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DIY Projects to Tackle in the New Year

Various tools and supplies for DIY projects laid out on a table

The new year jumpstarts a forward momentum in many homeowners, which makes it the perfect time to plan new home projects. With the right materials in hand and the desire to improve the interior or exterior of a home, there is no stopping what you can accomplish in the upcoming year!

Not all home improvement projects need to be extensive. Simple DIY projects can bring instant gratification and improved efficiency without the help of a handyman or specialized contractor. Check out our list below for some quick DIY projects to tackle for the New Year!

Exterior Enhancements

They say not to judge a book by its cover, but unfortunately, that’s not the case with homes. Your home’s exterior is the first thing a passersby will notice, so it’s important to execute an appealing design that welcomes people in. To help you dream up a new look, we’ve curated a list of project ideas that add the perfect amount of pop and easily be done by the beginner DIYer. 

Cosmetic Updates

Painting or replacing your front door and trim is a classic way to boost curb appeal with little effort. For those who find the task of choosing the right color overwhelming, stop by the paint department at your local Doug Ashy and our specialists can help you select the perfect shade that adds life to your entryway and compliments your home’s aesthetic. Once you have a game plan in place, consider investing in new front door hardware and mailbox numbers for a fresh, sleek accent that pulls the look together. 

Elevated Landscaping 

There’s no quicker way to offset a plain entrance than adding decorative planters and window boxes with greenery. Want to further your foliage even more? Try landscaping a small area leading up to an entrance! Hardscaping with an inexpensive material such as pea gravel is a great way to fill out your garden in between plants if you’re on a tight budget. 

To ensure clean lines and prevent the pea gravel from washing away, first map out the perimeter of where you intend to install it and level out the ground by digging 5 inches deep across the full area. Ensure the perimeter has a clean trench and install stone or plastic edging around the border. Before laying down the gravel, evenly spread a 2-inch layer of crushed stone with a rake to promote ample drainage and install landscaping fabric on top of it. Lastly, pour in your pea gravel to a 2 ½ inch depth and level it out as smoothly as possible. 

Pipe Prep 

In Louisiana, the cold weather tends to show its face in January—often in the form of sporadic dips below freezing temperatures. This yo-yo pattern of weather makes it difficult to leave winterization prep down to the last minute so it’s best to wrap your pipes at the start of the season. Pipe wrap tape, outdoor faucet covers, and foam pipe insulation are the most popular materials used to insulate exposed pipes and can be found at many home improvement stores, including your local Doug Ashy. Simply, wrap your exposed plumbing tightly to prevent costly water damage expenses from a bursting pipe.

Kitchen DIY Projects

Small kitchen updates can make cooking much more enjoyable while increasing the value of your home. Kitchen and bathroom updates continue to bring in the highest returns on the investment, so it’s best to make sure these areas are as up-to-date as possible.

Faucets & Fixtures

Choosing the right DIY project to tackle this New Year depends on what areas of your kitchen need the most TLC. If your sink looks like something from a 1990s Sears catalog, you might want to install a new apron or drop sink to zhuzh up the focal point of your prep area. Looking for a quick-fix project? A simple swap of your faucet fixture can make an older sink look new! Opt for a pull-down faucet system to achieve a modern look, but steer clear of designs where the spray hose is exposed as they are a headache to keep clean.


To improve the overall design of your kitchen, update your backsplash with a timeless material that’s easy on the eyes (and your hands when it comes time to clean). We recommend sticking with nonporous materials that are stain-resistant like porcelain, ceramic, metal, and glass tile. Remember, your backsplash sets the tone of your kitchen so be sure to choose a design and color scheme that best matches the style of your home and compliments any existing elements that you plan to keep.

Cabinets & Shelving

Incorporating open shelving and refacing cabinets are both simple, budget-friendly ways to improve your storage space without the expense of brand-new cabinets. Even extending your existing cabinets to the ceiling by building an open display space can make a dramatic difference. To complete the look for less, install new drawer pulls or cabinet knobs that pair well with the finishes of your appliances. Time-saving tip: choose hardware with specs that match the measurements of your previously drilled holes to avoid having to do patchwork!

Lighting Upgrades

Brighten your house (literally) by updating sources of lighting. Lighting is often viewed as one overhead fixture or lamp in a room, but light layering is an effective technique for fully illuminating your home’s beautiful interior. This can be done with task lighting, decorative, ambient or accent lighting.

Placing pendant lighting over your eating space, strategically placing canned or recessed lights in your living area, and installing track lighting in your entertainment area are all excellent ideas to add more style and functionality to your home.

New Flooring

Installing flooring was once an extensive undertaking, but today’s innovations make it a much easier task for the DIY homeowner. There are a variety of easy-to-install options that can revamp your home’s interior, including interlocking laminate tiles, interlocking vinyl planks, carpet squares, or room-sized bound carpet pieces. Just be sure to choose the right material for the amount of traffic and moisture the space receives. 

Start Your DIY Projects in the New Year with Doug Ashy

DIY home improvements don’t have to be difficult or extensive undertakings. Knowing which projects to tackle and having the right guidance can help you quickly revamp your home inside and out with ease. If you have any questions about tools or materials or need tips for your upcoming home improvements, we’ve got answers. 

Stop by any of our locations to have our experts guide you through all of your DIY projects in the New Year!

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