To be honest I was using the shutters only when I left home for prolonged periods of time and at night when I wanted to keep my window open. I am on the entrance floor so, the shutters provided some security. The shutter boxes into which the shutters roll up are a mess. They get very dirty over time and it is not easy to clean them. I have decided to get rid of it all and get brand new windows without shutters. For protection, my new windows will be inward awning with a lock mechanism.
There are three windows that need to be replaced so, I will be spending something in the neighborhood of 2,300 TL. (approximately USD 1,285). Furthermore, I will have brand new screens fitting each window. I think it is a good deal. The money is going to come out of the house repairs fund I had been setting aside. I knew my apartment would require some repairs sooner or later and was prepared for that.
I will buy a storage closet for my balcony in the next few months and I will have the entire apartment painted in the summer. I was preparing to do that in the spring but the contractor told me that it would be best to have the apartment painted in August because when the walls get the humidity once, it is not easy to get rid of it completely. Hopefully I will not need to spend any more money on the apartment until 2014 except for a few minor things here and there.