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Simple Home Exterior Updates That Make a Big Difference

Most homeowners save their home improvement budget for the interior of their house. They paint their
living room or finally get new carpet in the basement. After all, they spend most of their time indoors.

However, years of wear and tear can leave your home exterior looking dirty and dated. You may think
exterior updates require too much energy, but small, simple updates can make a big difference.

Here are some exterior updates that can make a big aesthetic impact for your home.

Clean Up

Start your home improvement with a cleanup. Simple maintenance can amp your home’s curb appeal at nearly
no cost to you. You can power-wash the exterior or put fresh mulch in your flowerbeds. You may also want to
clean up the weed area near your driveway. 

Simple cleanup projects will help your home look more fresh and new. These projects can be done in an
afternoon, but they create an instant impact.

Revamp the Landscaping

How well you keep up your yard heavily influences the aesthetics of your house’s exterior. Before you
decide to update paint or siding, look around your yard. A house with a dirty porch or weeds in the cracks of
the sidewalk looks worn and old. Trim the grass and rake the fallen leaves. Find a secluded area for your
garbage cans.

Then look at your home from the road and create a landscape design. If your budget permits, you may want
to redo the walkway to your porch or add shrubs along the front of your home.

Try to create a balance of plants and lawn. Too much sod makes a yard look bland. You can create a smooth
transition to your house with plants that slowly get taller. This design helps unify the landscape and the
home.

Update the Siding

Small exterior updates will only last so long. Every few years you may need to take on a bigger project. A
high-impact exterior update you can undertake is to replace your siding. Your siding plays a huge role in
your home’s exterior look as well as your home’s energy costs.

Make sure you invest in new, high-quality siding. You don’t want to skimp on the price now and have to
redo your siding again in a few years.

Updating the siding will also save you from having to repaint your home every few years. Homeowners often
encounter complications like rotted wood when they repaint older homes. Choosing new siding allows you to
start over with a durable material that gives your home a fresh look.

Choose a siding color that other homeowners will like in case you decide to sell your home. Also keep
simplicity and consistency in mind as you decide on the color scheme. Most designers recommend sticking with
just two or three colors for your home’s exterior. If you choose to use three colors, make sure the accent
color doesn’t overwhelm the trim and siding colors.

Polish the Details

Once you tackle the large projects for your home, polish the smaller portions. Small details can add style
and color to your home’s exterior.

Here are some ideas for details on your home you may want to update:

  • Front door
  • House numbers
  • Mounted mailboxes
  • Porch lights
  • Potted plants
  • Shutters
  • Trim

If you decide to paint these details, consider using the same color for each accent. For example, use the
same color for the front door, shutters, and garage door to create a cohesive result. Using consistent colors
draws attention to your home’s best exterior features.

Updating your home doesn’t have to cost thousands of dollars or take years to complete. Create a list of
what you would like to update, and then save money towards each of those projects. Consult with a home
exterior expert when you’re ready to make the updates. 

5 Home Improvement Goals for The New Year

Every January, you carefully consider what you would like to improve on or do differently in the upcoming year. Maybe you’ll stop biting your nails. Perhaps you’ll visit another country. Or maybe you want to perfect your downward dog pose.

But remember that you don’t have to save all your best goals for New Year’s Day. Each day is a new opportunity to grow, learn and develop. Additionally, you don’t have to limit your resolutions to bettering yourself. You could extend your desire to change to improving the environment around you.

As you take a good hard look at what you want to fix this year, consider making the following home improvement goals. These resolutions not only improve your home’s resale value, but they help the environment, too.

1. Cut The Clutter

Psychologists agree that clutter stimulates the senses. It distracts us from our priorities, and it makes relaxation difficult. This year, you can save yourself a great deal of stress when you cut the clutter in your home.

Start by selling, donating, or throwing away unused clothes in your closet. Then gradually work your way to the outside of your home by pulling the weeds, trimming the trees, and mowing the lawn. When you feel ready, move to the garage and organize the tools, boxes, and equipment you have stashed on the shelves. The more clutter you clear, the better you’ll feel.

2. Improve Security

No matter if you live in the big city or a small town, your home can become a target for thieves and vandals. Although you may have the habit of locking your doors at night, the locks won’t do you much good if you have an old door attached to a weakened frame.

To improve security this year, hire a professional to replace your entry doors with solid steel options and impact-resistant glass. If you want to take your efforts a step further, install wireless cameras near your doors and windows to record and alert you to any suspicious activity.

Once you upgrade your security, don’t forget to contact your insurance provider. Many companies offer lower premiums to homeowners with extra security features.

3. Lower Utility Bills

Your air conditioner works hard during the summer to ensure you stay cool and comfortable. But every time you turn down the thermostat, you lose a significant portion of that cold air through your windows, doors, plumbing vents and recessed lights.

If you want to save money on air conditioning, have a professional inspect your home for air leaks and seal the gaps as needed. Replace windows with Energy Star-rated options, and consider installing extra insulation and ventilation to improve your home’s energy efficiency.

4. Amp the Curb Appeal

Your home has one chance to make a good first impression. What visitors see at a glance affects your home’s overall resale value.

If you plan to sell your home in the near future, you can take steps to boost your curb appeal. Cleaning, repairing, and replacing the siding can make your home look like new. And planting a few flowers in the garden can also give your home a cozier, more charming appearance.

For more ways to boost your home’s curb appeal, check out our earlier blog post.

5. Go Green

As you improve your doors, windows, siding, and insulation, you significantly reduce your carbon footprint. But you can make your home even more environmentally friendly this year.

To start, make a goal to gradually replace burnt-out incandescent bulbs with fluorescent light bulbs, which last longer and use less energy. Next, invest in a programmable or smart thermostat to better control your heating and cooling usage. Finally, upgrade your water heater, refrigerator, dishwasher or other large appliance. Newer, Energy Star appliances drive down energy costs and function more efficiently than older models.

These five home improvement goals should give you a good start for the new year. And with a little creativity, you can find even more ways to improve your home and your life.

Should You Install a Walk-in Tub? Answer These 4 Questions to Find Out

After a long day, few activities feel as relaxing or rejuvenating as a long soak in the bathtub. But plenty of standard bathtubs are too shallow, slippery, or small to enjoy properly.

One common solution for an undersized tub is to install a walk-in model. These large tubs typically feature a hinged door, similar to walk-in showers. But walk-in tubs also boast large capacities, permanent seating, and sometimes even jets or other special features. These characteristics optimize the way you enjoy the therapeutic benefits of hot water and a bubble bath.

Many homeowners find that a walk-in tub sounds great, but they don’t know if such a big bathroom appliance will suit their needs or home. In this blog, we make the decision process simple. Just answer the four questions below to determine whether or not a walk-in bath represents a worthwhile investment for your home.

1. Does Using Your Current Tub Feel Unsafe?

The most obvious reason to upgrade to a walk-in tub is if you or another member of your family cannot bathe safely in the current bathtub. Walkin tubs tend to have the most benefit for individuals with one or more of the following health concerns:

  • Debilitating chronic pain or injury
  • Mobility issues
  • Old age

If you’re unable to enjoy a soak without some aid, you may benefit from a walk-in tub since these models often come equipped with handrail, seats, and textured surfaces to prevent falls.

2. Does Your Bathroom Have Adequate Dimensions?

While each walk-in unit differs from its counterparts, most tubs have similar dimensions. The average tub has the following sizing characteristics:

  • Length of approximately 60 inches
  • Walls of at least three feet long
  • Width of 26 to 32 inches

If your bathroom won’t quite accommodate this size tub, your supplier may have an extension kit to fit the space.

But you might be surprised at the manageable size of most walk-ins-plenty of models can smoothly replace a standard tub without a major renovation.

3. Do You Have an Efficient Plumbing System?

Perhaps one of the drawbacks of a walk-in tub is that the bather typically has to remain inside while the bath fills and drains. If you have a slow faucet, it could pose a profoundly uncomfortable scenario.

Before you install a walk-in, you’ll want a plumber to evaluate the bathroom system. Additionally, opt for a fast-fill fixture and maintain the drain to ensure short fill and empty times.

4. Do You Need Advanced Water Therapy Often?

Hydrotherapy has many benefits, from reduced pain to enhanced mood. Many individuals opt for hydrotherapy to help them recover from surgery or injury, age gracefully, and manage chronic joint or muscle pain.

Unless you have a Jacuzzi, a walk-in tub offers your best option for regular water therapy at home. Just be sure to look for a model with both air and water jets when you choose a tub. Air jets alone can feel perfectly pleasant, but they do not provide enough pressure to qualify as hydrotherapy.

If you answered yes to most or all of our questions, a walk-in tub may be a great investment for you. Ready to install your new bathtub? Reach out to a supplier to find out more about specific models. Prepare your bathroom’s dimensions so you can rule out models that have too-large of a capacity at your first consultation.

Still not sure how you feel about a nontraditional tub? Consider talking to a bathroom fixture supplier or installation contractor. These experts can evaluate your specific situation and make recommendations tailored to your home and family.

For more information on renovating and improving your home for safety, efficiency, and comfort, read our other blog posts.

We serve West Florida &
Surrounding Areas

Morgan Exteriors, Inc. is a home remodeling company that services most of Tampa Bay Area. We are general contractors, however, we specialize in what we know and do best - Energy Efficient Replacement Windows, Doors, Solid-core Siding, Eaves and overhangs, and most exterior improvements.

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Morgan Exteriors

5122 W. Knox Street. Tampa, FL 33634

Tel: 813-931-4663 or 727-502-5300

Morgan Exteriors - Lutz Location

15915 N Florida Ave, Lutz, FL 33549

Morgan Exteriors - Orlando Location

1966 West New Hampshire St, Orlando, FL 32804

Tel: 407-730-7443