The following is a paid advertising feature for The Post Office.
If there’s one constant on my blog over the years, it’s that I love a bargain and I love being able to save money when I’m doing up my home. I do not have a ‘lottery-win’ budget and so getting creative and looking out for ways to save money whilst still getting a glamorous look is always a top priority. While I’ve often said that a splurge (relative to your budget) here and there is a good idea in any space, for the most part, there are so many things you can do to squeeze the most out of your money.
I’ve teamed up with The Post Office this month on their ‘Spend Well, Save More’ Campaign as one of 5 members of their ‘Save More Squad’, a “crack team of experts to help the UK spend well and save more across food, travel, household bills, home improvements and money management’. Yep, I’m their home improvement expert which I’m incredibly proud of.
This is not about not getting that cup of coffee if you really fancy it – it’s about looking for really easy ways to save money without having to make huge sacrifices. In fact, the Centre for Economics & Business Research were commissioned by The Post Office and they discovered that while many find the process of saving difficult, the average household could potentially save up to £5,950 a year! Through this campaign, The Post Office is hoping to help households better manage their money and reduce their spending.
So, today, I wanted to share 23 different easy ways you could save money on updating your home. Shall we get started?
Home Saving for Renters and First Home Buyers
Victoria from Apartment No 4 is a master when it comes to updating your rental property on a budget. Above, she used a peel and stick wallpaper to give her office a beautiful but totally temporary update.
- A simple cost-effective coat of paint can transform a home. Use neutral shades like white, soft grey or taupe for an easy backdrop that will have longevity. If you’re renting, check with your landlord first before painting and see if they’ll contribute to the cost if you do the work yourself.
- Good quality rugs go a long way to creating cosiness underfoot and it’s something you can easily take with you when you move. Check out high street stores including supermarkets stock which often have well-designed homewares for less than you might think.
- Removable (peel & stick) wallpaper will add pattern, colour and personality to a space and can be removed easily. Not only will you save money doing it yourself and requiring less in the way of supplies but you’ll avoid any hits to your deposit when you move.
- Charity shops are treasure troves for decorative pieces like vases, lamps, art and ornaments that will add character without costing much.
- Look for local ‘affordable art’ fairs so you can get an eye-catching piece for less.
- Make sure you attack stains as they happen! In a rented home, every mark can count against you when trying to get your deposit back so have carpet and upholstery cleaners to hand to save you money in the long run.
DIY Saving Tips
We’ve saved countless thousands of pounds by tackling most jobs around the house ourselves – from wallpaper and paint to tiling, plastering, electrics and flooring. Of course, no one is born knowing all these things. We built up our knowledge and skill over many years but just don’t be afraid to start somewhere. Begin with easier projects and work your way to more complicated ones as your skills improve.
- Don’t spend money hiring in help. In fact, just about any skill can be learned by doing your research first and this is how we learned how to do almost everything on our own home. YouTube has tutorials for every home and DIY hack you can imagine and you can take local classes to learn basic carpentry skills which will save you money in the long run. (Our next big never-done-before project? Laying parquet flooring!)
- Build a basic toolkit. It’ll cost you about £60 but the money you save investing in basics like a tape measure, pliers, hammer, sprit level and set of screwdrivers can make all the difference in the long term.
- If you’re nervous about drilling into walls to hang art, consider using adhesive removable picture hooks which won’t leave any unsightly marks that need patching up when removed.
- Rent rather than buy power tools. While it’s a good idea to have a basic toolkit, things like electric drills or power washers can be easily rented for less.
- You don’t have to buy everything at specialist hardware stores. Basic things like screws, nails and filler can be found much cheaper in pound stores or online.
Save Money By Upcycling
These are cheap IKEA bookcases, spruced up with some trim, paint and leftover wallpaper. You can see how I did these here.
- Consider simple upholstery projects like fitting a new seat cushion to a chair rather than spending money on a whole new piece of furniture.
- Paint old or outdated inexpensive furniture to give it a new lease on life for less. Charity shop buys can be brought up to date with a fresh paint job and some new handles.
- Use leftover wallpaper in creative ways. I’ve used leftover wallpaper to update a set of drawers, line the back of a bookcase and updated some file folders to match my colour scheme in a room.
- Cover boxes and shelving with sticky back plastic for an instant update. I have tutorials for both on my blog! Here and Here.
- Use spray paint to give previously unloved items a fresh new look in an up-to-date colour or finish without stretching your budget. You can see how I updated an inexpensive light fixture with spraypaint here.
Interior Trends on a Budget
Our budget bathroom refresh included loads of plants and some simple accessories which made a huge difference in the space for not a lot of money.
- Bring in smaller accessories or inexpensive art prints in colours or finishes that are new and up to date. A few fresh pieces can make all the difference in creating an up-to-date look for less.
- Look out for stylish pieces like cushions, candles and trays in supermarket home sections – they can be a treasure trove when you’re working to a tight budget. H&M Home and HomeSense are two of my favourite stores for getting really on-trend items for a great price.
- Houseplants are huge news in interiors at the moment and they don’t have to be expensive. Fill a sunny window or corner with a variety of plants for an on-trend look that cleans the air too. I’ve shared my tips on shopping for plants here and how to style with them here.
Cleaning and Tidy Up Tips to Save Money
- Don’t overuse your cleaning products. Cleaning fluids can be costly and people often overuse them as they think they will help keep things ‘cleaner’. Just use the recommended amount instead.
- Make your own cleaning products which are better for your home, better for your health and better for the environment. In fact, multipurpose cleaners and glass cleaner can be easily made at home using water, vinegar, lemon juice and your choice of essential oil to add your favourite scent.
- Declutter and cash in! Clutter is the enemy of a tidy home. Go through your items and be brutal, asking yourself ‘when was the last time I used this?’. Look to sell the nicer items on online marketplaces and you can even make money to put towards those things you’ll actually love.
- Organise your drawers and cupboards. You can DIY a lot of space-saving solutions in your cupboards and drawers using items you already have around the house (like small boxes as drawer organisers or re-using plastic takeaway containers to hold smaller items). Once everything is organised, it will keep you from re-buying things you may already have but have forgotten about.
So as you can see, there are loads and loads of different ways to save money when you’re updating your home! If you’d like some more tips, be sure to check out all of the experts over the coming weeks: Jack from The Bootstrap Cook is covering cooking on a budget, Monica from The Travel Hack is sharing tips on weekend trips and affordable adventures, Ricky from Skint Dad is showing you how do more with the family for less and Iona from Young Money is a personal finance expert. You can also check out The Post Office’s Spend Well Save More campaign here.
What have you done to save money on your own home? Any tips that I may have missed (I’m sure there are plenty!)? Share in the comments – I’d love to hear from you!
Disclaimer: This is a paid advertising feature for The Post Office but as always, I only work with brands that I really like and think you’ll love too! Thanks for supporting the brands that support Swoon Worthy.