Tips to Modernize Your Home on a Dime
Whether it’s time or money, it takes an investment to keep your home updated with the most current styles and technologies, but it shouldn’t take your life savings to bring it out of the 1970s. A few smart investments will keep costs down while still effecting big change. Here are a few low-cost places to start modernizing recommended by ABODO:
Perhaps robins-egg blue seemed like a great, timeless choice the last time your front door was painted. It will just take a few coats of primer and new paint to make that door look brand-new, without the full cost of replacement, especially if you touch up the paint on the trim as well. While you’re evaluating your home’s exterior, pay attention to the dated hardware. A new set of house numbers and new mailbox can work wonders, as can upgrading your door handle and replacing exterior lights. If your home appears dated before your guests even come inside, the tone has already been set, and the aging appliances they’re about to see will be even more obvious.
Freshen Up Flooring & Walls
Like painting your front door, giving your walls a fresh coat is an easy way to make the house appear cleaner, newer, and move-in ready. Investing in a bit of new flooring — if, say, your house was remodeled with wall-to-wall carpeting in the misguided 1970s — can pay for itself with value it adds to your home: This Old House reported that spending $600 to replace or upgrade flooring can add up to $2,000 to the sale price. Any project you can take off the buyers’ hands makes your home look that much more inviting to potential buyers.
Rethink The Kitchen
Kitchens, filled with several of your home’s most expensive appliances, are daunting to consider updating. Do you replace the harvest-gold stove? Does it need to match the refrigerator? Luckily, you can give your kitchen a serious facelift without even touching your appliances (though a gentle cleaning wouldn’t hurt). Washing alone can put new life into old cabinets, but for a more dramatic transformation, also repaint or reface them and install new hardware — the cabinets will be unrecognizable, and for a fraction of the cost of replacement. You could also deface your cabinets altogether, and instead try out an open cabinet concept that can showcase attractive dishware.
While you have the tools out to replace cabinet hardware, try your hand at adding a new faucet. Replacing the basin is often the expensive part, but largely unnecessary. Adding a colorful backsplash made up of a few affordable tiles will complete the transformation.
And The Bathroom
Your shower enclosure and toilet can stay — they’re as expensive as they are incredibly inconvenient to replace. Instead, opt for updating some cheaper features. Replacing the vanity, for example, isn’t nearly as expensive as it sounds. For just a couple hundred dollars, you can give your bathroom an instant makeover and yourself a break from trying to get out those decades-old stains. If the change isn’t dramatic enough, try updating your light fixture or repainting the walls.