NEW YORK – We don’t all have the money or time to do a major overhaul of our homes but there are a few things you can do to freshen things up without blowing the budget. If you are handy on tools, why not have a crack at some of these ideas to breathe new life into your place.

Enhance the entry

First impressions matter. Invest in a new front door or paint your old one, it can dramatically change the look of your home and enhance curb appeal. Try other easy DIY fixes like repainting the exterior trim, replacing the house numbers or installing new outdoor lighting.

Install a new back splash

You don’t have to go for the expensive tile back splash, try something simple and inexpensive like tin ceiling tiles, or wooden bead board, wallpaper, stainless-steel, chalkboard or magnetic paint.

Illuminating ideas

New kitchen lighting or a new fixture over the dining table is sure to brighten up any holiday meal. Try one of these projects: Make a fabric covered drum shade to match your decor. Install a dimmer switch to make your current lighting more versatile. Use a few cans of spray paint to give an old chandelier new life. Replace or paint the blades on a ceiling fan.

Update the taps

A new fixture in the kitchen or bathroom can add that extra shine you’re looking for. New kitchen taps have a lot more functionality, so the upgrade can be more than just aesthetic. This is a good first time DIY plumbing project to try. Just make sure you shut off the water valves and follow the directions carefully.


Trim the grass and make sure all flowerbeds are freshly mulched and free of weeds. Prune overgrown shrubs, especially if they’re hiding windows or blocking the entryway.

Gutters and fences

Reinforce sagging gutters and straighten crooked fences. Make sure the gutters are cleared of obstructions and the soil isn’t washed out around downspouts. A quick power washing will brighten fences.

Don’t forget once you’ve done a bit of a freshen up, bringing some indoor plants into the house can really breathe life into it again, help to filter the air and fill empty spaces

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