Major renovations can be daunting, but luckily, there are plenty of home improvement projects that can make a big difference without breaking the bank.
When you love where you live, it’s normal to want to keep your home looking and functioning at its best. Renovations are exciting and can really get your creative juices flowing. When your dreams say “yes!” but the budget says “no,” you need home improvement projects that will have a significant impact without draining your bank account.
There are simple and affordable methods to create the home you’ve always dreamed of, from kitchen upgrades to outdoor makeovers and everything in between. Here are seven easy home improvement projects to update your living space on a budget.
1. Paint Your Walls
One of the most cost-effective ways to transform any room is by giving your walls a fresh coat of paint. Sure, there are pricey cans of paint on the market, but this is a home improvement area with plenty of financial flexibility. You can even save some significant labor dollars by tackling this project yourself.
Paint can do wonders for any room, whether adding a vibrant accent wall or brightening up a room with a lighter tint. If you want to switch things up but aren’t quite sure how here are some paint color trends to spark creativity:
- Calming blues – Blues have been trending this year due to their fresh and inviting qualities. Blue responds beautifully to well-lit rooms, but it also looks equally striking with low lighting. Choose a deep, dark blue for a cozy effect or turquoise hues to revitalize the space.
- Soft lilacs – As of 2023, lilac is the new gray. Lilac is often used as a softer, more passionate version of gray. If you want a look that feels clean but with a little more character, lilac is your friend.
- Pretty pinks – Pink has found its way as a neutral in the design world. Pink has a way of delivering interest to a space without being overwhelming. Earthy, natural pinks are all the rage for kitchen cabinets, bathroom vanities, and bedroom walls.
- Earthy browns – For years, black was everyone’s interior design go-to. Recently, there’s been a shift for its less harsh, neutral counterpart, brown. Rooted in the natural world, earthy browns have a wonderfully calming effect. These shades work beautifully with natural materials such as wood, stone, and bamboo finishes.
If you’re wondering exactly how much paint you’ll need for a particular space, simply use a paint calculator. Generally, a gallon of paint covers anywhere from 350 to 400 square feet. You’ll be amazed at the impact a few cans of paint can make.
2. Swap Cabinet Hardware
If building entirely new cabinetry is not in the budget, updating your cabinet hardware is an easy and inexpensive home project to tackle instead. Upgrading your kitchen or bathroom hardware is a simple and cost-effective way to modernize dated cabinets instantly. New knobs, pulls, and handles can give your cabinets a stylish and fresh look without any hassle.
There are a wide variety of hardware options available, such as:
- Black metal
- Scandi-style wood
- Sculpted wood
- Silver tab pulls
- Rose gold bars
- Half-moon shapes
- Leather pulls
- Midcentury-style recycled brass
- Classic brass
- Shiny brass
- Vintage white
- Antique bronze
- Swan neck pulls
- Matte black
3. Transform Your Window Wells
The outside of your home can be just as fun to renovate as the inside. Window wells are often overlooked but can be dramatically transformed to bring life into your home’s exterior. One unique window well idea is to turn the space into a garden. Here are a few steps to creating this transformation:
- Assess your window wells to evaluate how much sunlight they receive, how much space you have to work with, and whether there are any drainage issues.
- Choose plants with shallow roots that can be replanted each year.
- Select containers that will fit into the window wells and provide adequate drainage.
- Fill your containers with potting soil and compost or fertilizer.
- Plant your chosen plants in their containers.
- Maintain your garden through regular watering.
Another unique window well idea is to spruce them up with window well covers. Window well covers come in several materials, each with its own benefits:
- Mesh screens – Mesh screens prevent smaller debris and pests from entering the window well. These covers allow for air circulation and light penetration.
- Polycarbonate – These transparent covers are a popular choice among homeowners. They allow for sunlight to shine through while simultaneously keeping out debris.
- Metal grates – These covers are crafted from sturdy materials like aluminum or steel. They provide durability and protection.
- Solid covers – These covers are attractive but completely seal off the window well. These are a great choice if you’re not concerned about light entry.
4. Install a Backsplash
Adding a backsplash to your kitchen or bathroom is an inexpensive home project that instantly refreshes the space. This is a relatively simple project, and you can choose from a wide range of materials. Choose the material that works for your heart and your budget. If backsplash materials aren’t currently in the cards, consider a peel-and-stick backsplash for a money-saving solution.
Here are five tips for selecting the kitchen or bathroom backsplash of your dreams:
- Subway tile is popular for a reason, but it’s not the only option on the market — keep looking.
- With so many amazing tile options available, there’s no need to spend the big bucks on backsplashes.
- Make the backsplash more unique with a distinctive layout and grout. After you’ve selected the tile of your choice, nail down the layout, grout joint size, and color.
- Consider the scale of your desired backsplash. A larger scale backsplash generally looks more temporary, and a smaller scale will feel more traditional.
5. Enhance Your Lighting
Solid lighting can make all the difference in a home. Consider replacing old, outdated light fixtures with newer, more attractive options. You can find affordable lighting fixtures at home improvement stores and online retailers.
To further enhance the mood, install dimmer features. This will allow you to brighten up the lights or dim them, depending on the occasion. This inexpensive home project will have a big impact on your daily life.
6. Try Peel-and-Stick Wallpaper
If you want to go bold without commitment, peel-and-stick wallpaper is a temporary way to add color and pattern. Temporary wallpaper can transform a room without tearing up the walls. Opt for a focal wall instead of an entire room to keep this project affordable. In addition to the paper itself, here are a few more materials you’ll need to install the wallpaper:
Ladder or step stool
First, prepare the surface by removing all faceplates and socket covers and cleansing the walls thoroughly. Next, measure the wall to determine how much wallpaper you need per section. Cut it into strips and hand from the top down. Finally, use the rubber squeegee to smooth out any air bubbles. Once complete, add your outlet covers back to the walls and bring furniture back into the newly updated space.
7. Install Crown Molding
Crown molding is an architectural detail that can give any room a sophisticated and polished look. It’s often seen in bedrooms, kitchens, living rooms, dining rooms, and even hallways, offering an elegant finish. Many homeowners assume crown molding is expensive and, therefore, off the table. Fortunately, crown molding is surprisingly affordable and relatively easy to install.
If you have experience with basic carpentry tasks like measuring, cutting, and attaching trim, you’ll find installing crown molding easier. If not, outsourcing your crown molding needs is probably the wisest way to go.
Elevate Your Home With Windowell Expressions!
Be sure to check out Windowell Expressions during your quest for easy home improvement projects on a budget. We have everything you need to transform unsightly window wells into attractive exterior elements.
Our team of experts has you covered with an array of window well ideas and solutions, including well liners, covers, and foundation liners that bring style and functionality to your outdoor spaces. We’re proud to serve homeowners in the Salt Lake City area, helping them breathe life into their home’s exterior. We’ve been happily serving the area for over 25 years!