are great to complete in the winter. These renovations will not only make you more comfortable in your home but increase the resale value of your house too.

  1. UPGRADE YOUR HOME ENERGY EFFICIENCY

This is a great job to take on during the winter, especially since you’ll start saving on utilities right away. A home energy audit from an energy professional here in London is the best way to start, they can help you find areas in the home that need improvements. Be sure to check online for current rebates first.

Improvements to your energy efficiency may include:

  • Adding insulation to your walls, ceiling, or attic. This can be a pricey undertaking but the savings you’ll see from the heat retention make it well worth the time and expense.
  • Upgrading your furnace or central air to a more efficient model.
  • Updating the light fixtures throughout your home to make use of LED lighting.
  • Finding drafts around windows, doors, and electrical switches or plugs. Caulking or insulating foam are excellent permanent options, while weatherstripping is a great temporary solution.

Check out this article for more inspiration to make your home energy effiecient.

  1. REMODEL YOUR CLOSET

Clutter just seems to happen in closets. The reality is, when we own too much, the excess ends up there. After clearing out the closet, and donating/trashing what you don’t need, take a look at the space. How can you make your closet work for you? If there’s a lack of space (which most closets have) then a smart storage system will help.

Professionals are available to take on designing and building closet systems. There are also a variety of shelves, drawers, and more at the big box stores; intended for the consumer to install, saving you a lot of money. Finding inspiration online is part of the fun.

Is it possible to extend the closet space? The Canadian Home Builders Association did a survey of 3,000 homeowners, determining a walk-in closet is the feature they want the most when house hunting.

  1. FINISH THE BASEMENT

It’s estimated that finishing your basement will see a 70-80% return on your investment. I’m sure you’ve been dreaming about what to do with this space… The kids would love a big playroom, a small gym where you can do yoga and lift weights. Perhaps a spare bedroom with an extra bathroom?

As mentioned earlier, contractors, tradespeople, and permits are much more readily available in the winter. Having them onboard during the renovation will take away a lot of stress from the family.

The top additions London homeowners look for in a basement reno are:

  • An extra bathroom
  • Electric fireplace
  • Entertainment unit
  • Wet bar
  • A games room or playroom
  1. Kitchen Countertops

Replacing the counters in the kitchen will have a substantial impact on the appearance of your kitchen and the value of your home.

Most big box stores offer laminate counters available in usually 5ft and 8ft sections. This can be an easy job to do yourself, but if you have a corner to contend with then hiring a professional is your best bet. They can ensure the corner angles are cut precisely and take care of the seam as well. You’ll also want to hire a contractor if you’re using natural stone, fortunately, their going rate is usually lower in the winter.

  1. THE LAUNDRY ROOM

Laundry rooms are on-trend right now, making them just as important as bathroom and kitchen updates.

Similar to closets, laundry rooms tend to be a catch-all for extra items from every room around the house. Fortunately, when it comes to renovating the laundry room, you can get away with doing more for less. Often a fresh coat of paint and some shelves are all you need. If it’s currently bare concrete then this is a great small space to try your hand at tiling or laying down some laminate. The expense is often worth it because laundry rooms offer a great return on investment these days.