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Home Inspections in Oakland County MI & Surrounding areas

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January 2022 Newsletter

Happy New Year from Sterling Home Services! We hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. As the cold weather settles in, spending time indoors can raise awareness of the state of our homes. The month of January is associated with new beginnings, and the same can be said for new home projects! Let’s talk about setting some home improvement goals in this month’s newsletter. Also, we can’t forget that January is Radon Action Month; we’ll remind you what it is and how to prevent it from impacting your health. Let’s kick off the new year on a high note!
New Year’s Resolutions for Homeowners
While exercising more, eating healthier, and getting finances under control are popular New Year’s resolutions, a lot of people forget to include home improvement as an option. From small tasks like organizing a junk drawer to more costly goals like getting new couches to even bigger projects like adding a sprinkling system, setting goals early is a proven way to help achieve even the loftiest dreams. If you’re in need of some inspiration, consider these 5 resolution ideas!
1. Declutter and organize your home.
Do you sometimes feel like you don't have enough room? What if the problem is that you’re holding onto too much stuff? Or that your stuff isn't organized properly? A clean and organized space to call home often sets us up for success in other areas of our lives. Take some time to “Marie Kondo” your space and let go of any baggage you don’t need to bring with you into the new year. Plus, it will be easier to stay organized as time goes on if every item has a home!
2. Reduce your energy consumption.
Energy bills can be super expensive depending on where you live! A good goal for this year is to find small ways to reduce your energy consumption without sacrificing comfort. Switching to LED light bulbs saves a lot of energy in the long run, and you don’t have to buy them as frequently. They even have smart bulbs that you can change the color of right from an app on your phone! Or go for a smart thermostat that adjusts the temperature of your home at just the right times to save on heating or cooling and take advantage of any incentives offered by your energy provider.
3. Get a better rate on your home insurance.
Most homeowners couldn’t tell you right away how much they spend on home insurance. A surprising amount would even say that they haven’t shopped for home insurance in years! If it’s been a while since you’ve shopped around for coverage, request some quotes to see what’s out there. It’s also a good idea to make sure you have the coverage you need on your current policy, especially if you’re in a disaster-prone area.
4. Make an emergency kit.
If there’s anything we’ve all learned in the last 2 years, it’s that a situation can change at the drop of a hat. Between wild weather and a global pandemic, many of us found ourselves trapped in our homes at some point or another. Were you prepared? Or did you wish you had things like food and water, flashlights, and first aid supplies stockpiled? While it’s important not to go overboard (leave some TP for the rest of the neighborhood!) it’s smart to keep at least 3 days’ worth of supplies on hand.
5. Plan your upgrades!
It feels like there’s always a million things to do around the house, both inside and out! If your home is feeling a bit dated or you have a bunch of half-finished projects staring you in the face, make it a New Year’s resolution to complete at least one home-improvement project. Even if you’re not a DIYer or don’t have a lot of money to invest, there are a ton of easy, inexpensive ways to update a house. And, the earlier you set goals, the easier it is to plan for how best to achieve them! From painting your front door to refinishing a deck, home improvement can be as easy as you want it to be!
January is National Radon Action Month
Radon gas is a serious health risk, causing around 21,000 deaths each year. Only smoking causes more lung cancer deaths. To help reduce those numbers, the EPA and U.S. Surgeon General designates January as National Radon Action Month each year to raise awareness of the dangers and educate on testing and reducing radon exposure.
So, what is radon? Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas released from rock, soil, and water. It is found in new and old homes, well-sealed and drafty homes, and in homes with or without a basement. You can’t see, smell, or taste this colorless, odorless, and invisible gas; the only way to know if your home has radon is to test for it! 
Here are some facts about radon that you should know:
  • Breathing radon in your home can cause lung cancer.
  • Radon has been found in every state – radon levels can vary greatly from home to home even in homes next to each other.
  • Radon is measured in picocuries per liter of air represented as pCi/L, a measurement of radioactivity. Average indoor levels are 1.3 pCi/L - outdoor levels average 0.4 pCi/L. If your indoor level is between 2.0–4.0 pCi/L you should strongly consider fixing it, and if it is at or above the maximum “acceptable” level of 4.0 pCi/L it is recommended you fix the issue.
  • Radon tests are easy – they last between two to seven days and are non-intrusive. 
  • You can fix a radon gas problem. There are professionals available to implement measure to reduce the radon in your home. New homes can also be built with radon-resistant features.
  • For more information about radon action month, check out the EPA’s website: https://www.epa.gov/radon/national-radon-action-month-information
Exposure to radon is a preventable health risk, and testing radon levels in your home can help prevent unnecessary exposure. Spread the word, and reach out to us today for help scheduling an inspection to keep you and your family safe! 
New Year's Inspiration
“Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go. They merely determine where you start.” ~Nido Qubein
“I hope you realize that every day is a fresh start for you. That every sunrise is a new chapter in your life waiting to be written.” ~Juansen Dizon
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” ~C.S. Lewis
“What the new years brings to you will depend a great deal on what you bring to the new year.” ~Vern McLellan
“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
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