You might not have a big budget, but that doesn’t mean you have to live in mediocre accommodation throughout your time in Australia. Whether you’re renting your own place, sharing with friends or living in student accommodation, there are many affordable ways to fix up your home. Use a few of these tips to update your place without breaking the bank!
The first step when fixing up your home is making sure you have the space to do it. Channel your inner Marie Kondo and sell, donate or dispose of anything that you don’t need or love. Buy a couple of inexpensive boxes to store old mementos and any items that you aren’t ready to say goodbye to yet. You could even consider buying some storage boxes that easily slide under your bed – these are great for storing seasonal clothes. Your newly clear surfaces will instantly improve the look of your home and will give you the space to add some new touches.
Stick to neutral colours
Bright colours tend to dominate a room and are usually restrictive of any future changes in your taste. Using neutral colours – like white, cream, grey and beige – as your base gives you more freedom and flexibility in your design choices. Then, you can layer brighter textiles and ornaments over your neutral base, and easily and cheaply swap them out when you want to.
Add some greenery
Plants add vibrancy and life to a home. Most indoor plants are pretty resilient and don’t require as much water as outdoor plants. Some popular options include the fiddle leaf fig, Devil’s ivy, spider plant, fishbone fern and the Chinese evergreen. If you don’t feel confident about taking care of a real plant, then consider buying a couple of artificial plants.
A stylish pot or plant stand will give the room a finishing touch. Storage baskets made from natural woven fibre are also a great option for housing bigger plants like fiddle leaf figs and rubber plants.
Artwork doesn’t have to be expensive. Many stores, like IKEA, offer a great variety of inexpensive prints ready to hang on the wall. A good printing store can also reproduce an image for you to frame, or you can print some personal photographs to stick to your walls or pin to a corkboard.
If you’re renting, you may not be permitted to put screws in your walls. If that’s the case, removable hooks, like those from 3M, or suction hooks are a good option.
Change your shower curtain
Changing a shower curtain is one of the easiest ways to improve a bathroom. If you’re renting then your shower curtain has possibly been used by the tenants before you and may be a little grimy! A quick look online will reveal plenty of fun and inexpensive designs to instantly brighten your bathroom.
If space is an issue in your home then utilising an item for two purposes is a great space and money saver. Find a coffee table that doubles as a storage unit or use your favourite vintage trunk as a bedside table. These items add character and practicality to a room.
Make it cosy
Updating your blankets, pillows and rugs is an affordable way to make your home feel extra warm and snug. A new set of bed linen in a different colour or style will completely change the feel of your bedroom. Lay a rug across tiled or wood floors to make the room feel a little more homely. And throw a couple of warm blankets and colourful cushions onto your couches before you curl up for your next Netflix marathon.
Adjust the lighting
There are many stylish and inexpensive lamps available but you don’t have to buy a whole new lamp to fix up a room. Swap your bright white lights for the softer glow of yellow bulbs or simply change the lampshade over to a style you prefer. Candles will make your home smell and look good, and fairy lights can be strung up or tucked into a glass jar to add a magical feel to the room.
If you’re a student then you probably have a lot of books! A small bookshelf will help you organise and store your books. You can organise your books by author, genre or even by colour. If you have some spare space left on the shelf then try adding a few small ornaments or a cute bookend.
Hunt for affordable homewares
Before you start ordering all of your new homewares, make sure that you know where to shop! Don’t buy the first thing you see just because you love it – you may end up paying more than you planned. Decorating doesn’t have to blow your budget and there are so many affordable places to shop. Check out stores like IKEA or low-cost op shops for a huge range of low-cost and stylish homewares!