Want to update your home on a budget? How about a budget of zero dollars? Here are 10 ways to update your home for free:
- Take everything out of the room and start over. It’s amazing what can be achieved by starting off with a blank canvas. Not only will you edit and remove everything that is not purposeful or beautiful, but you may even come up with an entirely new furniture layout to add fresh energy into the space.
- Roadside shopping. Find a treasure by the curb, clean it up and call it yours. I think half of New York City operates like this. It is amazing the things that people no longer want to live with and place at the curb because it is too much work to think about the alternative.
- Go online. Kijiji, Craigslist, Listia, Recycalize, Curb Alert – are all websites that cater to locating free goods. The only investment you’ll have to make is a little sweat equity and gas for your vehicle or friend’s truck.
- Phone a friend. Do you know someone that can paint inside the lines? How about asking them to assist with a feature wall in your home in exchange for watching theirs while they go on vacation or another cost appropriate trade in kind? Recruit your creative and talented friends and think of ways you can help each other. And when you show off their handiwork, make sure you give them credit and hand out their name for additional work.
- Reuse those hues. Speaking of paints, I personally like using the cans of paint that are left over from different projects. For my son’s $0 room makeover, I put painter’s tape on the walls and created extra-large stripes using two existing colours that were already in the house. Not only does the room have a hip paint finish now, but I’m also assured that the colours flow seamlessly throughout the entire house.
- Change out the artwork. If you need a fresh boost of colour and can’t paint a wall, try changing up what’s on the walls. In the winter, I have a dark sombre piece of art above my fireplace. When summer arrives, I love the vibrant hues, so I replace the art with a more colourful piece. If you have anything in storage that can be placed on a wall, see how you can re-incorporate it into your scheme. If you can use the same hangars and hooks, that’s a bonus.
- Look outside. Mother Nature offers us some of the best $0 decor hands down. My favourites include, pussy willows, cut garden flowers, dogwood branches, wheat sheaves, pine cones, cedar boughs, cherry blossoms, lilacs, birch wood, drift wood, and river rocks. There’s so much out there, just make sure you’re not helping yourself to items on other people’s property.
- Initiate a decor swap with your friends and family. Maybe your parents or grandparents have a Danish teak credenza or a cool retro floor lamp that they no longer have a use for, and hey, these things might just look perfect in your space, right?
- Auctions and Estate Sales. Some of my best scores have been from places where I have stumbled across a box of mystery goods that accompanied the purchase that I was actually making. At these kinds of sales, items are required to get sold or relocated in very short order. Not only can you find some great deals, but they might throw in a few free extras along with it. Bartering skills tend to help.
- Take the time. A lot of us don’t have the spare time to do a complete room makeover. Book off the afternoon one day and take the time to ruthlessly edit, thoroughly clean, sort unwanted items into piles, and then drop them off to their respective locations or call a charity service that will collect. You will be surprised how good you feel entering a room that is just simply neat and organized. It’s a makeover in and of itself.
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