Looking to renovate but have a strict budget? Don’t worry so much about money. These five tips will help you update your home on the cheap.
- Make Easy Curb Appeal Upgrades
Hiring a professional to update the landscaping on your 1,200-square-foot yard can cost more than $13,000. But if you’re working on a budget, you can do a number of things yourself to make the refresh cheaper. Remove the weeds and dead grass yourself, then replace it with gravel. Add some colorful plants. Paint your front door a fun color. Mow the lawn, clean the doorknobs, and get a new welcome mat. Even just tiny adjustments like that can make a huge difference in a buyer’s perception of your home.
- Refresh the Interiors
Painting your walls can make an old, tired room look brand new—and it’s not an expensive prospect, either. Gallons of paint generally cost between $25 and $30, so depending on the size of the room you wish to paint, it can be incredibly cost-effective. Make sure you pick the right style paint for each room, though. Matte paint is good for bedrooms because it hides imperfections but takes a bit of work to clean. In areas with high humidity, like bathrooms and kitchens, go for semi-gloss. Save high-gloss for accents, otherwise, you may blind potential buyers with the shininess.
- Update the Floors
Improvements to flooring in your home will net you a 91 to 100 percent return on your investment, says the National Association of Realtors. Currently, buyers are looking for hardwood floors—so if you’ve already got some, buff them up and make them shine. If you suspect there’s hardwood hiding under your carpet, pull up a corner and check; that way you don’t waste time and money ripping up everything just to find unusable base flooring. For the carpet that is there and can’t be removed, a carpet cleaner costs about $30 a day and will make a huge difference. If you want to go all out and replace all the floors, opt for a low-cost laminate. Lumber Liquidators sells great flooring for less than $1 per square foot. Just be sure to keep the floor consistent throughout the house.
- Change Out Hardware
According to Kenny Klaus, a top real estate agent from Mesa, Arizona, swapping hardware and light fixtures for something modern is the easiest—and cheapest—way to make a noticeable upgrade to your home. New lights are available for about $100 each, and it’s possible to replace every piece of hardware in your house for as low as five bucks. Simple round knobs or farm-style pulls are generally the most reliable options.
- Utilize Accessories
Another super cheap way to update your home is to bring in smartly placed accessories. Think mirrors in strategic spots that make a room look bigger, putting out colorful fruit, or swapping dark curtains for a lighter color.