Here are ten products you can install and use to update your home, and make it easier to maintain. Most of these items can be found at your local participating Ace Hardware store.
1. Honeywell WIFI Programmable Thermostat. This device installs like a standard thermostat, and allows the user to control the temperature in your home from any WIFI enabled device, $249.
2. Whole house gas generator. These units can power your entire home in the event of a power outage. They run off of natural gas or propane, and will kick on in as little as 30 seconds when the power goes out, and can run indefinitely. This unit does need to be installed by a seasoned DIY’er or professional. They cost around $4,000-$6,000, depending on the size.
3. Gutter Brush Gutter Guard for gutter protection. This item is a terrific DIY project to keep you from ever cleaning your gutter again. Easy to install and affordable. You can outfit the average size home for around $300.
4. Clark + Kensington Paint + Primer in One. This paint is super sticky, and makes much quicker work of both indoor and outdoor painting. Also, this paint was top-rated by Consumer Reports, $30 a gallon.
5. Air-O-Swiss Ultrasonic Humidifier. This can make a large room in your home more comfortable by delivering the proper humidity. Easy to use and very effective, $139.
6. Toro Lightweight Electric Snow Shovel. (For you warm weather viewers: this is not for you. HA!) A terrific tool for quick and easy snow removal. Great for people that cannot lift snow, and need to clear a front stoop or balcony of snow, $99.
7. 3M Filtrete Furnace Filter. The air in our homes is 3 to 5 times more polluted than outdoor air, according to the EPA. By upgrading your furnace filters, you can improve the indoor air quality in your home, $10.99.
8. Milwaukee M12 Series Drill Driver. This is one of the best types of power tools for many different jobs around your home. It has lithium-ion batteries that can hold a charge for up to 18 months. You can use this as a drill or a driver. It’s a very versatile tool, $99.
9. Woods Flip Switch Timer. This is a timer that mounts over your existing switch. No electrical work needs to be done because it’s battery operated. This is a mechanical system that just flips the switch, and you simply mount it over the trim plate, $20.99.
10. Etón American Red Cross Solar Crank Emergency Radio. This is a must-have for any one. It keeps you informed in the event of an emergency, and can even charge devices like cell phones, $59.99.