When we were house hunting for our home a few months ago, before we landed where we are, we saw a whole bunch of houses. We saw brand new homes, newly renovated homes, and ones that were old (and looked their age). Some had never been updated in the time that they had been standing (we were open to a project).
We saw these two homes back to back on a Saturday afternoon. They looked similar in the listings online, so we wanted to see both just in case we liked one. Both were around the same age (built in the 70’s), within 5 kilometers from each other and had similar layouts, like many houses built in that era did.
One had never been updated at all. It still had the brown carpet, wood trim, and same old yellow toilet and sink. One had been barely updated, but it was a thousand times better than the previous.
When we saw the house we ended up buying, the updates weren’t extensive, but the they were enough to make the house look way newer, and it wasn’t expensive, either.
Here are some things that we saw really updated the house drastically, with little work and little budget:
Give it a Fresh Paint Job
It’s absolutely astounding what fresh paint will do to a room. It can brighten it up, make it look larger (or smaller), and change the dynamic. It makes it look cleaner and newer.
Make sure to paint the house a color from this decade, and hopefully something that will tie the color scheme in. If you are looking to sell your home and that is why you need to update it, make sure that the paint color you choose is something neutral and universal.
The lighting in a home is really important. It can make a huge difference. Replace the fixtures to modernize a home. Try to go with a fixture that is timeless and classic. You’ll be able to get some inspiration at lighting stores and in design magazines and look-books. Focus on the photos of rooms that don’t focus on funky light fixtures; these will go out of style and date the home when they do.
You’d be surprised at how modern you can make your home just by getting rid of some old junk that you have lying around. If you can’t part with it, put it in storage. Open, clean spaces make the space more modern and enjoyable to be in.
Clutterless homes are timeless.
Replace Your Handles, Knobs and Hardware
I once was helping my dad work on updating a home that was really, really outdated. The owners were on a strict budget and he was helping them out.
He took the home from out-dated to more modern just by going around and replacing the door knobs from those old, gold color knobs to brushed steel ones, which he got for less than $15 at the hardware store.
He also replaced the handles on the cabinetry, taking the plain white cabinets from 1992 to 2010 (at the time).
Closet doors also got a hardware face lift, as did the towel hanger and toilet paper holder in the bathroom. Each and every tiny change really helped refresh the space and make it look more modern, and it only cost a couple hundred dollars.
This may not be the least expensive option, but updating your flooring can be one of the most beneficial things you can do to update your home. If you still have 70’s shag carpet, even just replacing it to a cheaper laminate or neutral carpet will make a huge difference.
Everyone wants to live in a nice, updated home, but sometimes you just don’t have the money to do so. These tips may give your home that breath of fresh air that you crave without breaking the bank.
So, have you made any upgrades to your home? What did you do?