By Tina Mason
It’s been a crazy few months, with most of us stuck at home and most businesses closed. Even now, as some places start to re-open, many of the restrictions, especially on group gatherings, remain in place, and it could be some time before things get back to normal.
In the mean time, what can you do to pass the time? You’ve already streamed the entire Netflix library, read several books, and could really use something new to break up the monotony. You may have some larger projects you want to get done around the house, and this is a good time to work on those. If you’re ready for a major home improvement project, and need a home improvement loan or home equity line of credit, one of our specialists can help you with great rates. There are probably many contractors looking for work right now, so it could be a good time to get those projects started.
But, given we’re still in the middle of so much uncertainty, maybe you’re not ready for such a large investment. There are still plenty of ways to give your home an upgrade without spending a lot. Here are just a few projects you can do on your own that will give your home a new look.
Paint the front door – Your door is the first thing most people notice, even if they’re just passing by. It’s certainly how most people enter your home. So, if it’s looking a little faded or run down, try giving your door a fresh coat of paint. You can even go with a completely different look with a color change. Don’t forget your shutters.
Patio/deck accent lighting – There are many styles of outdoor string lights available that can give your outdoor area a new look and add character for your summer nights. Even if you’re not entertaining right now, you’ll enjoy being outside with just your family more than ever.
Build a fire pit – Sure, you can buy a fire pit, but why not enjoy the satisfaction of making one yourself? You may also save a little money doing it yourself using inexpensive wall blocks or pavers from your hardware store. When you’re done, you can set up your outdoor furniture around your fire pit and enjoy the ambience year-round. But, make sure you follow common safety procedures when lighting and putting out your fires.
Plant a garden – Have a little extra space in your yard or an old garden area you haven’t maintained in years? This is a great time to get a new garden going, and you don’t need much to do it. With some wood or plastic edging and maybe some decent soil, you’ll be ready to plant your own vegetables and herbs in no time. For a little extra visual appeal, you can build a raised bed garden. You might also want to consider building a fence around it using 2×2 posts and some garden fencing.
Window or deck boxes – If you don’t have room for a garden, you could always start with deck or window boxes. You can plant herbs or certain vegetables, depending on the size of you boxes, or you can put in flowers to add some color around your patio or deck areas. You can find fairly inexpensive boxes, or if you have a few simple tools, make one.
Solar lights – You can create a totally new look for your gardens or walkways by adding some inexpensive solar landscape lighting. They will not only look great, but can make it easier to navigate in the dark – especially if you need to get to the fire pit you just built.
Organize your basement – Over the years, your basement, shed, garage, or closets have probably become cluttered with various items. This is a great time to turn those into projects by cleaning them out, organizing them, and probably finding you can get rid of some unused or old items that are just taking up space. When you’re done, you’ll be able to find things more easily, and probably have created more space for storage. You can add new shelves if you need even more space.
Accent walls – Are you tired of the same old look in your living room or bedroom? Think about painting one of the walls a different color to create contract and give the room a new look. If your ceilings are looking a little old and grey, try giving them a new coat of paint, too – especially if you have an older home with popcorn ceilings you just can’t stand.
Update your kitchen cabinets – A simple way to give your kitchen a brand new look is by refinishing your cabinet doors. It can be as simple as a new coat of paint to give them a totally new look, or you can replace them with a different style at much less cost than replacing the entire cabinet. Want an even bolder new look? You can make inexpensive glass front doors using plexiglass. Adding new knobs completes the touch, or you can just start with that if you want to keep it simple. While you’re at it, replacing your doorknobs is another way to give your entire home a bit of a new look.
Rearrange your furniture – Sometimes, all it takes is a little creativity with the furniture you already have to completely refresh your home. Try different arrangements, keep an open mind, and you may be surprised at how easy it is to create a totally redesigned living space with no investment at all.
There are countless other ways you can improve your home inexpensively. Get creative, get advice from friends, take a look at what you have around the house that you can repurpose, and you may be surprised at how easy it is to turn any room into a brand new experience.