Give your home a spring makeover without breaking the bank.
A home can be a great investment, but there are more expenses to prepare for beyond mortgage payments and regular maintenance. Improvement projects can add thousands of dollars to your total spending. In fact, a 2018 True Cost Report from HomeAdvisor found that homeowners spent an average of $6,649 per household on home improvements last year. Though home upgrades can add value, you don't have to spend a fortune to create a modern look. And with spring ushering in warmer weather, now is the perfect time to tackle improvement projects. Read on for 10 home renovation ideas to update your space on the cheap this spring.Swap out accents.
Swap out accents.
You can give a room a fresh look with a few simple swaps that won't require you to spend hundreds of dollars. Changing decor and adding new accents such as throw pillows, curtains or wall art can give any room a new look on a tight budget. Paul Trudel-Payne, co-founder of the duoLifestyle Brands and principal designer for duoHome, an interior design and lifestyle company, recommends adding accent pillows made from linen in neutral colors and decor pieces made from natural materials like stone, wood and iron. "It makes the space feel bright, fresh and rejuvenated, exactly what you want for spring and summer," Trudel-Payne says. Snag deals on accents with discount retailers like Marshalls and HomeGoods.Give old tiles new life.
Give old tiles new life.
Nearly a quarter of homeowners reported budgeting for a bathroom remodel last year, with the national average cost of doing so at around $9,723, according to the HomeAdvisor survey. If outdated tile work is bugging you, you don't have to drop thousands of dollars to get an updated look. Trudel-Payne suggests adding peel and stick tiles right over your existing ones. Otherwise, you can even paint them. "Tile stencils provide an easy-to-follow guide to paint right over every tile you have always hated," he says. Just make sure to use tile paint or spray paint for the best coverage and durability, he adds.Change cabinetry hardware.
Change cabinetry hardware.
Kitchen and bathroom remodels are among the most common renovations homeowners tackle, but they can also come at an exorbitant price due to the high cost of cabinets and labor. However, you can give your cabinetry a facelift by simply changing the cabinet hardware, suggests Marieta Ivanova, a blogger for the home cleaning and maintenance service provider Fantastic Services Australia. Keep in mind, you will need to find handles, knobs or pulls in the same size and similar style to fit the existing holes in the cabinets. Otherwise, if you decide to paint, the extra holes can be filled, sanded and smoothed so you can choose a completely new look for the update. You can find a variety of styles at different price points by searching home improvement stores like Home Depot.Create texture with wallpaper.
Create texture with wallpaper.
Wallpaper is a fun way to add texture to a room, but covering full walls can also be pricey, with options running as high as a few hundred dollars per roll, plus the cost of installation. To curb costs, consider using wallpaper as an accent. "I recommend putting it in unexpected places like behind shelves, in an alcove, in single panels on a wall, or simply in a pretty wall frame," says Nicole Alexander, principal and owner of Siren Betty Design, a Chicago-based firm specializing in restaurant and hotel design. You can even use peel and stick wallpaper to reduce the cost of labor.Give a room a fresh coat of paint.
Give a room a fresh coat of paint.
Paint can do wonders to make a room look bigger on the cheap. Even better, repainting your trim or front door can give your home a refreshed look for less. By opting for light colors, you can create a brighter space that appears larger and more inviting. Plus, it's one of the easiest home improvement projects that you can do yourself with little experience. The hardest part is choosing the right color. Ivanova suggests trying as many paint samples as possible to find the right shade. "Save yourself money and a few trips to the store by getting a paint sample first," she says. You should also look up paint colors on sites like Pinterest for inspiration.Add lighting to your backyard.
Add lighting to your backyard.
As the weather warms up, you'll likely spend more time outside and a well-lit patio can create an inviting space for any backyard soiree. "Not only does your landscape lighting really transform the look of your yard, it is also very beneficial to keeping your family and guests safe," says Mark Luongo, owner at Luongo Electric Inc., a Canadian-based electronic company. There are many options when it comes to landscape lighting at your local hardware store, but Luongo suggests picking up solar-powered options to save money. They are usually the least expensive and just about anyone can install them, so you cut the cost of labor, he adds.Add a stylish and budget-friendly rug.
Add a stylish and budget-friendly rug.
A rug can help tie all your decorative elements together to create cohesive style without spending a lot of money. Plus, you can add a rug just about anywhere even if you have carpeting or beautiful wood floors. Erica Reiner, owner and principal designer of Eco Method Interiors, a Los Angeles-based design and consulting firm that focuses on eco-friendly materials, says "an area rug anchors the room, defines the space and gives a good starting point to pull colors from." Though rugs can be expensive, you can find a wide selection of styles and sizes at moderate prices at discount retailers like HomeGoods or online at sites like Wayfair and Overstock.com. Since prices range based on brand, style and size, refine your search based on your budget.Replace switch plates and faceplates.
Replace switch plates and faceplates.
Homeowners often overlook how updating the little details can pack a big punch when it comes to improving the look of your home without breaking the bank. Marty Basher, a home improvement and organization expert with Modularclosets.com, a company that create easy-to-install modular closets, says to start by replacing old and dirty switch plates and outlet faceplates. Decent switch plates and faceplates range from $5 to $15 at home improvement stores like Lowe's or even big-box retailers like Walmart, "which can add up for larger homes with two or more stories, but by tackling these upgrades room by room, you avoid breaking the bank," Basher says. He recommends sticking to options available in bronze, stainless steel, tile and porcelain and looks for those featuring designs and textures.Finish a room with crown molding.
Finish a room with crown molding.
An inexpensive way to finish a room is to add crown molding. "Crown molding creates a finished and polished look," Reiner says. "It's often left out when builders or landlords cut corners and adding it back creates a subtle element of luxury and refinement." Just keep in mind that prices range widely – from $1 to $20 per foot – based on the material, size and style you choose. Reiner suggests adding crown molding to the rooms your family and guests are in most, such as the living or family room, kitchen and main bathroom. The bedrooms, halls and secondary bathrooms can wait if you're on a strict budget.Decorate with faux plants.
Decorate with faux plants.
If you've been following interior design trends, you may notice that greenery is all the rage. But achieving this look doesn't mean you have to spring for custom upholstery or even real plants. Alexander suggests saving money by simply adding faux plants to your space, such as potted succulents or Monstera leafs placed in vases or play with twisted branches, she advises. "I recommend clustering them in odd numbers which adds warmth and makes the space feel fresh and inviting," Alexander says. For affordable options, check out Wayfair.com, Overstock.com or a local Target.Here are affordable spring renovation projects:
Here are affordable spring renovation projects:
- Swap out accents.
- Give old tiles new life.
- Change cabinetry hardware.
- Make a splash with wallpaper.
- Give a room a fresh coat of paint.
- Add lighting to your backyard.
- Add a stylish and budget-friendly rug.
- Replace switch plates and faceplates.
- Finish a room with crown molding.
- Decorate with faux plants.
As a sought-after expert, Andrea has been interviewed by top shows such as "Today," "Good Morning America," "The Dr. Oz Show," MSNBC's "Morning Joe," CNN's "America's Newsroom" and "Fox & Friends." In print and online, her stories and advice have been featured in popular media such as The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, USA Today, Money, Forbes, Cosmopolitan, Real Simple, Reader's Digest, Yahoo and many other publications.
With a focus on money management, many of Andrea's articles touch on family finance, budgeting, smart shopping and frugal living. You can read more about Andrea and get her latest blog articles at www.AndreaWoroch.com, subscribe to her YouTube channel or follow Andrea on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram for daily savings advice.