Perfect Do it Yourself Renovations for a Tight Budget

It’s a nice dream to call in the pros and let them handle all your home renovations, but your budget may not fit your wish list. Instead, choose a few simple DIY projects to save you money, and get the job accomplished on time. These ideas won’t cost an arm and a leg, but they’ll get the job done well.

diy renovation on a budget

Make Your Kitchen More Efficient

You don’t have to increase the size of your kitchen to get more out of it. Reorganize and add equipment to make your kitchen more efficient, though not necessarily larger. Replace shelves taking up a ton of space, and add pullout drawers. Make organization easy with hanging pot racks and added storage under your kitchen island.

Brighten Up the Space

If you have a room that doesn’t let in a lot of sunlight, you may be toying with the idea of adding a window or skylight. That can cost a ton, though – as much as $1,500 for one window. Instead, you can add a $500 light tube, which fits between the roof rafters and lets sunlight into your living space.

Update Appliances

Instead of replacing old appliances, give them a makeover. Get new doors or panels for them so all of your appliances match. According to a siding supplier at Great Canadian, you can even flip the panels around – many have different colors on either side.

Buy Salvaged Materials

Habitat for Humanity has 400 ReStores around the country that have lightly used and recycled building materials and fixtures. When you hire a contractor, they won’t work with salvaged items, or even materials provided by the homeowner. Since you’re fixing up your home yourself, though, you can score these materials for a fraction of the cost.

Avoid Recessed Lighting

Recessed light fixtures look great, but they’re the most expensive lighting options around. Not only do you have to buy the fixtures themselves, but you also have to cut the holes and insulate them. Instead, opt for a light that can mount on the wall or ceiling and choose a high wattage. If you love recessed lighting, try to mix and match a few different types of fixtures to keep cost down.

Spruce Up the Bathroom

Moving the toilet is one of the biggest projects you can undertake, but other simpler updates can make your bathroom look great without all that trouble. Replace the toilet seat, and add a pedestal sink to give the bathroom a facelift.

Use End-of-Stock Materials

If you have a contractor you’ve worked with in the past, ask if they have any leftover stock from past jobs. You don’t have to go into too much detail about how you’re doing the job yourself instead of hiring someone, just find out if they have extra flooring, Edmonton siding, or other materials that you can buy from them for cheap.

If you do end up having to hire a professional for a job or two, follow the golden rules of saving your money: plan for a 20% cushion, which will help you budget better, check contractor references beforehand, and don’t start adding on small projects as the job moves along.


Erin Emanuel