Add some extra value to your home the easy way.
Many ask why they would bother upgrading small things around the home like cabinet pulls, light fixtures, and new paint. The short answer is that small improvements like this have a significant return on investment when it comes time to sell your home. This Quick, Cheap and Easy Home Improvements list is here to help you achieve some easy-to-do upgrades that anyone can handle in a short period of time to improve the look and feel of their home.
#1: Create an Impressive Entrance
First impressions are everything. Especially from the street.
How's the Landscaping?
How the front of your house looks from the street must be inviting enough when attracting a buyer for your home. They call it curb appeal for a reason. A very quick and cheap home improvement that will get buyers into your home would be improving the front-exterior part of your home. Prune all branches and hedges that do not look uniform or attractive. Rake all leaves and debris from the walkways and garden beds. Spread the top layer of garden beds with fresh black topsoil and fill in with a few flats of bright, seasonal flowers.
Paint the Front Door.
Nothing screams curb appeal like a freshly painted crisp-coloured front door. This quick and cheap home improvement can easily be done in only a couple of hours, including the trip to the paint store. All you’ll need is a quart of paint and a brush. Since you’ll be removing the hardware, now would be a good time to assess whether it needs to be replaced or polished.
Decorative Moulding & Millwork
Chances are you have decorative moulding or trim on the interior or your home. Why not pull elements of indoor style to the exterior of your home to create a sophisticated look? This will create a lasting impression amongst potential buyers as the first thing they will be faced with is a beautiful entranceway. Frame the front door-surround with custom moulding or millwork and paint to match with the exterior.
What You'll Need
*Chances are you’ll likely need a contractor for this step, unless you are extremely savvy with installing moulding or comfortable installing your own custom-made milled framing for your doorway. Depending on how extravagant the millwork or moulding is you’d like affixed to your entrance we recommend calling a contractor. Although this step may not be able to be tackled yourself, it still is still an easy improvement to make on your home that adds a unique level of character and sophistication. Exactly what we’re looking to achieve for the exterior of your home.
#2: the Bathrooms.
Affordable and Effective Bathroom Transformation Ideas:
Vanity & Sinks
One of the most expensive-but-worth-it upgrades in our opinion.
A new bathroom vanity & sink is a fantastic option for a home improvement with a huge return if you can afford the upfront cost in this “Quick, Cheap, and Easy Home Improvements” segment. A decent modern bathroom vanity can easily be found around $500-$850+ (with top and hardware) depending on the size and style you’re going for. You may be able to get away with a fresh coat of paint & new hardware depending on the age and style you already have.
Buyer’s can easily tell the last time the home was upgraded by the style of the fixtures and hardware. Your crusty calcium-deposited 70’s showerhead is no different. A cheap option to add a touch of class to your bathroom is a new showerhead. While rain head showers add a touch of luxuriousness to the home, buyers do appreciate an adjustable-bar or a handheld showerhead in the home if they are elderly, have children or pets.
Mirrors and Lighting
Make the bathroom feel like a space people will actually enjoy use by updating the lighting fixtures and adding an elegant new mirror. This will make the room feel more spacious and inviting. There’s no universal guide or a minimum amount of light that a bathroom needs; sometimes there’s even too much. It all boils down to ambience. Assess the vibes of your bathroom and try to create a spa-like atmosphere.
Purchasing some budget friendly towel-Bars, cabinet drawer pulls, light-switches and receptacle faceplates are the finishing touches that really make a bathroom look new. A dead giveaway to the age of many bathrooms is the outdated hardware and electrical-outlet faceplates. A quick trip to the hardware store with a $50 bill might be the icing on the cake your bathroom reno needs.
#3: the Kitchen.
Arguably the most important room in the house...
Add a New Backsplash
A new backsplash isn’t as expensive as you think and add’s a huge improvement to the look of your kitchen. Granite, Tile, Stainless Steel, there’s tons of options available and most can be extremely affordable if you do your research and plan ahead and especially if you install it yourself. This isn’t as hard as you might think and if you’re willing to tackle this yourself you can save even more money.
Lighting is Everything
Do you have an outdated chandelier in your dining or kitchen area? A lot of people think that fancy lighting has to be expensive, but a lot of elegant fixtures can be very affordable. On a tight budget? Check online (we love Amazon!) or at your local hardware store for deals. Remember to hire an electrician if you do not have any experience installing lighting or in your home.
Cabinets & Handles
Sometimes, all you need are some new drawer pulls and a fresh coat of paint. You’d be amazed at the cost effectiveness of this small transformation. You can easily afford a few quarts of paint for your cabinets, and along with some new drawer pulls your kitchen will be drastically improved. This can be normally be accomplished over a weekend.
New Faucet & Hardware
A new faucet can dramatically improve the look of your kitchen – it’s one of the easiest and cost effective upgrades to create an impressive space to attract buyers. If you’re savvy or willing enough, a sink will also dramatically improve the overall feel of the kitchen. This is something best left to the expert plumbers, as a new sink will require measurements and basic plumbing knowledge. However, if paired together a New Faucet along with a sink will surely impress.
#4: Throughout the Home:
If only these walls could talk...
Let's Start With the Paint.
Most Importantly... Ask yourself these two questions:
Does my home have any bright or bold-coloured walls?
Am I planning on listing my home for sale soon?
If you answered yes to both of these questions then a trip to the paint store could be the best advice you take out of this guide. We know you love that purple accent wall in the bedroom, but this is for the best. The general rule is to stick with neutral colours. We’ve also covered this topic in our Basic Home Staging Guide which discusses the importance of a neutral colour palette and why (& how) it appeals to a wide range of interested buyers. Quick Tip: On tight budget? You’d be amazed at what can be found in the mis-tint aisle. Sometimes luck will give you almost exactly what you’re looking for.
Now let's look at the floors...
So, we see you like to wear high-heels in the house.
If your floors are looking a little worn sometimes the simple and easy solution is a refinishing kit that is easy for anyone at any skill level to use. A light sand, scrub, and re-coat is sometimes just what is needed to restore your floors to their original finish. These kits are available for both hardwood and laminate flooring and can be handled over a weekend, dried and ready for regular use.
The Fireplace. The cornerstone to any successful date night.
- Paint the Bricks/Hearth A fresh coat of paint will make your fireplace look brand new. Scrub down the bricks on your fireplace with a wire brush to remove all the grime and debris that has accumulated over the years prior to painting.
- New Doors Those used-to-be-back metal curtains might need an update. If a scrub-down doesn’t revitalize your fireplace doors perhaps it’s time for new ones.
- Make the Mantle Pop The mantle should be in pristine condition. Whether it’s painted or an exquisite piece of birds-eye maple, accentuate your crisp clean mantle with a tall elegant mirror or painting and small accent pieces such as some sophisticated candlesticks.
#5: the Exterior of the Home:
Lead your guests with an inviting, natural pathway.
Here on Vancouver Island we can enjoy our yards all year round. Why not make this a feature of your yard? Let it be known that you can enjoy all seasons with a simple path that leads the way through your yard or garden. An understated natural looking path of irregular-shape flagstones creates a casual, welcoming atmosphere to your home. On an tight budget? A trip to a local saw-mill here on the island can land you with a ton of wood chips. Perhaps throwing down some fresh chips around the garden path areas might be a better solution, and certainly look better than an unwelcoming, muddy pathway through the back yard.
Fix the Fence! Especially the front...
If you’ve got a decent sized yard, it might have been a while since your fence has had an up close inspection, especially over in the far corners. Take a peek to see if any pickets are in need of repair. If your fence is discoloured or greying from age a quick power wash (easily rentable) over the weekend would certainly and quickly revitalize the look of your fence. If you have a front gate leading to your home, make sure that this gate is fully functional and in show-worthy condition. New stain, creak-free hinges, you name it. If you need to open a gate to get to the front door, then you should be treating this gate with as much importance and care as the steps taken for revitalizing the entranceway in Step #1 of this guide.