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Home Improvements on a Budget

With a little grit and some creative inspiration, you can add market and personal value to your home without breaking the bank. Here are some tips and tricks on how to get started improving your home, followed by some suggestions for small yet budget friendly improvements.

Tips and Tricks to Get Started

  • Start by making a Pinterest account and create a board of homes and interior/exterior design styles you enjoy. This will act as inspiration and help you get a creative vision for some of the improvements you might like to make to your home.

  • Once you have an idea of the improvements you want to do, go on YouTube to watch tutorial videos for DIY projects like how to paint a room or how to build a raised garden bed.

  • Check local thrift stores and antique stores to find the most unique items at a good price. Check often to find the items you are looking for since inventory is constantly changing at these stores.

  • Join your local Buy Nothing group on Facebook. Simply search “Buy Nothing {name of city you live in}” on Facebook and ask to join. On this page you’ll find people in your community giving away items they no longer need, for free. This is a good place to find things like paint, wood, rugs, pillows, and even furniture.

  • Borrow tools from your neighbors or rent tools from your local hardware store to save money.

Interior Improvements

  • Get organized: Get some new storage bins and organizers to ensure that everything in your home has a place. If you’ve got a lot of clutter in the house, simply putting things away and having a permanent spot for everything makes a huge difference in the feel of your home. It is usually pretty easy to find storage bins and organizers at thrift stores, especially if you don’t mind if they’re mismatched.

  • Dress up your old furniture or replace it: That couch has seen better days, but instead of taking it to the dump, give it new life with a deep clean or a slipcover — or have the whole thing reupholstered. The Little Green Portable Pet Cleaner is a great option to give your couch a really deep clean. You can also find some great second hand couches on the internet. Try checking Facebook Marketplace for local deals.

  • Manage cables: Hide power strips in a cable management holder for a less cluttered look and to keep cables away from children and pets.

  • Paint: New paint can work wonders inside your home. You can paint a wall in your dining room, the cabinets in your kitchen or in your bathroom, the floor, or even a piece of furniture.

  • Change up your rugs: Area rugs are a great way to add color and comfort throughout your home. Replace old rugs with new colors and patterns, or put a few down in new places. Layer rugs of different sizes and textures for a designer look.

  • Lighting is everything: Replace old light bulbs with warm toned bulbs to add a warmer and more cohesive feel to any room. Install lighting strips or puck lights under your kitchen cabinets or around the base of furniture to give an upscale feel. You can also find some great lamps at your local thrift store to spruce up your space. Even just changing a lamp shade can make a big difference.

  • Switch out those switch covers: Have basic or cheap-looking covers surrounding light switches and power outlets? This is one of the easiest updates you can make — new covers will give you a real bang for your buck in terms of visual impact. Click here for an idea.

Exterior/Outside Improvements

  • Paint: You don’t have to paint your entire exterior to have an impact. You can touch up trim, paint or stain fences and decks, and for maximum impact, repaint your doors!

  • Plants, please: Even if you don’t have room for a garden or don’t have the time to maintain one, adding container plants on your porch or deck is a great way to enhance your home’s appearance. Many people have pots and planters laying around in their backyard, so consider checking your local Buy Nothing Facebook group to find pots and planters on a budget.

  • House numbers: Replacing old worn down house numbers is a great way to spruce up the appearance of your home. Check Etsy for some unique and affordable house numbers.

  • Front door makeover: A new coat of paint or a door-knocker can really dress up your front door. An updated doorbell or doormat can be a nice touch, too.

  • Clean your windows: Take the hose to your windows and buff out any dirt or marks with a microfibre and polishing cloth. You won’t even need to use any soap with these towels.

  • Pressure wash: Hire someone to pressure wash your driveway, patio, or sides of your home. You can do this yourself by renting a pressure washer from your local hardware store, but be sure to do your research. Otherwise, leave it to the professionals.

With some time and patience, you can save money and get the desired look for your home, one step at a time. Any number of these improvements can make a significant impact on the appearance and feel of your home. So start small, get creative and have fun with it.



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