Sprucing up your home – and setting yourself up to save some money to the bargain – doesn’t take long hours or a lot of dough. DIY master Bob Vila suggests a few worthwhile projects you can whip through in 60 minutes or less:
- Paint a wall – Painting one wall of a living or dining room can add instant style and drama. Choose a color that contrasts with and complements the room’s furnishings – a bold burgundy, perhaps, in a roomful of neutral beiges – and prepare to be amazed at the difference.
- Switch out a faucet – Today’s bold designs can change the look of a drab kitchen or bath. Turn off the water supply, unscrew the old fixture and screw in the new one. IF you add an aerator, you’ll save money on your water bill, too.
- Install new hardware – Stylish new pulls on your kitchen cabinets can upgrade the room’s character, and you can get that new look in about an hour with nothing more than a screwdriver.
- Switch out the switch plates – Replacing boring old switch plates with decorative new ones – think antique brass or a colorful graphic – is a good way to wake up a neutral space or add some fun to a kid’s room.
- Spruce up the exterior – Power washing the exterior of your home reaps a double reward: a brighter look and debris-free gutters. You can rent a pressure washer at many home stores.
- Change the furnace filter – If you haven’t done so for three months or more, replacing the furnace filter will improve both the air quality and the efficiency of the system.
- Stop the squeaks – Get rid of the squeaks in doors and floors that often plague older homes. Start by squirting a little WD-40 on door hinges. Stop floor creaking by sprinkling talcum powder on the offending areas and sweeping it into the cracks.