The New Year is a great time to take stock of where you are with your Central Valley home and where you want to take it, whether you’ve just moved in or have been living there awhile. You can take care of stuff that you may not have time for during the rest of the year. Here are a few things that you may want to do this month before the rest of the year catches up with you.
Get rid of Christmas.
As much as you may enjoy the holiday season, its decor has to come down now. Carefully put away the tinsel, wreaths, and garlands for use next year. Wrap your Christmas lights around a long and stiff piece of cardboard, so they don’t tangle when you need them. If you have any decorations that are questionable, such as an animated figure that is on its last legs, get rid of them now so they doesn’t occupy valuable storage space. You can always buy replacements come December.
Reduce the clutter.
It’s fun to receive all the presents from friends and relatives. But unless it’s really something you can use right away, these gifts tend to go into storage. Why not get rid of them now to declutter the home? Return it to the store if you have a gift receipt, make a bit of needed cash by selling it on eBay, or give it to charity. If you do want to keep a gift, get rid of an older item in its place. This process ensures that you don’t increase the amount of clutter in your house.
The point of insurance is to replace stuff that’s stolen or destroyed by disasters. But only if you can provide evidence of ownership. So take out your smartphone, digital camera, or GoPro and start getting shots of your possessions. Take views from all sides and include such details as manufacturer, model number, and receipts, if you have them. Then keep copies of your inventory in different places such as at home, at work, or with a trusted friend.
Organize your files.
Go into your paperwork files and put all last year’s documents, letters, and bills into a separate archive box that’s marked for 2015. This leaves you room in your filing cabinet for this year’s paperwork. If your smartphone is full of photos and your computer stuffed with documents, now is a good time to transfer those digital files to a separate folder or storage device, so you can make more room in your primary device.
Negotiate your contracts.
The New Year is when you start receiving offers to switch services such as cell phones, cable, and Internet. Even if you don’t want to change, you can use those ads to your advantage by calling your current service provider. Ask for the Customer Retention Department and then tell them that you’ve received a better deal and are thinking of switching. Given that the market for new customers is so competitive, your service provider will most likely offer concessions just to keep your business.
Stock up on sales.
You already know that January is when Christmas merchandise goes on sale. But other products also go on clearance and are marked down for the month, making it a good time to stock up. These include furniture, home appliances, rugs, bed and bath linens, computers, and electronics. Winter clothing starts going on sale this month as well.
Plan your garden.
Our recent cold spell may have prevented you from taking advantage of Southern California’s all-season planting weather. But if the back yard of your new home is still barren, now is the time to start planning what to do with your outdoor spaces. Are we destined for more drought, which demands a low-water garden, or will El Nino finally bring rain and a chance to plant that rose garden you always wanted? Why not plan for both situations to take advantage of whatever the spring brings?
If you want to know more about taking advantage of your new home or want to tour our developments, please contact us.