10 awesome home improvements that won't break the Bank

by Team HomeServe |
Painting the Walls

Truth. I’m an HGTV junkie. I love watching Property Brothers, Fixer Upper, Flip or Flop and thinking to myself “how can I make my home more valuable.” I literally have nightly fantasies of ripping up flooring and smashing down walls, all while Drew and Jonathan Scott play with my kids. When I awake, I realize that newly-renovated kitchen of my dreams, complete with a Viking stove, Subzero refrigerator, white subway tiled backsplash and oversized, marble island, is of course just a dream.

When not getting my HGTV fix, you can find me scouring the internet to find tips for home improvement on a budget. Pinterest. Houzz. DIY Network. (Just to name a few of my faves.) If you’re like me, you’ll love these home improvement ideas to satisfy your craving for a home reno without setting you back some serious coin:

1. Give it a fresh coat of paint

The walls, kitchen cabinets, fireplace, front door - you name it and you can most likely paint it. With a gallon of paint costing an average of $25, DIY Network estimated that this home improvement can be done for under $100.

2. Upgrade the knobs

Give your door, drawer and cabinet knobs a new look by replacing the hardware with more decorative options. This is a cool idea for renters because you can easily put the original hardware back in place when the lease is up.

3. Get creative with your organization

Update your storage and organizational solutions in the garage, closets and entryway to give your tools, jackets and keys a more aesthetically appealing place in the home (and avoid the clutter of rain boots, kids sneakers, coats and backpacks in your front hallway – like in my house.)

4. Transform your home into a smart one

Install affordable smart devices to boost efficiency in your home. A Nest thermostat, for instance, costs less than $100 and can save you money on your heating and cooling costs.

5. Fill a plain wall with built-in beauties

If you're handy with wood and a saw, you can build a beautiful built-in storage wall. You can also purchase affordable shelving units from retailers like IKEA, Wayfair and Amazon, and then fasten them to the wall for makeshift built-ins.

6. Brighten your lighting

The interior design gurus at Better Homes & Gardens suggested creating layers of light with accent pieces like pendants, sconces and chandeliers. These fixtures instantly add intrigue to the space, and you can even install them on your own to save on labor costs.

7. Put on the crown (molding)

Crown molding adds polish and value to your home. Even better, you can complete the project in a weekend for about $120, according to This Old House. Head to your local home improvement store for pre-made moldings, which you can always paint or stain to match your home's aesthetic.

8. Add a backsplash

Add style to your kitchen or bathroom with a tile or bead board backsplash. If you choose the right materials, this home improvement project can come in under $150.

9. Refresh the curb appeal

Add some greenery and landscape lighting to refresh your home's exterior. Planting new trees can bring a mega return of your investment. According to House Logic, trees can actually decrease home energy costs and boost's a home's sale price.

10. Upgrade one appliance at a time

Start with smaller appliances - like microwaves, toasters, blenders, kettles and coffee machines - and work your way up to the bigger ones. Keep energy efficiency in mind with every upgrade for better return from long-term savings and increased home value.

Making home improvements is not only fun, but it’s also a smart money strategy. Another smart strategy is to be prepared for home repairs before they happen. See how plans from HomeServe can help with the costs of covered home repairs.