Last updated on August 5th, 2016 at 02:02 pm
Once you own a home, it can be difficult and costly to make and keep everything looking just so. Home improvements, home décor, cleaning and gardening can all add up and put a strain on your budget. But it’s the time of year for getting our houses in order and enjoying both our indoor and outdoor space. How can we do this whilst still being frugal?
The great news is, there are plenty of things you can do to improve your living space even if you’re working to a tight budget. We’ve scoured the dollar stores and pound shops to find 50 (yes, 50!) spare change home improvements that will cost you less than 1 British Pound or 1 US Dollar. Skip your trip to the coffee shop in the morning and you could make a couple of small home improvements instead. Miss that meal out and you could tackle a whole lot of the list below. And when you’re finished, your efforts will make your home a more pleasing place to be every day.
Are you ready to improve your home with the change you’ve got in your pocket or your money box? Let’s get started!
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Budget Home Improvements
Home improvements and DIY tasks can be some of the most costly activities for home owners. But sometimes small changes can make all the difference. Here are a few items you can pick up from your local dollar store, along with the changes you could make to your home:
Whitening pen: these handy pens can help you to whiten your tile grout. Keeping the bathroom looking sparkling and mould free makes it a much more pleasant environment, but stained grout is often hard to get looking new again. DIY stores sell expensive grout revivers, but a whitening pen from your budget shop might be all you need.
Door stop: you can get a simple door stop for small change, but it could help you save big. Pop it in to avoid your internal door handle making dents in the wall – something that might cost you much more to fix in the future.
Down lighting: many dollar stores and pound shops sell LED push lights for small change. These would look great under kitchen cupboards, creating a down lighting effect that can otherwise be costly.
Welcome mat: it’s one of the first things that you, and others see when they step through the front door. Did you know you can get a fresh new welcome mat from your pound shop? There’s no excuse not to replace it!
Tester pot: most DIY stores sell tester pots of paint for small change. There’s enough in one to go over marks and spots on your paintwork, so pick one up and get to work!
What else can I do?
That’s not all. You can pick up so much from the dollar store that will help you make the most of your home. Foam weather strip can seal gaps, WD40 will help you lubricate sticky hinges, felt pads stop your furniture scraping wooden or laminate floors. You can get a leather sofa looking great again with a cheap shoe polish, fix all manner of things with the strong adhesives sold at the pound shop, and get a filler to repair cracks. Self-adhesive hooks, cable ties, and new sink or bath plugs can all be picked up for small change. Spray paint provides an affordable way to re-finish a variety of surfaces.
Is your home looking better yet? Great! Keep going…
Home Décor That’s Cheap & Chic
Once you’ve completed all the fixes, you might want to add a little something to improve the décor of your home. Guess what? Budget shops can help you with that too. Here are some of our favourite ideas on how to spend that small change:
Photo frames: there are a variety of photo frames available from dollar stores. Simply pick your favourite, choose a meaningful image and display it!
Scented tea lights: the coins in your pocket can help you to pick up a pack of scented tea lights. We spotted packs of 24, with a burning time of 3.5 hours per candle. That could offer up to 84 hours of fragrance, making your home smell sweet!
Flowers: if you own a vase, and have some flowers growing in your garden, why not cut some and bring them inside? Fresh flowers can boost your mood and make your home look pretty, so it makes sense to enjoy them.
What else can I do?
You can pick up other decorative items for £1 or $1. Pretty key hooks, paper lanterns, and wall stickers can help to add that finishing touch.
Affordable Storage Solutions
A tidy home is easier to live in, and decluttering can make you feel much happier with the space around you. Budget shops offer some cheap storage solutions that can help you to get everything organised. File holders, storage boxes, over door hooks, dish racks and laundry hampers are all available from most dollar stores.
Our favourite bargain storage items are vacuum storage bags. They help you keep plenty of clothes, blankets or other fabric items stowed away taking up minimal space.
Getting Things Spic & Span With Small Change
Now you’re all tidy, how clean is your house? Clean items and appliances will work better and waste less energy, and a clean house always looks good. Keep on top of everything with some cleaning products you can pick up for next to nothing:
Carpet shampoo: it might be a little more work, but rather than hiring an expensive carpet cleaner, you can pick up a shampoo from the budget stores and get your carpets clean again.
Washing machine cleaner: cleaning your washing machine can help prolong its life and keep it running properly. Get a cleaner from the pound shop and run it through the wash cycle.
Light fittings: you might not need to spend anything to clean your light fittings, but its well worth doing. Not only will a clean light boost the whole room by being brighter, it won’t waste energy like dirty ones do.
What else can I do?
Dollar stores and pound shops have plenty of cleaning supplies available. Try out a magic eraser, mould & mildew remover, glass cleaner, dishwasher cleaner, drain un-blocker or oven & grill spray. You’ll have the place sparkling in no time.
Money Saving Gardening Ideas
The house is looking good, but spring is here, so it’s the season to start spending more time outdoors. What state is the garden in after the winter? Let’s be honest, it probably needs sprucing up a bit. But what to do if there are only a few coins left in your pocket? Try a few of these:
Seeds: packs of seeds come cheap. Fully grown plants don’t. If you’re prepared to put in the time and effort, you could grow yourself a blooming garden.
Lighting: solar lights don’t have to cost the earth. Visit the budget stores and find some to suit your garden.
Flower feed: if you already have some flowers in the garden, make sure they stay healthy with some flower feed.
What else can I do?
There’s so much more you can do to update your garden with budget items. Get plant clips to maintain healthy growth, re-seed bare patches on the lawn, get a budget wire hanging basket to plant up, hang a dollar store wind chime, and add some edging. You can attract wildlife with a bird feeder or deter garden problems with pest or weed killer. With a bit of work and a few small coins the garden could be looking tip top.
Did you know that the dollar store could offer so much scope for improving your living space? We hope this has inspired you to make some small, budget changes to make your home more comfortable. Have we missed anything? Leave us a comment to tell us about your best budget home improvements.