By: Joe McGauley
Credit: Flickr/Jeremy Levine
It's easy to bite off way more than you can chew when you're overhauling your home. It's even easier to spend way more than you intended.
The truth is, though, that you don't have to spend much at all to make a big difference. $50 can go a long way--here's proof.
1. Install a succulent-lined windowsill
What you'll need: Aluminum gutter, soil, variety of succulents
How much: $40
How long: 1 hour
Find a window that gets enough light throughout the day for a succulent to flourish, then cut a piece of aluminum gutter to fit along the length of the bottom and mount it with screws. Fill it with soil and space out the succulents.
2. Paint boring linoleum or vinyl flooring
What you'll need: Paint, painter's tape, polyurethane floor finishing
How much: $40-50
How long: 1 day
Rather than pay a pretty penny to tile over your dull linoleum or vinyl floor in the kitchen or bathroom, make it look like you did by giving the surface an interesting painted pattern. Once you've settled on something, mock it up with painter's tape, and paint in your colors of choice. Once dry, give it a coat of polyurethane to keep it protected and easy to clean.
Credit: Wikimedia Commons
3. Update your cabinet or drawer hardware
What you'll need: Cabinet or drawer pulls
How much: Between $1-5 per drawer/cabinet
How long: Depending on size, anywhere between 30 mins to one hour
Rather than rip out and replace your entire kitchen or bathroom's cabinetry, give them a quick and inexpensive renovation by replacing their drab door and drawer pulls. If you're feeling extra ambitious, why not slap a coat of paint on them too, and try one of these 13 IKEA kitchen hacks?
4. Paint outdoor planters with glow-in-the-dark paint
What you'll need: Glow-in-the-dark spray paint, clay pots, plants (optional)
How much: $30-50, depending on quality of pots
How long: 1 hour
Outfitting your backyard with enough lighting fixtures to keep the whole place glowing is expensive and involved. Instead, cover clay planters with a few coats of glow-in-the-dark paint.
Credit: Flickr/Wicker Paradise
5. Build a Restoration Hardware-esque desk
What you'll need: A variety of lumber, one 2x4-foot pine panel, wood stain
How much: $50
How long: 3 hours
Rather than spend a few hundred bucks on the retail version, put your tool belt on and create this rustic workstation from scratch. Once you've assembled the two sawhorses, stain them and the project panel, and let dry, then place along the wall, and you're in business.
6. Class up your closet doors with mirrors
What you'll need: Door mirrors, paint
How much: $20-40 per closet
How long: 1 hour
Add some imagined extra space to your bedroom by tacking one or two long, thin door mirrors to the exterior of your closets. Once they're mounted, paint their frames to match your room's colors.
7. Create a kitchen utensil/note center hybrid
What you'll need: Pegboard with locking hooks, chalkboard paint
How much: $45-50
How long: 1-2 hours
Keep your clutter out of the way and post important reminders at the same time. Once you've painted and mounted the board, it's as simple as arranging the brackets to suit your specific array of utensils.
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