Cheap decorating might sound like an oxymoron, but it’s not. While it’s true that a redecoration job can often cost a lot of money, there are ways to bring the cost down if you’re willing to roll up your sleeves and perhaps make a few compromises.
Think Big and Small
How can you make the maximum positive impact on a room at the minimal possible cost? This is a question which you should be returning to throughout your project. When you imagine your ideal living room, for example, plan out what you’d want it to look like if money were no object. Then, once you’ve done that, pick out the top five things you like most from this plan. Now, ask yourself: how can you make these five things a reality with the smallest possible budget?
The aim here is to best optimise your time and money. Your ideal kitchen, for example, might have a £100 toaster in it. But how high is that £100 toaster on your list? What’s the top thing you want in your new kitchen and how can you do it for cheap?
Don’t Go For The Cheapest Option
This might sound like a weird thing to say in a blog all about budget redecorating, as well as a complete contradiction of the previous point, but it’s a well-known fact that the very cheapest option is often the very cheapest option for good reason. And the second cheapest isn’t always the best idea either. You want to save, but you also want to be smart.
There’s some simple logic you can use here. Let’s say that you want to repaint your living room. You could hire someone to do the job, or you could do it yourself. If you do it yourself, you’re already saving a huge chunk of cash. At which point, you don’t need to save the extra ten pounds by buying budget brushes and budget paint. Think of your overall budget. Is that ten-pound saving really worth the lowest quality of paint? Of course it isn’t.
Set Yourself a Proper Budget
This is where prior planning and preparation comes in. If you have a budget of £3,000 to redecorate the whole home, then you begin to see where the smart savings are and where the silly savings are. DIY vs. hiring a painter? Smart saving of potentially a couple hundred pounds. Cheap paint vs. quality paint? Silly saving of perhaps ten to twenty pounds.
This applies to all aspects of your redecoration. You want to save on things which are going to leave you room in your budget to do more redecoration, not save on things which are going to leave you room in your budget for a couple of drinks on Friday.
Trusted Local Tradesmen
This is where it pays to be clever rather than cheap. Sure, you could fit your own sink, but do you actually know how to fit your own sink? Paying for trusted local tradesmen can often cost a lot less than you might think. It certainly costs less than doing it yourself, breaking something and then having to pay to get it fixed. In this case, DIY is the silly saving and trusted local tradesmen are the smart saving.
The Power of Paint
Paint has come up a lot in this post already and that’s because of its cost-effectiveness. With just a splash of colour, you can completely transform a room. What’s more, you don’t even have to paint the whole room. Giving just one wall (or even just part of one wall) a brave new colour or pattern can go a long way towards breathing new life into your room.
Second-Hand & Charity Shop Bargains
Second to paint is the power of new furniture. This can also be sourced extremely cheaply. After all, there are over 10,000 charity shops in the UK and, while some people argue that this is perhaps too many, they are a great place to find furniture.
A new table and a couple of new chairs can be just as cost effective as a paint job for rejuvenating a room and it’s a great way to maximise the use of your money. Be sure not to go for cheap for the sake of cheap, though. Furniture is one of the main features of a room. While it’s a great place to make a saving, it’s also vital to get right.
Don’t Throw That Away!
Charity shops are wonderful but, then again, why not cut out the middleman? Charity shops are filled with old furniture that people have given away. Often, we find ourselves looking at this same furniture and wondering what (if anything) was wrong with it.
So, before you throw out your perfectly good furniture, consider repurposing it. There are some great tricks you can use to turn an old chair, table or cabinet into something brand new. Simply sand it down, repaint it, or cover it with a new material and you have yourself something brand new.