Want your place to look like those home design website images you drool over? Of course you do! Problem is, your budget may not match your design aspirations. Fear not! Making your home look high-end isn’t always about spending tons of cash.
Nothing says “this home ain’t worth much” like tons of disjointed knickknacks, piles of books, and other miscellaneous items that should be tossed or stored.
Go through your rooms and get rid of anything that doesn’t mesh with your personal style is a great first step toward transforming your home from average to exceptional.
Walk through each room of your home and edit items. Make some tough decisions. Sure, you love your grandma’s vintage Chinese vase, but does it really jibe with your West Elm look? It might be time to store it or let it live in another room with similar family heirlooms.
2. Eliminate grunge
You may not have time for intensive cleaning on a weekly basis, but a once- or twice-yearly deep clean is an easy way to make your home look far more luxurious. After all, you rarely see a mansion with dirty baseboards.
Go through your home and search for overlooked areas that have become dirty and downright gross.
Having old tile cleaned and regrouted makes a huge difference in having your bathroom look sparkly and fresh. Best of all: The process is simple and inexpensive.
Get sparkly new floors–minus the refinishing. Try steam cleaning wood floors for an immediate lift to the finish.
3. Add—or rearrange—lighting
Designers use lighting to define spaces and separate rooms, making a small space grand.
Think of your living room—where you might have a reading nook, sofas and chairs for company, and a television. Visually differentiate among the areas by using different kinds of lighting: Add a table lamp beside your cozy reading chair and sconces behind your couch for conversation. Consider a dimmer for overhead lights. Architects and lighting designers swear by them. Installing is a relatively simple DIY.
4. Upgrade your hardware
Don’t have a kitchen renovation in the budget? You can get a similar effect for much less by swapping out old, dated hardware for new.
Tired of your brushed-steel drawer pulls? Try gold, bronze, or even crystal—or make an adventure of it and scour your local thrift store for vintage hardware that screams your style.
It’s not hard to find attractive options in any decor style for next to nothing (a drawer pull, for instance, might start at just $3 or less). For hard-to-find designs, search etsy.
Changing the countertop and faucets is another change that can make your home look much pricier. If you have the budget, exchange your dated sink accessories for something fresh that matches your brand-new hardware.
There’s no simpler way to make an old home feel new than painting. Repaint and choose beautiful colors for an instant makeover.
You can’t go wrong with classy neutrals. Minimalists might love a bright white combined with a bold accent wall; DIY decorators might enjoy a tasteful, sandy tan tone, which pairs well with any number of woods.
Paint isn’t just for your walls: Add some color to your front door, window trims, or even the floor, if you’re brave (hardwood can look amazing when painted white).
6. Focus on the devil in the (decor) details
Does your home feel a little meh—and you’re not sure how to change it? Try vignettes—combine decor items (e.g., vases, frames, and objets) that add visual interest to an otherwise bland area—perhaps a shelf or console table.
Organize your vignette around a theme so that the decor items are unified and tell a visual story. Go around your house and cull items you love that need a new home (see tip No. 1 on decluttering).
Realtor.com | Jamie Wiebe