10 Budget-Friendly Home Upgrades



Try these 10 Budget-Friendly Home Upgrades to see if they put a new smile on your face.

1.)  Change out Cabinet Hardware

The kitchen is the place where everyone gathers, so understandably you want yours to look good.  A full remodel can be cost-prohibitive.  Fortunately, you can add a fresh new look just by replacing old cabinet pulls and knobs.  Choose new hardware that suits your style, faceted glass vintage knobs, or sleek chrome knobs will flatter contemporary decor. You’ll pay under $100 for this upgrade.


2.) Paint the Front Door

Your front door sets the stage for the rest of the house, but if your entry is drab, your home won’t make an impression on anyone who stops by—be they guests or prospective buyers. You can renew the entire look of the front of your house just by painting the door. You’ll pay $50 to $80 for a good exterior enamel. Choose bold blues or rustic reds for a look that’s sure to draw attention, or go with soft tans or grays for a more classic appeal. Don’t forget to change out the door handle, and the bell or knocker.



3.) Paint an accent wall

You don’t have to paint an entire room, in fact, painting just one wall, in either contrasting or complementary colors will give the whole space a new ambiance. You’ll spend less than $40 for a gallon of interior latex paint, and a few more for a roller and pan. Accent walls are welcome in virtually any room from the bedroom to the living room and beyond. Try color coordinating your decor items, such as lamps or rugs, to the new wall color for a finished look.


4.) Flower Beds and Landscaping

Boost up your home’s curb appeal with the addition of flowerbeds and addition landscaping features—easy to build for $200 or less. Look to your home’s architectural elements, such as bricks or stone when choosing the material for the border. View your landscape from the street to determine the best spot for the flowerbed and fill it with rich soil. Plant attractive perennials that last for years, or single-season annuals that offer bright splashes of color—or a mixture of both.


5.) Trade up to keyless entry

Forget fumbling with keys, today’s new keyless locks are safe, efficient, and manufactured to complement your entry. For less than $300, you can purchase a keyless lockset, complete with an exterior lever handle and touch screen, such Schlage’s Z-Wave Camelot Touchscreen Deadbolt. Not only will it replace the hassle of keys, it will improve the appearance of the entry.


6.) Add Outdoor Accent Lighting

Your yard need not fade into darkness after dusk. For under $100, you can install outdoor accent lights to illuminate plantings, walkways, or even the front area of your house. Accent lights, such as Zuckeo’s 6-Piece Low Voltage Set, can be adjusted upward or downward to highlight the best features of your house or landscape.


7.) Switch to a Programmable Thermostat

For less than $50, you can replace your old manual thermostat with a new programmable model that will turn the heat (and AC) on and off using a pre-determined schedule. With a programmable thermostat, such as Orbit’s Clear Comfort Thermostat, you won’t come home to a chilly house ever again. Not only are old thermostats inefficient, they’re blemishes on the wall. Save on energy costs and freshen up the look of your wall at the same time.


8.) Replace Old Draperies

If your curtains have faded over the years, or you just don’t care for the style anymore, you can change the entire look of your room, just by switching out the drapes. Wispy thin draperies add a soft touch and romantic feel, while bold colors and large designs, draw the eye and create a focal point. Try installing drapery rods at ceiling height to create the illusion of taller windows. You can keep the cost under $150 per window by installing them yourself.


9.) Dim the Lights

Bright, harsh ceiling lights make an entire room look stark and washed out, but you can change all that just by installing dimmer light switches. For under $20, you can buy standard dimmer switches, and for around $50, you can upgrade to a smart dimmer switch, such as the GE Z-Wave Smart Control Dimmer Switch, that connects with your home network.


10.) Paint Old Flooring

If your old vinyl or laminate flooring is showing signs of wear—or you just can’t stand to look at it anymore—paint it. While this upgrade requires time and preparation, for around $200, you can buy two colors of flooring enamel and a durable acrylic sealer to apply over the floor when you’re done painting. Checkerboard patterns are traditional, solid colors are classic, but don’t be afraid to try stripes or other geometric designs.