Close-up of someone painting wood white

Simple Home Improvements You Can Do While Sheltering in Place

Because of local governments’ shelter-in-place orders in response to COVID-19, many of us find ourselves spending more time in our homes than ever before. This means that in addition to getting used to working from home or filling up unusual free time, we are also surrounded by unfinished home improvement projects started long ago. 

Now’s the time to tackle that home improvement to-do list head-on or get started on some new and simple do-it-yourself (DIY) projects that will keep you busy and leave you satisfied.


Painting an entire room or simply adding a splash of paint to a door or trim can make a huge difference in the look of your house, and is also a great DIY project to do during quarantine. Painting is one of the easiest and most affordable tasks you can undertake while still making a strong impact.

Before you choose colors, keep in mind that certain shades will affect the general mood and look of your room. Painting a room a crispy white color or a pastel can make it feel spacious, clean, and calm. Bright colors can liven up a dreary, small space, while dark, rich, jewel-tone shades can create bold accent walls. 

Order a few different shades in sample sizes to try out in your home so you can see how different colors will look throughout the day and under varying light. Many paint companies will also have options on their website to upload a photo of the room in question and try out their shades virtually before you purchase. 

[Related: Important Tips for Millennial Homebuyers]

Landscape Your Yard

Whether you are looking to improve your home’s curb appeal and property value or you just want to create an outdoor escape from your everyday indoor routine, now is the perfect time to take on a landscaping project. Adding shrubbery, small trees, and flowerbeds to your yard is an easy way to spruce up your property and also a welcome project to distract you from having to stay home. Set up a few lawn chairs, a small table, and a barbecue and there you have it — the perfect outdoor oasis.

Planting and growing your own fruits, vegetables, or herbs is another gardening project that is simple to undertake — with delicious results. Even if you don’t have a lot of yard space, you can start up a container garden almost anywhere. Container gardening, or potted plant gardening, is an easy way to incorporate different produce and herbs in their own pots on windowsills or in a sunny spot on your back patio. 

[Related: Five Priceless Reasons to Save Up to Buy a Home vs. Renting]

Set Up a Home Office

Nowadays working from home is the norm, which is unfamiliar territory for a lot of us. If you don’t already have a home office, joining meetings, making phone calls, and working on your laptop can be difficult. Carving out a distraction-free space for you to focus on work and be productive is an essential element to working from home. 

If you already have an extra room, setting up a home office is simple, but certain spaces call for creativity. Find extra space in a corner of your dining room or basement, a large closet, or even under a staircase to set up shop. You can always set up room dividers, shelving units, or curtains to separate your workspace from the rest of your living area. 

Since you’ll be spending a lot of time in your new home office, invest in a comfortable chair, a spacious desk, and proper lighting. Don’t forget to decorate! Adding houseplants and hanging art can transform your home office from drab to inspirational and keep you motivated.

Give Your Furniture a Facelift

Now’s the time to dust off that unused furniture sitting in your garage or basement. Cleaning old chairs, painting boring wooden tables, or upholstering tired-looking couches are all fairly simple projects that will give your furniture new life. Adding a few throw pillows or new slipcovers to your living room sofa can transform the room, and placing some candles or flowers on top of a newly polished side table can brighten up any household. 

Plan Your Future Remodel

Although now isn’t the best time to take on any large remodel projects, you can still plan. Use this time to make lists of everything you’d like to improve in your home and organize it from most important to least. Start researching local businesses or companies that can help you achieve these tasks after quarantine, and figure out what you need to do in the meantime to prepare, such as cleaning, sorting through clutter and donating, making sketches, or choosing design elements.

Maybe taking on these home improvement projects is part of your family’s longer-term plan to increase your property value and begin the process of selling your home to purchase a new one. In that case, Seattle Mortgage Planners is ready to help you every step of the way. Contact us today for a consultation!

Featured image via Pixabay

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