2020 House Goals

Every year recently Ive set a list of house goals (as in since weve had enough money to have goals, woohoo) to help plan out what needs to be done to keep up with the never-ending assignment that is homeownership. I made a rough list of 2020 house goals because a plan at the outset of the year works best for us because some things can or should be done in certain seasons. I definitely wouldnt want to have the windows replaced in the winter, or paint the carport ceiling in July.

This past year was focused on the garage, especially money-wise. I definitely underestimated the costs on it, but its only because I went high dollar on the doors. Who could possibly know the costs of a custom-made accordion garage door unless theyve bought one before? Many home projects are like that though, especially with labor. Its hard to estimate labor costs, which can make estimating the entire project tricky. Some of these projects I have in mind may become 2021 projects depending on labor costs for those that have to be hired out! The rest of them that we can do ourselves will depend on our own energy and how much it rains on weekends.

Accordion garage doors

That being said, my list of 2020 house goals, broken down by quarter, consists of:


  1. Replace the front storm door. Our current one is very old and looks it. It also covers up the pretty scrollwork in our midcentury door! Im debating between one with a retractable screen that creates a line in the middle of the door, or a full-glass storm door, but while searching I found a storm door with a small screen at the bottom as a compromise to the screen situation. HMM. I want to get this done fairly soon in 2020 since its not very expensive and will make a big difference.
  2. Put up more privacy fence. Weve been putting privacy fence up in our back yard piece by piece, and the back panel is up next now that we have new backyard neighbors. Previously, it was very very old people who probably couldnt even see as far as our yard, but one of their adult kids lives there now, and we know they can see us. This needs to be completed before it gets hot.
  3. Finish painting the kitchen cabinet trim and ceiling. Ive already asked my dad to help me, now its a matter of gathering the materials and finding a weekend that suits! This is the kind of nonsense its looked like for a while now: Half painted kitchen ceiling


  1. Get decent chairs for the front porch. Ive been using those plastic Adirondack chairs for a few years and its a little nerve-wracking to get to comfortable in them because as soon as you do, they crack from being dried out over the years.
  2. Paint the front door. I love the hot pink that I put on there way back in the day, but I think its time to reflect a new point in our lives. Having the freedom to paint a door hot pink is no longer a novelty, and I am going to repaint the door to the same blue-green-gray color all the others doors will get painted eventually. On a separate note, painting doors sucks!


  1. Get a quote on backyard work. I want to do some major hardscaping in the backyard, including creating a patio, building retaining walls, adding drainage to the sidewalk next to the house, and more. I know its going to be a lot and getting a quote is going to make me want to do it sooner than we can afford, but knowing the price is half of the battle. Or hey, maybe its not as expensive as youd think to bring a backhoe and several tons of stone into the backyard? Our backyard needs work
  2. Make bathroom lights dimmable. This is a small, easier fix, but I really want the lights in the bathrooms to be dimmable because that brightness first thing in the morning is harsh. This just requires a little help from an electrician. Luckily, we have a family one handy.

Q4 or anytime

  1. Pay off the HELOC from the garage work. We have a home equity line of credit that we got to remodel the kitchen, and since it got paid off, weve been using the $10k limit to get new projects done about every other year. Right now we owe about $8k on it because weve been paying it very slowly so we could focus on building up some savings. Now its time to tackle that so we can get on to other matters, like maybe that backyard hardscaping.
  2. Cross our fingers the HVAC doesnt need to be replaced this year. Weve had some issues on and off with it for the past two years, the last time being the last time it was warm enough to need it this year (about early November I think). We turned it off and havent thought about it since, and I hope we can squeeze another year out of it, because those things runs like $10k for a whole new system. Its certainly not the most fun way to use five digits of money.

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