Every year a quarter of us plan to make home improvements to make our nest more comfortable.
But we all know that renovations or updating your home in any way usually mean EXPENSIVE. But we have some frugal tips and simple ways to update your home if you are on a budget.
There is no shame in being frugal, in fact, the word ‘thrift’ is widely considered fashionable when hunting for bargains. So if you’re one of those people that put such a task off thinking your Mrs will spend a fortune on high-end finishes, don’t be. There are many things you can do to give your tired home a facelift without blowing the budget.
If you have no idea where to start and just need a bit of inspiration – Temple & Webster have a ‘Renovation Look Book‘ which shows you different styles. Have a good look at Pinterest too for ideas!
1. Simple Kitchen Renovations
The heart of every home – the kitchen is usually the first part of the house that can look tired. So when updating your home – look at the kitchen first. What is it about the kitchen that bothers you? Is it just outdated, does it need paint or brighter lighting? Here are the best (and cheapest) places to start.
Replace the Tapware, Handles and Light Fixtures
Providing you haven’t got a 70’s retro kitchen with laminated flooring and matching benchtops, for a few hundred dollars you could replace the kitchen taps, add new cabinet handles and update old light fixtures with brighter and more modern decorative fixtures to add instant elegance.
Paint or Replace the Cupboard Doors
If your cupboards are a bit dated why not consider just replacing the doors if the framework is still in good shape or alternatively a simple quick refresh with a few coats of paint and new handles will do the trick. All these ideas are a lot cheaper and less hassle than replacing the entire kitchen.
Replace the Bench Tops
Rather than replacing the whole kitchen, it is possible to replace the benchtops and there are so many options. Budget wise you could go for Laminex. If you have a bit more you could go for an artificial stone. If you can do it yourself, Bunnings quite often has benchtops in stock in a variety of colours and styles.
2. Updating The Bathroom on a Budget
Next to the kitchen when you update your home is the bathroom. These days’ bathrooms are more than a place to have a shower and do your hair they’re a peaceful private place to unwind from the stresses of the day and if designed right, can leave you lingering for hours.
Key elements in creating an inviting and ambient bathroom will depend on your choice of colour, lighting, texture and aroma – all factors that create the warmth of a great bathroom. Remember the bathrooms of the 70’s” carpet floors and avocado coloured sinks, eww!
Paint Your Old Tiles:
Old tiles, cracked or broken or filthy grout will always let down the look of your bathroom. Fix everything that needs fixing and you will be amazed at the improvement. It doesn’t take long to learn how to tile or fix grout (see YouTube to learn how). Grout can also be replaced or repainted and always makes a bathroom look cleaner and brighter.
If your tiles are really old and outdated – you can even buy special tile paint now. The tiles do need a fair bit of preparation but the end result is a cleaner look in a more modern colour – without having to go to the expense of re-tiling an area. Ask your local Paint or Hardware store for tile paint.
Or Tile Over Your Old Tiles
Many people on a budget are now tiling right over their old tiles. Provided the old tiles are level – this is a cost-effective way of updating the whole look of your bathroom.
Replace Cabinet Doors & Fixtures:
Paint or buy new cabinet doors and door handles a shiny new towel rack and add new light fixtures and your bathroom will have a whole new look. Shop around at car boot sales, markets and thrift stores where you’ll find old meets new.
Replace the Toilet
Toilets are pretty cheap – and a new, pretty bright dunny is a great way to upgrade a bathroom, especially if you are modernising the space. Best of all, it isn’t hard to replace a toilet yourself.
Add Storage for Better Organisation
A well-organised bathroom is a bathroom with organized bathroom furniture and accessories. Storage is an important aspect of any bathroom makeover and makes a huge difference to the overall look and feel of the room and it’s cheap and easy to do! There are three ways to organise and store bathroom items: wall storage, towel racks and shelves. Start by having a good sort out of your bathroom, this will help you to choose the best bathroom furniture.
3. Paint Is The Ultimate Renovation
New paint makes everything look clean and bright again. Even if you don’t do anything else to update it’s amazing what a new coat of white paint on the ceiling will do to brighten things up. Ceilings get dingy over time with smoke, dust and dirt almost without you noticing it. Painting your ceiling white also gives the illusion of a high ceiling and helps to enhance the feeling of space.
To save time and money you can paint over the existing paint all you need to do is remove all flaked, sticky and dirty areas by cleaning and lightly sanding over them. Ensure all walls are free of mildew and dampness before painting.
4. Budget-Friendly Flooring
Installing new floors has never been easier or cheaper, not to mention you can do it all yourself. Click flooring can be installed right on top of your existing ugly floors (providing they’re already level). Achieving your dream floor with laminate tile or wood will save you hundreds.
Grab samples from your local flooring store, and place them in your space to see how it works. Flooring looks different in the showroom than it does in your own home.
Vinyl flooring is perhaps the cheapest and most durable flooring. You can get timber look vinyl that looks like the real thing. If you have more in the budget, consider laminate flooring. The only problem with laminate flooring is that it can swell if it gets wet, and if it isn’t laid properly, you will almost certainly run into problems later on.
The most creative ideas do not come from not having an endless money pit or from trendy interior designers, it looking at every item carefully and seeing its full potential.
When every penny counts it’s important to choose items that will make a big impact for the lowest price possible. A big tip is when you’re in a big home improvement store, stay focused on what you’re after (cover your eyes when you walk past those $1000 light fixtures).