Inexpensive Decorating Tips to Change the Look of Your Home

Maybe you’re trying to sell your home. Maybe you just bought a new home and the interior hasn’t been updated since the ’70s. Or maybe you’re just plain ready for a change.  

When money is tight, the last thing you want to do is go out and spend a ton of money to remodel your home.

If you use a little creativity, you’ll be able to stick to your budget yet give your home a whole new look.

First Steps to Home Decoration

First, make a list of what you’d like to change. Take a good look at whichever room you choose to tackle first.

Consider the furniture, the walls, the flooring and even the ceiling. Take a look at the color scheme. Check out fixtures, like lights and fans, and window coverings.

Then, think about how you want the room to look and feel. Think of things you can change, add to or subtract from the room to make the transformation.

Head down to your local home improvement store and take a look at what they offer, and make sure the items you want will fit into your budget.

Here are some examples of what you can change in different rooms of your home.

The Foyer

Paint. This is the most drastic change you can make here.

Since this is the first “room” a guest sees when they enter your home, you want it to reflect the style of your home and make your guest feel comfortable.

Consider hanging a picture in a prominent place, or setting up a small table or pedestal and placing a vase of fresh flowers on it.

Dining Room

This is the room where families come together and share stories over meals. You want this room to feel comfortable.

Again, painting is an inexpensive way to change the look of this room, but you can also add chair rail or crown molding and paint it a complementary color.

Careful, though: these things can get expensive; perhaps these options are best if you have a smaller dining room.

You can replace a gaudy chandelier with attractive, indirect light, like recessed lighting or carefully aimed track lighting.

Living Room

Sometimes referred to as a sitting room, this is a room without a TV, where homeowners can relax and read a book or listen to music.

Buying comfortable furniture is a good idea; consider buying a gently used sofa from a second-hand shop and putting a nice slipcover over it.

If you’re fortunate enough to have a fireplace, adding a screen or some other type of hearth decor can dress it up a bit.

Lighting is key here–you don’t want harsh overhead lights glaring down at you and your guests. You can buy an inexpensive floor lamp or install recessed lighting in this room. Buy a ceiling fan to provide light and add to the look of the room.

Family Room/TV Room

This room must be functional, so the position of furniture is key.

Move the TV to a different area of the room, then arrange the sofa and loveseat in view of it.

Place your coffee and end tables in reach of the couch. If you have other furniture, like DVD shelves, place them strategically as well.

If there’s really no other way to arrange your furniture, consider adding decorative rug or hanging new pictures on the walls. Chair rail also looks great in this room.


The least expensive options here include replacing your toilet seat (or the whole unit), replacing your sink fixtures and changing the shower curtain.

Shop around for the sink fixtures, if you want to go this route, and choose wisely, since upscale brands tend to be quite costly.

You can also buy new towels and a new bath mat to freshen up the room.


The hallway is a great place for faux finishing a wall or two.

This involves using a special roller or rag to paint a texture or pattern onto a wall. 

You can also hand-paint it to create your own look. The only extra costs associated with faux painting are for the brushes, trowels or rollers you choose.

Master Bedroom

You have a lot of options here. Take advantage of furniture sales to buy yourself a new bedroom set.

Alternatively, look for just one additional piece of furniture to use as an accent, like a mirror or headboard and footboard set.

Again, rearranging the room works well. Picking out a new bedspread and new curtains can really brighten up the room (or darken it, if that’s what you’re going for).

Guest Bedroom

If you host guests frequently, you may get sick of seeing the same thing every time you clean the room.

Replacing the comforter and curtains is an easy change to make.

Kid's Room

Children have ever-changing desires, so what they want one day could be the opposite of what they want the next.

Try to make changes they’ll appreciate over the next few years, instead of something trendy that they’ll hate in a month.

Stick with painting and changing the pictures on the walls until they’re old enough to make decisions and stick with them.


The most remodeled room in the house doesn’t necessarily need to be remodeled. 

Changing light and sink fixtures as well as rearranging your counter space can drastically change the appearance and function of your kitchen.

Consider putting in a ceramic tile floor if you currently have linoleum to update the style.

Ideas That Work in Any Room

You can replace beige sockets, switches and switchplates with white ones for a clean, modern look.

Remove any old wallpaper; paint to freshen up a room or give it a whole new look. 

Scrape popcorn from older ceilings and apply an orange peel texture to it; this gets rid of that ’70s look.

Buy faux wood blinds for your windows; these come in white as well as an attractive wood look. Replace old aluminum air registers and intakes with white or wood ones.

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