Sprucing Up for Spring

March 2018 Multimedia Jane Willow Web Exclusive

Spring is in the air and it’s always a good time to have a thorough tidy-up in which you clean out your boat after winter—72 percent of us engage in a yearly spring clean. Whether you’re sprucing up your own houseboat or a rental ready for the summer season, there’s plenty you can do yourself to get things working perfectly and add a fresh look to your houseboat.

Making a plan

Living on a houseboat is all about managing the space effectively. Planning any new additions or renovations carefully to make sure that they don’t waste any space is important, and this may mean opting for bespoke fittings which can work with the curves and lines of the boat rather than against them.

Bespoke often comes with a price tag, so make sure that you have a robust financial plan and seek the best credit card option to help fund it. Investing in good quality heating, wiring, and lighting is just as important in a houseboat as in a regular home too—but it can present some unique challenges when it comes to houseboats, which again can come at a price.

Spring and summer are a good time to give this an overhaul though, rather than waiting for it to actually break down in winter when you need it most; so doing some sums with this in mind is a good idea.

DIY projects

Renovating your houseboat needn’t break the bank though—there’s plenty that can be done for under $100 and with your own two hands.

  • Make good use of vertical surfaces. Add wall-mounted racks or hooks for kitchen utensils and spices; and think about wall or ceiling mounted lighting throughout.
  • Add storage and shelving in wherever you can fit it, and make use of crates and boxes to maximize the space while keeping things tidy and organized.
  • A lick of paint can do wonders for giving a space a fresh new look. If you don’t want to repaint all the walls, try adding color to cupboard doors and furniture.
  • Fixtures and fittings such as doorknobs and cupboard handles can be upgraded with a simple screwdriver. Go for a sleek chrome modern look or get cheap wooden ones and paint them yourself. Outlet plates and light switches can also be easily replaced and made into a feature if surrounded by a stylish picture frame.
  • Mirrors give the illusion of space, so add them to cupboard doors and walls to maximize the light in your boat and reflect the surroundings.

DIY renovations in your houseboat come down to what you feel comfortable doing yourself and what your budget is. Some things like wiring and plumbing might be best left to a professional, but for a quick spruce up there’s so much you can do yourself with just a screwdriver and a paintbrush.

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