A new year is here, and with it, new opportunities to make the most of your home, health, finances and other critical life aspects. If you’re looking to get your 2019 started off right, consider the following ideas:


  1. Get the ball rolling on that remodeling project you’ve been dreaming about. Assemble your team (contractor, interior designer), establish your budget and determine permit requirements.


  1. Schedule preventative health appointments with your general physician, optometrist and dentist. You should also consider scheduling a hearing test with a professional audiologist. Since hearing loss sets in gradually, regular testing will help ensure preventative treatment.


  1. Get a jump on your taxes by sending 2018 financial documents to your tax preparer as soon as you receive them.


  1. Curb energy waste in 2019. Create a whole-house energy solution by replacing old insulation/ductwork and sealing off drafty areas. Not only will you save energy, you’ll save money.


  1. Take your vehicle to a local auto repair shop for maintenance. Have its oil changed and its engine, tires, brakes, and lights checked. If it has been more than 30,000 miles since your vehicle’s last transmission service, consider getting a complete fluid and filter change.


  1. Make health and fitness a priority in 2019—sign up for a membership at a local health club or Pilates studio.


  1. Make sure your home’s smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are present and functional. If they’re outdated, replace them with the latest models. These “one-time use” detectors have a 10-year lifespan, during which you never have to change a battery.


  1. Back up your digital data. It’s easy to procrastinate when it comes to backing up your pictures and other important files, but the heartbreak that results from data loss isn’t worth the risk. For maximum security, your digital data should live in three places: your computer, an external hard drive and the cloud.


  1. Reduce water waste in your home by installing a hot water recirculation pump. While you’re at it, have your plumbing system inspected to rule out leaks and other hidden issues.


  1. Streamline your daily life with automation technology by converting your home to a “smart home.”


  1. Planning to install a new swimming pool for next summer? Better get started now—a swimming pool project typically takes several months to complete.


  1. Make your home environment more peaceful (as well as energy-efficient) by upgrading your window glass from standard 1/16-inch panes to triple-strength over double-strength panes.


  1. Have the trees on your property assessed by a certified arborist. This will allow you to preventatively identify any vulnerabilities or health issues.


  1. Add some color to your life in 2019 by repainting your home interior (and, if necessary, the exterior). Check out these pro tips on choosing the right color scheme.


  1. Refresh your home environment with a one-time professional house cleaning. If you’re happy with the results, consider signing up for recurrent cleaning services.


  1. Convert your home’s electrical system to solar power while the federal tax credit and other incentives are still available. They won’t last much longer!


  1. Find love in 2019—buy (or, better yet, adopt) a new dog or a new cat. Be sure to take them to the veterinarian for vaccinations and a health assessment.


  1. Protect your car’s paint job by having an auto body professional apply a polymer sealant that guards against oxidation.


  1. Find a quality locksmith and keep their number handy—that way, if you find yourself in an emergency situation, you won’t fall prey to a locksmith scammer.


Here’s to a happy and prosperous 2019!


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