How to do Home improvements on a budget
Quick steps to fixing up for less
Frequent Home Improvement Stores
This is a trick I learned while we remodeled my own home. By default we spent a lot of time at Home Depot. We were able to save a lot of money by browsing the clearance areas of the store every time we were shopping (and it was almost a daily occurrence for a while). If you don't have time to visit your local home improvement store weekly, pick key times of the year when they are switching over merchandise, which is typically when seasons change - January, April, September. YAY! Savings bonus tip - we noticed that my local Lowe's turns over their merchandise more frequently than Home Depot. So you might find the same situation and potentially a better selection at your local Lowe's store.
Another tip when working with your local supplier - ask if they offer discounts for bulk purchases or contractors. For example, Home Depot has a bid desk that you can use for larger purchases (i.e. windows or flooring) where they compare prices across the country and give you the best price.
Get Inspiration from the Fancy Showrooms Then Shop Online
It's always a great idea to walk through the home improvement showrooms in your area. I know the displays always helped me figure out what I wanted to do in my house, especially when I got overwhelmed with having to make too many decisions at once. Not to mention there's no substitute for being able to see something in person. However, before you decide to purchase anything, go home and search for the items online. You might be able to find even high end items at a significant discount.
Whenever possible, consider re-using materials you may already have. We all watch HGTV and have seen this done. This can lead to a really cool kitchen table, an interesting conversation piece or even stretch your budget that much further. For example, it is much cheaper to purchase new cabinet doors than full cabinets. If you do not have anything to reuse, you can also consider buying them second hand. This is a great way to add that personal and unique touch to your home!
Home improvement in general takes time and a lot of patience. And if you're trying to do it on a budget, it will require perseverance as well. You won't be able to get everything done on your list in a week. A hard lesson I learned during our massive renovation was nothing happened in the blink of an eye and there were always pitfalls along the way. In fact, our 6-9 month renovation took over 2 years! Focus on the task at hand and trust me, it will all be worth it in the end.