Home Improvement Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank! Start With Small Projects and Weekend Jobs!
How do I change my home on a budget? That’s one question we’ve heard time and time again. Transforming your house isn’t done over the weekend. Instead, it’s the cumulative result of dozens of small, affordable projects that gradually mold your home into the beautiful, alluring masterpiece you’ve always wanted. That’s going to a take a lot of work, but you can do it! Just “put one foot in front of the other.”
Today, we’ll talk about 5 of the most accessible home improvement ideas that can add some real value for your home. We’ll be focusing on exterior projects. Afterwards, you’ll feel inspired to go out and start transforming! Read through each one, then pick one or two for your property.
Weekend Home Improvement Projects
Project #1: Brighten Up the Entryway
You only get one chance to make a first impression. While home improvement experts all agree that landscaping plays a critical role in your property’s perceived value, that first impression is made or broken in the entryway. There are a few simple steps you can take to radically change the way people feel when they enter your home.
Start with your door, which should be the focal point of your entryway (and landscaping). Does it pop with color, or does it fade into nothingness when contrasted with the siding? For rustic design enthusiasts, a warm, natural wood staining. For those looking for a more updated look, aim for a paint color that complements your siding and existing plants.
Next come the smaller touches. If your porch suffers from dim lighting, rejuvenate the space with some fresh sconces or exterior lamps. If you don’t want to spring for brand new sconces, look for creative ways to redecorate the lights. You’ll instantly make the place feel more inviting with better light. Potted plants also have that same effect. You can try out various sizes, just don’t make them so small your neighbors may miss them (or worse, step on them). Finish it all off with an inter-seasonal wreath and/or a friendly door mat!
Landscaping (Plant Life)
Project #2: Organize Your Plant Life
What home improvements bring the most value? If you’re searching for better perceived value for potential buyers, landscaping is where to start. Well planned and executed landscaping can improve a home’s value by over 10%! That’s why so many home improvement tips revolve around the front yard.
There’s a couple of guidelines to remember when planning your landscaping.
- Plan a gradual downward descent from your rooftop.
- Make sure your exterior entryway is unobscured by your landscaping.
Your trees are the most dynamic elements of your landscaping. That makes them both your greatest assets and liabilities. Keep them properly groomed will protect your home from physical damage and design snafus.
Remember: we’re trying to keep your exterior entryway the focal point. Your plants should naturally direct attention towards the front door, even if it’s done subtlety. That’s why your flower pots, bushes, and shrubs should gradually rise as they near the porch. If your yard is currently a little bare, you can add some minor shrubs in line towards the entryway. For smaller bushes, you can create a concrete block filled with mulch and vibrant flowers.
Project #3: Build a Beautiful Pathway
Nothing says “Come inside!” like a beautiful pathway leading towards the front door. Homeowners sometimes steer away from this simple project because they feel like they have to buy the most expensive stone to get the job done right. That’s not true. All you need to craft an attractive, value adding path is a plan, clearly defined boundaries, and materials.
Some of the easiest designs to work with are:
- Customized brick and concrete patterns
- Gravel or pebbles, with floating pavers
- Pure gravel path, with stone (or wood tie) boundaries
- Floating stones in mulch
If you want to keep this project as low-budget as possible, look for leftover materials sold by other homeowners. Minimize your future maintenance requirements by creating stronger boundaries for your path. This is especially important if you plan on using gravel or pebbles for your surface.
Project #4: Spice Up Your Windows
Flower boxes add so much color and life for your windows! The best part is that they make easy do-it-yourself home improvements. It’s fun to design your own wooden containers, or you can find an alternative boxing solution at your local antique thrift store. The work can easily be completed without breaking the bank. If bushes obscure the lower part of your windows, you could consider hanging flower pots instead!
Complete the framed window effect by installing some beautiful shutters. While premium wooden shutters can be pricey, homeowners can also produce their own simple wooden designs. Just make sure that your shutters are painted to stand out from the surrounding siding.
Project #5: Add Personality to the Lawn
One of the easiest ways to imbue a bit of personality into your home is with a little lawn decoration. While it’s easy to spend thousands of dollars on custom garden statues and fountains, you don’t have to blow your budget to make your landscaping more inviting. If you have the space, try starting with some cozy lawn chairs. You can even buy simple wooden chairs and paint or stain them with your favorite colors.
Try swinging by the local antique antique sales shop and searching for some cute garden statues. Mix a couple in with your flowers, or place them in a prominent spot by the street/sidewalk to greet passing walkers! If your are blessed with your own sturdy tree branch, top it all of with a quaint but simple wood swing.
lawn chairs, garden statues, fountains, tree swings, miniature picket fence
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Garden Pathways Can Be Elaborate, But Simple Designs Also Offer Considerable Value!
Two last thoughts! Some homeowners come to us and ask “Can home improvement costs be deducted?” While they can’t be deducted, home projects can be added towards your tax basis when you sell your home in the future. This reduces the amount of taxable profit from the property sale. Finally, make sure you know the difference between DIY projects and those that should be completed by a professional. While landscaping and home decor offer plenty of DIY opportunities, utility work, siding, and roofing should be completed by trained professionals. This will protect you from expensive situations of home improvement gone wrong.
While you may have heard about all the amazing benefits of a rooftop patio, most of us are looking for simple home improvement tips so we can complete the work ourselves. At Ariat Roofing, we’re here to help with all your roofing rejuvenation needs. That includes shingle roofing, among many other popular rooftop solutions. Give us a call today at 702-208-4153!