Making changes to your home is always a daunting task. Even the smallest renovation or decoration decision seems to come with an endless amount of extra steps you'd never considered until you're already in the middle of the whole process. That's why researching the easiest ways to get the job done before you ever step foot into your favorite home-improvement store is so important — especially if you're on a particularly tight budget.
Luckily, all of the options below are both inexpensive and totally easy to pull off! You can pick your favorite or add up all five to give your home a total makeover. Whichever way you go, you're sure to be happy with the results.
Grab a Few Cans of Paint
Forget the feature wall — be bold and use a darker or more colorful shade over a white base to create eye-catching effects on a budget. Try painting in a stripe where crown moulding would go, or divide the room with a panel of paint in a contrasting color around the spot where some paneling would be, or up to a third of the way down from the ceiling. Use the same matte or sheen paint for the rest of the walls, or choose a higher-sheen or gloss finish for a textural effect.
Save Space with Inset Shelving
If you're renovating your kitchen or bathroom, consider building shelving into the wall. Inset shelving has a clean look that will make the most of your space, and all you'll need are a few extra tiles or strips of splashback. It’s an especially great shelf for your bathroom amenities, either above the sink or in the shower. It’s also the perfect spot for cooking utensils and basic oils and seasonings above the cooktop in the kitchen.
Completely Customize Your Storage
If you plan it early, it's not that much extra effort to create a completely customized storage space (where you can set the depth and width) that will last as long as your walls. You could even make a feature out of it and line the inside of the shelf with a different material. Consider using a patterned or darker colored tile, or go for natural stone such as marble or granite, glass mosaic tiles, or even timber. It's also a nice way to incorporate some more expensive tiles or finishes into your design, especially if you're unable due to budget constraints.
Walk-In Closet Fantasy Vs. Reality
I've never understood the point of having a large bedroom — personally, I'd prefer to have more closet space! Unfortunately, a walk-in closet is a luxury that not many of us can manage. If you do have a bit of room and you're wondering how to make the most of it, consider building in furniture so you can maximize the space you have and increase your storage. If you're installing closets, make them full height. If you have especially tall ceilings, break them up into two vertical sections — the higher ones can be used to store non-seasonal clothing and linen.
When In Doubt, Plywood
It's sometimes difficult to inject personality into your furnishings when you're on a budget, especially when your decorating style rules out a lot of the classic or antique furniture you might be able to find at second-hand or vintage shops. That's where plywood comes in. You can dress it up or dress it down, but it will always have a warm, modern vibe. Have custom furniture made from it, such as shelving units, study nooks, storage boxes, or kitchen cabinets. You might still have to pay for labor, but the cost of materials will be relatively inexpensive, and you can finish the raw surface in a myriad ways to get whatever look you want, from waxes and stains to limewash and paint.
This post originally appeared on our sister site, Homes to Love.