Look good for less: How to renovate your home on a budget
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There's nothing quite like turning a house into your home. That can stem from decorating it with your own special pieces, those small touches that make the world of difference.
Or it could be from moving beyond the indoor area over to the outside, turning those large grassy patches into a beautiful garden.
This personal touch can really feel like you've put your roots down, literally. However, for some it's a little more than a few knick-knacks, or a flowerbed; it's renovating the space to reflect your tastes and start your story.
Unfortunately, we don't all have the budget to splash the cash on whatever we want.
So we've put together the top tips that will revolutionise your house and help take it from simply a space you spend your time in, to the home you'll never want to leave, without the need to take out a second mortgage.
When beginning your renovation process, it can be easy to be overwhelmed with where to start, you'll find many queries can start to pop up.
Do you opt for particle board or plywood? Carpet or floorboards? Suddenly everything needs fixing, replacing, or changing, what do you even begin with?
The simplest answer is to break things up into more manageable bite-size pieces.
Start with simple fixes. They can make the world of difference without any major effort, or financial strain.
Tackle your spaces paint job first; a fresh coat of paint can completely revitalise a room, and it is so easy to save money when undertaking this task.
Rather than outsourcing somebody to paint your place for you, kill two birds with one stone by turning your need for a new paint job into a fun bonding activity with some friends.
This way, you can DIY your walls, save the labourer costs and spruce up your social life, all in one activity. It's a win-win for all.
Never underestimate the power of some new lighting. Switching old, yellowed lighting for some brighter, white bulbs can have you seeing your home in a whole new light, literally.
This task is so simple and easy but will no doubt give you the ability to see what actually needs fixing in your house; perhaps your floorboards don't actually need ripping out, they just looked a little tired under the wash of old light fixtures.
The right light opens up a space and brings a whole new energy to each room, without breaking the bank.
Rather than looking at each room as an opportunity for change, try to focus on what specifics needs to be changed to create a different feeling.
Bathrooms are often a place that needs the most work done, but if throwing it all out and starting anew isn't an option, hone in on the details.
Start with a new mirror and a change in taps and handles. These swap-outs are not only going to add value to your interior but also can be used as an opportunity to inject some of your own personality.
Changes in little details like these will undoubtedly make your home feel all brand new, and as an added bonus, it can breathe new life into older details, like bathroom tiles or bathtubs that before may have seemed outdated or out of place.
When renovating your house, correcting specific problems is not limited to your bathroom. Take stock of what it is you want to change in each area, it's unlikely to be everything from the floor up, but rather outdated finishes.
If a switch in light bulbs wasn't enough to brighten up your living room, take notice of the curtains. Do these fit your interior style, or are they silently stifling your artistic vision?
Switching from a heavy curtain to a lighter shutter will refresh a tired space and instantly update its style.
Once you make this simple swap you'll find there's less need for major overhauls.
Time to deep clean
It's important to start with a blank canvas when you envision what needs changing. When your interior is cluttered it's difficult to see past the mess and fully understand what you'd like to do with your space.
However, a blank canvas does not simply mean emptying out clutter; it's time to crack out the vacuum and plug in the steam mop.
After you've given your home a proper clean you may find that that yellowing carpet may simply have been dirty rather than discoloured.
Or that drab wallpaper was just coated in grime. If you want to go a level further and ensure your home is spotless, hiring a professional cleaning service is still a significantly lower cost than the price of a full home renovation.
When your space is shining, you may still find things you wish to change. Whilst the carpet is a much more seemly shade of white than before, perhaps you just prefer floorboards.
Or white walls over wallpaper. However, making certain everything is properly cleaned will likely change your mind on other changes, or, tide you over until you have a larger budget.
This will therefore cut down on costs in the long run.
Renovating your home when you have budgetary confinements is all about being able to see your space with clear eyes, rather than having your judgement clouded after watching one too many episodes of a home renovation television program.
By fixing up a few little things, they can make subtle but effective changes to how you see your house, and you'll find that maybe you didn't need to knock down that wall to add more radiance, you just needed better light fixtures and a bright wash of white over your walls.