How to decorate your first home on a very tight budget

Buying your very first house is a joyful time but the truth is that it's never cheap and often there's not much money left for the interior. That was certainly the case for me when I bought my fixer-upper home!

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So, if you want to make the house feel like a home but without spending a small fortune, you should consider the following budget-friendly home decorating tips…

Prioritise your favourites

There are some people who don’t feel at home without rugs or cushions, there are others who need mirrors in every room – everyone has their preferences. Therefore, it’s vital that you make a list with the items that are most important to you and prioritise these when shopping for your new home. Later, once you’ve save up some money, you can slowly incorporate some other objects or pieces of furniture. You don’t have to do it all at once but at least you’ll feel comfortable and ‘at home’ in your new space.

Ask around

Consider asking your friends and family members if they have any spare decorating items that you can use. Many people have pots of paint in the garage and there may be enough to add a feature wall to your room. Plus, any old furniture can be easily upcycled with leftover paint so that they fit your style. It’s a great way to reduce waste so both you and our planet will benefit from this.

Shop second hand

It’s an affordable way to buy the pieces you need and it can be quite a fun process to see what you can find in charity shops or secondhand stores. You might find that it takes quite some time to search out the right items but, if you know what you’re looking for (a coffee table, mirror or desk chair, perhaps) then you can keep an eye out for it wherever you go and eventually you’ll find the right thing for your home – and at the right price.

Once you’ve found the things you need items from flea markets or retro shops, you could use them as they are, or look for some creative ideas on Pinterest. Add a cushion, a cover or a coat of paint – the internet is an endless source of ideas and inspiration, so you can make anything look lovely without having to break the bank.

A quick makeover

If you want to make your house feel like your home, you should consider decorating the walls. However, as wallpapers tend to be expensive, it might be a good idea to opt for paint in the first instance – especially if you’ve managed to source some leftover tins. You can apply it by yourself rather than needing to hire a professional, and it’s a great group activity so you can get friends and family round to help. The best thing is that you can easily redecorate it at any time in the future, but it’ll make you feel more at home in your first house straight away. You could also try painting your front door in a fun colour to make it stand out, just make sure you get the correct exterior paint for the job.

Add some flora

Last but not least, add some indoor plants. They’re are a lovely way to bring some life into any house and they aren’t that difficult to maintain. Sure, you might kill one or two before you get the hang of it, but don’t be discouraged – get a cactus! Also, you could keep some herbs on your kitchen a windowsill and use them when you cook – imagine serving your friends pasta with homemade pesto sauce made from basil you’ve grown yourself.

I hope this shows that it IS possible to put your stamp on your first home without spending too much money. Yes, it might be challenging to live on a budget at times, but it is far better to be surrounded by nice human beings than luxury items! Let me know your own tips for decorating your home on a budget, I’d love to hear how you’ve saved money while revamping your first property. 🙂

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Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in Lifestyle Promotion Studies and is trained in Personal Money Management. She loves to ‘get the look for less’ so regularly shares thrifty-living advice, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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