You really don’t have to be cashed up to begin home improvement projects. Not all projects need to be big and expensive. Sometimes the small ones can make a big impact.
If you’ve been planning some mighty renovation projects, but just feel overwhelmed (oh yeah, we know this feeling!) and don’t know where to start, sometimes just getting the ball rolling with one or two little, budget projects can be all you need to fire up the ol’ motivational juices.
Here, we have a selection of budget projects you can do around your home that can be completed in a day or a weekend. They won’t break the bank, but when they’re done, you’ll get that awesome feeling of achievement that’ll make you want to keep going, and start tackling bigger stuff.
Organise the Kitchen Pantry
This is often one very neglected space. We go through food quickly, so sometimes it seems counter-productive to put certain foodstuffs in . But believe us when we say, when you get in the habit of pouring flour or sugar from the bag into a container, it benefits you greatly. Ants can find it very difficult to squeeze their way into an airtight container, but in a folded down paper bag? You’re practically laying out a welcome mat. Same with our friends, the weevils. Flour, rice, spaghetti and pasta; open bags are just waiting for weevils to get in and lay their eggs. A basic set of containers is all you need to keep these dry goods edible for a long time. Plus, you can add cute little labels to tell you what’s in them.
Plenty of times in the past, we have opened our pantry doors to get an unpleasant whiff of rot. Root vegetables like potatoes, sweet potatoes and onions all need to be kept out of plastic bags so they don’t sweat and go bad. One project we have in our own home for the near future is to hang off the inside of the pantry doors to store these root veggies. We had an awesome set of wire baskets exactly like those in the link at our old house that were big enough to hold heaps of potatoes and onions. We just bent the hanging lengths back and turned it flat against the door to create a deep basket. To accommodate the baskets, you will probably need to make your bottom shelf narrower by removing it and cutting off the width of your basket (so that your pantry doors close).
Light Up Your Garden
If you have trees in your garden, a beautiful way to give the area romantic ambience is to get a few strings of and wrap the trunks and branches. Solar fairy lights are inexpensive and powering them is even more budget-friendly. These babies will light up at night without you having to lift a finger (as long as the panel has received enough sunlight through the day, of course).
Also, , the ones on stakes, are a pretty way to light up a path, a driveway or the edges of a patio.
You can also get , which shine along the step, to give you a bit of light and foot surety when you come home at night.
Create a Garden Path
The cost of this one will depend on how long you want your path, but for most, you’ll get a pretty pathway that you can create in hours (or a weekend, if it’s a long one).
We have had one of for about five years, and it’s still as sturdy as the day we bought it (even when it was left out in the weather for *ahem* a while).
All that is needed is a wheelbarrow, a shovel, a trowel and some concrete mix (or, if you’re making a long path, it will be cheaper to get a load of sand, gravel and cement rather than bags of concrete). You can colour the pavers any colour you wish with a tub of oxide from the hardware store (be careful with the oxide – it stains everything it touches).
If you have a curvy path, you can create a stencil away from your path, then take off pieces and lay them on your path however they fit nicely to create pretty much any shape you want.
Using this stencil is easy peasy – just lay it where you want it, fill it with your concrete mix, smooth it over with your trowel, then pull the stencil off, turn it around and repeat. You don’t need to wait for it to dry before you remove the stencil – just make sure your concrete mix isn’t too runny.
Paint a Room
A $60 tub of paint should be plenty to give a few rooms in your home a fresh new look. Pull all the furniture out or into the middle of the room, then cover it with old sheets, tarps or plastic – or if you wanna go pro, you can grab some to protect your floors and furniture.
Depending on the effect you want on your walls, you can use a paintbrush or a roller. We recommend a good roller for an even cover and to prevent seeing brushstrokes.
Paint Your Front Door
We have seen heaps of houses online and in person where the owners have contrasted the exterior walls and roof with a bright pop of colour for the front door.
The effect is eye-catching and a bit different from a plain old white door, or an aged timber door.
Unless you’re going to coordinate the colour of the front door with other small details inside or outside the house, you won’t need a huge tub of paint, making this project very budget-friendly.
Update Your Front Door Handles
It is a pretty simple matter to change out your door handles. The front door is one of the first things visitors see, and if you have painted the door as described in the project above, a new is a must to complete the look.
As you can see in the link above, there is a massive range of cool door handles you can pick up for a song, keeping well in budget.
Update Your Tapware
A quick way to bring fresh life to your bathroom without breaking the bank is to replace your tapware. The is a good place to start. Often, over time, the head can accumulate a buildup of calcium inside, which affects your water pressure.
If your shower head is old, it may not be water efficient, which could be costing you big bucks (especially if you’re on tank water). Grab a water-saver shower head and pop it in – unless you’re changing the plumbing, it should be a simple matter of pulling the old one out and attaching the new one to the right attachments.
While you’re at it, wrap the attachment points with some plumber’s tape to prevent leakages.
Install a New Letterbox
The letterbox is often overlooked when renovations are underway, even though it is a rather important marking of your home. The letterbox is used and abused, and considering it’s probably the one thing new visitors are looking for to actually find your house, and therefore the very first thing any visitors will ever see of your home, why not update it? You don’t even need to throw out your old one – it can be upcycled, hung in a tree for a bird’s nest or any other number of small projects.
Check out our list of unique mailboxes to get some inspiration, or just head on over to the hardware store and find yourself a shiny, new mailbox. You don’t even need to get a new one – you could use the paint you used on your front door and give the old box new life.
Plant Some Flora
Landscaping can be a huge project that can cost thousands of dollars. You don’t need to spend this much to get some green in your life.
You could follow our guide to DIY kokedamas, bringing the outdoors inside, and hang these around your home for some low-maintenance indoor plantlife.
Grab a or , or cut costs more by making your own out of scrap timber, or old pallets. Line your patio with them and plant some flowers, or a few herbs and easy vegetables like tomatoes, carrots or cucumbers.
Bamboo doesn’t cost much, and can provide excellent, fast-growing screening to deter nosy neighbours. Be aware that if you plant bamboo, you will need to line your bed with heavy-duty plastic or concrete to stop them taking over your whole yard.
Change Your Light Fittings
You don’t have to spend a fortune to change the look of a room. Simply purchasing some new can give a space a fresh look. You could get lost looking through all the awesome choices for wallet-friendly light shades.
And if you don’t want to spend big, you could get creative and make some shades with materials you might have around the home. Again, old lampshades can easily be upcycled for new purposes.
And then . . !
Hopefully undertaking a couple of these little projects will get you rip-roaring and ready to go on the bigger projects!
We’d love to see if you have chosen to do any of these things! Comment below to let us know how your Budget DIY weekend went!