4 Projects to Boost Winter Business - Pro Construction Guide
Winter Home Remodeling Projects to Boost Your Business

Four Home Remodeling Projects to Boost Winter Business

By Sulema Vela, Southern Division Pro Director, The Home Depot

Winter weather often exposes vulnerabilities that increase heating bills or necessitate expensive home repairs. Unfortunately, most owners only realize that their houses are not ready for the season until it’s too late.

Now is the perfect time to help your clients prepare their homes for cold weather. Whether you are in the middle of a remodel or selling the value of proactive maintenance, there are plenty of opportunities for improvements to improve quality of life for clients.

The following four home remodeling strategies are essentials to boost winter business.

Check the Attic

Many homes – especially older ones – don’t have enough attic insulation, and the attic is the most important part of the house for controlling temperature. Check your client’s attic and look for areas where insulation is missing or lacks depth. Different regions of the country have different recommended R-values, which define how well a building resists heat. Use The Home Depot’s attic insulation calculator to determine your area’s recommended R-value and estimate how much insulation will be required for a particular attic. If applied properly, insulation can reduce overall energy costs by up to 20 percent.

Modern insulation also can deliver benefits beyond temperature control. Merchants from The Home Depot worked with Owens Corning to develop Pure Safety High Performance Insulation, which helps maintain healthy air quality. Available only at The Home Depot, this insulation is asthma and allergy certified by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. For added benefit, the Owens Corning offering also is fire resistant and deters noise, helping your clients sleep better knowing their family will be safe and healthy. If you have a client with family members who deal with serious allergies or asthma, this could be a great recommendation.

Inspect Gaps and Pipes

The average home has enough air leakage to fill a two-foot square hole

The average home has enough air leakage to fill a two-foot square hole, according to the Department of Energy. This is the equivalent of leaving a window open all day. Quick fixes, such as sealing gaps and cracks, are much more efficient than just cranking the heat up.

Recommend a thorough property walkthrough to determine the areas of clients’ homes that are most susceptible to drafts. Keep an eye out for holes, cracks and other gaps that can let in cold air, particularly near doors, windows, vents and pipes. If these areas need repair, foam sealants, weather strips and caulk offer simple fixes that will make a difference in energy bills.

Foam sealants, weather strips and caulk offer simple fixesLight Efficiently

One of the most overlooked ways to save energy in the winter is switching to LED bulbs, which use 85 percent less energy than regular incandescent bulbs. Shorter days and longer nights mean more reliance on lights and an opportunity to save.

However, many clients have been reluctant to switch due to perceived weaker light quality when compared to incandescent alternatives. Fortunately, modern LED bulbs can provide rich, natural lighting.

The Cree 75-Watt replacement LED R20, for example, is one of the brightest R20 LED bulbs available. Exclusive to The Home Depot, this bulb is a great option for areas of the home where clients want the most light, such as rooms with high ceilings. It also lasts more than 20 years, so clients won’t have to worry about climbing a ladder any time soon.

Heat Smarter

Why should your clients pay extra to heat unoccupied rooms? To boost winter business, recommend an upgrade to a modern, smart thermostat that reduces the toll on HVAC systems while also adding a contemporary feel to the home. These thermostats learn the schedule of when family members are typically at home and automatically activate and shut off heat to match. Chances are your clients have heard of smart thermostats, but have hesitated to upgrade in fear of installation challenges – this is a perfect opportunity for you to take the lead.

Recommend an upgrade to a modern, smart thermostat

For added convenience, recommend a new option like the ecobee4 with specialized technology that makes the thermostat more accurate and convenient. This model allows you to connect up to 32 room sensors to ensure even temperature across the home, and also features Amazon Alexa Voice service for simplified control.

Weatherization projects like these help clients save money and address potential hazards before they become large-scale problems. Clients will appreciate the forethought and recommendations you can provide to help them ride out the winter more smoothly.

By Sulema Vela, Southern Division Pro Director, The Home Depot

Sulema Vela is responsible for the Pro business in The Home Depot’s Southern Division, leading a team of more than 80 Pro Account Representatives in an area that encompasses 700 stores across 13 states. She has more than 18 years of experience at The Home Depot, starting in 1999 as a part-time cashier while she earned her Bachelor’s degree in business administration. During her time at The Home Depot, Sulema has served in a variety of roles and capacities – including department supervisor, assistant store manager, store manager and district manager.

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