Adding value to your home doesn't necessarily mean subtracting from your bank account. The trick is to be creative! There are several things you can do yourself, even on the smallest of budgets, which will improve the overall look of your home, while adding value at the same time.
Here are some steps to get you started:
1. Hire a Professional Designer or Realtor to look at your home. Having a professional and fresh set of eyes come look at your home is a great way to not only get new ideas, but establish a long term design goal so you can start plugging away.
2. Have your Home Inspected. Home inspectors are usually called out when a home is going on the market, but why not reap the benefits when you are still living in the home? By having problems pointed out to you now, you can fix them before they become bigger issues down the road.
3. Give your Home a Fresh Look. Painting is an inexpensive and easy way to give your home an entirely different look and feel. Earth tones are best; choose zero VOC paint which is good for your home and the environment.
4. Be Your Own Designer. Go through design magazines and books to get ideas for your home. Keep a file of the designs that appeal to you most. Be mindful of current design trends and think hard a about whether they will work for your home before you put them into place.
5. Give Your Home Some Good Energy. Go online to your local utility's website and get an energy audit for your home to evaluate your home's energy efficiency. Not only will you get tips for improving your home's energy, but you'll also find extra savings in your wallet down the road.
6. Plant Trees. Strategically planting trees and bushes around your yard can be a natural way for you to give your home shade and keep it cooler during warm summer months, thereby lowering your energy bill.
7. Think Green. When choosing plants for your yard, choose drought-tolerant plants that are native to your region. They won't require as much maintenance or water, saving you money over time.
8. Ditch the Popcorn. If you have popcorn ceilings, spend a weekend scraping it off. Re-texturing the area to give it a fresh, new, updated look.
9. Make a Good Impression. Keeping lawns and hedges trimmed, bushes neatly manicured and gutters cleaned will help your home make a good impression. This is something you can easily do yourself or outsource to a professional.
10.Create Open Spaces. Even a small home can appear larger by maximizing the square footage. To do this, use furniture that is proportional to your home's space and remove furniture pieces to create the illusion of more open space. Strategically hang mirrors in your rooms to open up the room.
11. Update Your Bathroom. Even small bathroom updates can make a world of difference. Updating your fixtures and mirrors, painting and installing new glass shower doors are easy and affordable ways to make big design improvements.
12. Update Your Fixtures. One of the simplest and easiest ways to transform the look of your space is by updating the light fixtures and ceiling fans around your home. Even on a small budget, you can find chic fixtures that will dramatically improve your home's style.
Good luck with your inexpensive home improvements!