The Loft

The Home Base blog

10 Ways To Make An Impact

Make your home fab without spending thousands


If your place is feeling a bit drab, you’re not alone.

With some thought, research and creativity, breathing new life into your home is actually much easier than it seems.

Whether you’re spending big bucks on new kitchens and bathrooms or your budget allows only a frugal makeover, you can create a comfortable home that reflects your personality.

Picture: Wattyl

1. Set the budget

Consider how much money you can afford to spend on your revamp or reno. However much is in the kitty, it is important to remember that you can make it go further with good planning.

Setting budgets will also help when you start to consult experts. Kitchen renovations can be done on a shoestring with good results but it is also possible to spend tens of thousands of dollars.

If a client came to you with an open budget, why would you design a kitchen that only cost a few thousand dollars. The point is there is always something to spend money on, so set the budget and work within that.

Once the overall budget is set, prioritise the jobs that you want done and then allocate your budget to each project.

At this point, also consider where it isn’t worth investing money in your house. If you have a knockdown and you’re just trying to make it more liveable, there is no point splashing out on landscaping, even if you can save most of it when you do demolish later on.

Similarly, spending money on an extravagant kitchen that is out of place in a home is also not the wisest move because you will never get that money back when and if you do decide to sell.

2. Get bang for your buck

Something as simple as painting the whole house can give you a lot of wow factor, for little investment.

Rich tones are bang on trend at the moment and if you look at introducing even just a few throughout your home, you could be adding value to your property.

Sprucing up the garden can also make a big difference, with little cash outlay required, especially if you are willing to grow some plants from seeds and cuttings or nurture a new lawn from seed.

Other budget-friendly makeovers can include purchasing new linen for bedrooms or culling trinkets and decorator items and then adding new key pieces.

New lounges, chairs or a dining setting can breathe new life into an open-plan living area and lots of furniture sellers now offer Afterpay, so you don’t have to fork out huge amounts of cash at once.

Picture: Adairs

3. Draw from nature

If there’s room in the budget to build a feature or revamp key areas such as kitchens and bathrooms, now is the time to start personalising your space by bringing in natural or handmade elements.

Now, more than ever before, people value a bespoke home.

If you have always loved a certain type of stone, think about adding a fireplace with a stone surround.

If you’ve always adored marble, look at ways to incorporate it into the kitchen or bathroom, even if you can only afford some feature tiles.

Timber joinery or decor can make a space feel a whole lot warmer and unique. Think about wall features, floating shelving, gorgeous cabinets, kickboards under benchtops, or even benchtops themselves.

Every home should have some natural timber in some form, because it’s truly unique and that means a home can have a soul of its own.

There are plenty of ways to bring the outdoors in and with some imagination and planning, you don’t have to spend a fortune.

4. Update window treatments

Dated curtains and blinds can make a space feel dirty and drab. This is a great project that can be done with little disruption to the household and yet it will yield fantastic results.

Shutters are popular because they’re so practical in Western Australia and really do suit our lifestyle. You can further soften the look by adding sheers or layering with a heavier drape.

There are so many fantastic options available for window treatments and having a chat to an expert can ensure you are across all the options and get a professional result.

Picture: James Hardie

5. Work with colour

Having a theme for the overall house will make it feel more cohesive.

That doesn’t mean every room has to match but you should have a palette to work with so the look flows from room to room.

Colour, particularly bright and jewel tones and Australian landscape-inspired themes, has superseded neutrals.

That said, you can still do a lot with a white background but be prepared to introduce some contrasting and exciting accent colours and textures to bring it to life.

6. Do a massive cull

Another cost-effective way to revitalise a home is to do a big clean-out. Throw away junk that has accumulated over the years, or things that are not used.

Consider whether you need six stools at your countertop. Will three suffice? Do you need all those trinkets? Can you throw out spare pieces of crockery, glassware, rarely used appliances and excess servingware?

Because creating more space will make the whole house feel more comfortable, organised and tranquil.

Picture: Limecrete

7. Decorate with plants

There’s a reason indoor plants are back in vogue. Not only are they gorgeous to look at, they also improve the quality of indoor air, filtering out carbon dioxide and replacing it with oxygen.

If you’re willing to give indoor plants some love, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get some gorgeous ones and there is something very rewarding about nurturing a plant and watching it thrive.

8. Implement small changes

If you can’t replace an entire kitchen or bathroom, think about doing a revamp which involves either changing the tiles, the cupboard doors or the benchtops.

Maybe your bathroom would benefit from new tapware. It’s entirely possible to paint cabinets, so consult your local hardware store for information and set about making bold changes.

There are lots of companies which can resurface tiles, doors and benchtops for a fraction of the cost of replacing them outright so do your research and find out what is available.

Picture: The Kitchen Door Company

9. Upgrade your floor

If you love the look of hardwood floors but can’t afford them, consider options such as floating laminates, engineered timbers or even good-quality lino.

All of these options have come such a long way in recent years and some fans of natural timber flooring are even choosing to go with these options because they’re easy maintenance and available at a fraction of the cost of real timber.

10. Ask the experts

At the very least, do your research. Times are a changin’ and the options now available for home renovation are endless.

Nothing beats walking around a centre such as Home Base to see what is on offer. You’ll discover new options and you can explore at your own pace without pushy salespeople breathing down your neck.

When you find something you like, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Talking to the right person might help you save thousands of dollars or achieve a spectacular result that you never imagined was possible.