DIY Projects for Your New Place

Simple Ways to Update the Look of Your Home

Whether building a new home, moving to a new house, renovating an older dwelling, or just trying to make a current place more “you,” DIY projects can really make an impact. But sometimes your mind’s canvas goes blank on what to do and where to start. It happens to professionals and amateurs alike. Good news is there are several ways to fix it! Use this guide to walk through the steps for planning DIY home projects.

Person painting their house doing DIY home project


Get Inspiration

Here are some popular places to get inspiration for a DIY project. There are usually ways to take a professional idea and turn it into a homemade masterpiece, so don’t be afraid to dream big!

  • Magazines. No matter your aesthetic, there’s likely a decorating magazine to match. Some of our favorites include House Beautiful, Better Homes and Gardens, Dwell, Metropolitan Home and Country Living. Browse a local bookstore or online subscriptions to find one that fits your style.
  • TV shows. Almost every channel has a home show. Be sure to keep realistic expectations about the budget and time required to replicate those ideas in your house.
  • Design books and blogs. Experts often write about their work. Look online or at the library for books that pique your interest.
  • Online design boards. With a quick search on sites like Pinterest and Houzz, you can find inspiration for DIY home designs and save them for later.
  • Tutorial websites and videos. When it comes to finding the steps to complete projects, there are endless websites, blogs and videos with the exact process. Search online for the things you’re looking for, like “DIY headboard” or “Painting interior walls” to watch others explain the process.

Set a Budget

Once you have some plans in mind, it’s important to establish a budget before you start any projects. If you don’t have a lump sum to spend all at once, figure out how much can be set aside each month. Either do one small task at a time or save up for the bigger jobs.

Impactful changes don’t have to break the bank! We have a room-by-room breakdown of budget decorating ideas that cost less than $50 each.

Are DIY home projects worth the investment?

Did you know updates can increase the value of a home? While the complete overhauls on TV make for great entertainment, most houses only need a few updates to add substantial value and uniqueness. Doing these projects yourself can save money — and be fun! Each project will yield a different result, so focus on the tasks that pack the biggest punch if you’re working with a tight budget. 

Make Changes to the ‘Bones’

Have you ever heard the saying “The house has good bones?” That means the structure (the flow, the flooring, the walls) are solid. But if they’re not, these are a great place to start with DIY projects. Before honing in on smaller decorative DIY updates, take a look at the foundation of the room — the flooring, the paint and the fixtures. A few simple changes can have a significant impact on any space. Consider a fresh coat of paint or even a pop of color on an accent wall, updating hardware to a more modern finish, or replacing light fixtures and switch plates.

When looking at flooring, you’ll want to think about the amount of maintenance you’re willing to do and the amount of mess you’ll make. In a child’s playroom, for instance, you may want something that’s easy to clean like vinyl flooring. Also, certain types of flooring require more regular maintenance than others. Some tiles, stones and hardwoods may need to be treated with sealant, light-colored carpet may benefit from stain guard, and vinyl and linoleum may require waxing. While DIY flooring is likely a bigger expense to save for, it can change the whole look and feel of a room.

Interior Design

Once you’re happy with the basics, focus on the room décor. You can do DIY projects on anything from furniture to storage solutions. If you have a spare room, transform it into a useable space, like a craft room, office or playroom. You can DIY wall art, furniture, soft goods (like pillows) and shelving systems. Instead of making the spare room a dumping ground for random items, make it into an area you’ll love to use.

Update the Exterior

Sprucing up the exterior can add value by improving the look and feel. A bright front door, some greenery and a good cleaning can help with the home’s first impression. How does the garage door look? If the garage door doesn’t work well or has significant damage, replacing it can be worth it. If you just want to improve the look and feel, installing a carriage door kit can make it more appealing. Check out this post for several other easy curb appeal projects.

What DIY project are you planning?

We’d love to hear more about your DIY home plans! Share them with us in the comments below!