Five Ways to Refresh Your Home’s Exterior

Winter can take a toll on your house. Here are some simple steps from Beryn Hammil, a San Francisco Bay Area designer, on how to spruce up the outside of your home.
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Consider doing your exterior home projects in the late afternoon or early evening when pollen levels may be lower. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America also recommends wearing a face mask to reduce your exposure to allergens.

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  1. Take a Good Look

    Look at your house objectively. If you see weeds, kids’ toys and dead grass, then that’s where you should start. If what you see includes peeling paint, torn screens, etc., then you have bigger projects on your hands.

  2. Start with the Easy Stuff…

    Start with small things that can be done in an afternoon. If it’s easy, recruit the kids; it teaches them to take pride in their home. Work on manageable projects first.

  3. …Then Tackle the Bigger Projects

    Devote some time to ensuring that you do the job properly. For paint and other simple repairs, your local hardware store should be able to help. For more intense projects like electrical work, be sure to hire a licensed professional.

  4. Consider Windows

    If Venetian blinds have broken slats, replace them, and if curtain linings are torn or faded, replace them. Simply washing windows, inside and out, can make a tremendous difference.

  5. Don’t Forget the Little Things

    Fresh flowers in pots on your front steps or along the walkway are always inviting. A new mailbox can add something special without much effort. Remember to sweep cobwebs off the outside of your house, which will keep it looking fresh and well maintained.

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From Drab to Fab: Easy Furniture Makeovers

Looking to breathe new life into your home? Make over your furniture for just a few dollars, with some tips and tricks from interior stylist Dean Vanderslice.
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Work on the exterior of your home at midday to avoid allergens.

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Work on the exterior of your home at midday to avoid allergens.
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Fiction
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Work on exterior home projects in the late afternoon or early evening to avoid peak allergen levels.
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If you have allergies, you should vacuum your mattress.

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If you have allergies, you should vacuum your mattress.
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Fact
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Vacuuming your mattress often can help get rid of dust mites.
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Wearing a hat reduces your exposure to DIY allergy triggers.

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Wearing a hat reduces your exposure to DIY allergy triggers.
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Fiction
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Wearing a mask and goggles limits your exposure to allergens during DIY activities.
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If you have allergies it's important to enclose your workspace when working on DIY projects.

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If you have allergies it's important to enclose your workspace when working on DIY projects.
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You can reduce the spread of allergens by isolating your work area.
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