Is your home looking a bit stale? Cramped? Boring? It could be time for a renovation. Aren’t those costly, you ask? They don’t have to be! With a few tried and true tips, you could be living it up in a dream space without breaking the bank! Here are some pointers to get you started.

Setting a budget

You must answer this first. Really, what needs renovation? Your bathroom? Kitchen? Bedroom? Everything?

Simple renovations should cost no more than 10% of the home’s worth – although this isn’t a hard and fast rule.

If your kitchen is contemporary but the bathroom is garish, grimy, and mouldy, one obviously needs a makeover more than the other – if not for your health for your sanity. Sometimes, a cheap and cheerful renovation yields good results over a complete remodel.

Cheap and cheerful renovations

Some cheap and cheerful renovations you and your family can try are removing the fronts from cabinets, resanding or repainting them for an updated look. You could even remove old light fixtures and replace them with discreet downlights (and with LEDs, you can save on energy bills.)


Other ideas are adding shelving, building shoe racks or organizers, painting the walls, adding new blinds, planting some new shrubs or flowers, and livening up spaces with accessories such as paintings or ornate mirrors – there’s a lot of small yet elegant touchups you can do to enhance your living space!

Bigger, better renovations

You don’t need to get the wreckers in to ensure you get a big renovation. Partial renovations leave the design of a room intact while working on fixtures and accessories, like the cabinets or benchtops in a kitchen, or retiling the bathroom and adding new showerheads and vanity units. All you’re doing is swapping out old, tired stuff for new, better quality stuff.

These are usually far cheaper than total renovations, which may need structural changes and a raft of tradespeople and materials to get done. Remember to get as many quotes as possible for your proposed design to see how much you’re up for.

Remember to get permits.

If you are getting tradespeople in, you need to make sure you’re not running afoul of council or state laws.


Check what permits you need ahead of time so you don’t land yourself in hot water (ironically, no hot water because you didn’t get an installation permit for a heater!)

How to fund your renovations

There is a perception that redrawing from a mortgage is the best and easiest way to fund a renovation. Isn’t the value of the house going to go up anyway? That is true, but your interest bill will be way higher than other options like a personal loan. If you opt for a personal loan, borrow through an online broker to ensure you get the best deal possible. Remember, every repayment you make gets you closer to zero. Don’t just add more interest pain to the back end of your mortgage if you can avoid it!

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