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Your Guide to Home Improvement on a Budget


Nicole Bustamante


April 7, 2022

Your Guide to Home Improvement on a Budget

Spending more time indoors during the past 2 years has made us all realise just how important it is to feel comforted and inspired by our homes. Whether you weathered the pandemic in your childhood home or purchased one of the almost 600,000 homes and units sold in 2021, there has never been a better time than now to give your space a facelift.

However, renovating your home can be a financially daunting prospect. We get it: sometimes all you want is to add a little spice to your space without breaking the bank.

Call us your financial fairy godmother, because we’re here to help you make your frugal home improvement dreams come true! With the tips and tricks below, you’ll know exactly how to improve your space without taking a heavy hit to your bank account.

Focus On the Details

Whether you just want a small refresh or you’re looking to completely renovate your whole home, start by sitting down, creating your budget, and sticking to it throughout the whole experience.

Even some of the smallest changes can make a major difference. If you focus on smaller (and less expensive) details, like getting new accent pillows rather than investing in a whole new couch, you may be surprised at how much you can reinvent your space on a limited budget.

Here are a few more ideas of how you can update your space with smaller changes.

Paint your cabinets in a fresh hue. Repainting your cabinets can add a fresh pop of color to your kitchen and brighten up the area.

Try: For an on-trend color story, try Dulux’s Smoky White or Pre-School Quarter from Bunnings.

Update the hardware on your furnishings. Putting new handles on the cabinets and drawers throughout your house is an easy way to add a personal touch that reflects your style, whether you prefer metal hardware or antique finishings.

Alternatively: Mixed materials are ultra-chic, like these metal and wood handles from Temple & Webster or knobs made with marble and brass from Amazon.

Wood Handle Wooden Mirror

Add some intrigue with a new rug. A new carpet can add instant depth and dimension to your space. Have a specific preference on color, texture, or material? Try designing the rug of your dreams with a bespoke service from Carpet Court!

Our favourite: A jute rug, like these from Zanui, is our favorite way to add an earthy element to any room. If you’re looking for something a bit more eye-catching, opt for a geometric pattern like these selections from Temple & Webster.

Zanui Rug Temple and Webster

Shed some light on the subject. Lighting fixtures can literally brighten any room. Add a new fixture to a dim space or replace an old one to liven up an existing area. We are all about geometric and bare-bulb pieces!

How about: Minimal yet striking, this #000000 pendant light from Beacon Lighting is a perfect addition to a dining room or kitchen. Give your living or bedroom an upgrade with this floor lamp that creates impact in a room from Brosa.

Beacon Light Fixture Brosa Lamp

Modernize your kitchen with an appliance upgrade. If you’re looking to update your kitchen, consider new, energy-efficient appliances that not only elevate the space but are also eco-friendly.

Become an at-home barista with the Breville Barista Express from The Good Guys. Or, take your at-home baking up a notch with a mini stand mixer from KitchenAid. If you really want to invest in an all in one kitchen superstar you can’t go past a Thermomix available with Zip Money!

Breville Barista Express Coffee Machine Kitchen Aid Mixer Thermomix Food Processor

Freshen up with accent wallpaper. When painting is too much of a commitment, stick-on wallpaper is your best friend. Easy to apply yourself and perfect for adding in a trendy print, wallpaper is a great way to give your space a second life.

Find a wallpaper that transports you and transforms your space, like this dreamy pattern for the kids from The Block Shop or this bold option from Wall Candy.

Block Shop Wallpaper Wall Candy Wallpaper

Put your (fake) green thumb to the test. Adding greenery to any space will make it feel serene, inviting, and alive…even if the plants in question are of the decorative variety. Brighten any space without maintenance or worry!

Try: This hanging plant from Big W is perfect for livening up a little corner, as is this guide to faux potted plants from Adairs. Florals more your vibe? You’ll have to take a whiff of this hydrangea arrangement from Temple & Webster to tell that there’s no watering required.

Big W Hanging Plant Temple and Webster Floral Arrangement

Do Your Research

If you’re looking to do a major home renovation project, take the time to think through what changes you want to make, who you want to hire to help you bring them to life, and what materials you want to use.

If it’s a smaller project, consider if you have the tools and skills to take it on yourself. DIY’ing your home means savings on labour costs (and you’ll have more money to spend on materials for the upgrade!). Just be sure not to bite off more than you can chew—a shoddy reno may save you money in the short term, but it can mean more maintenance and repair costs down the line.

If you’re planning to focus largely on cosmetic updates, do your due diligence to find the best deals you can. We recommend starting with Bunnings, Target, Big W, or even resale platforms like Facebook Marketplace and Gumtree. You may have to do a bit more digging to find the perfect items for your space, but the money you’ll save will be well worth the effort you put in.

A refreshed home on a tight budget: it really is possible to have it all! Check out more deals on home decor and furniture in the Zip app, and get ready to make your home improvement dreams come true.

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