The Advertiser - Real Estate

Give your home a glam facelift on the cheap

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Juliet Love, Interior designer and TV host

A NEW frock never fails to put a spring in your step – it makes you feel vibrant, confident, shiny and new. Well, giving your home a makeover will do the same for your house. In a few simple steps, it will look and feel like a new home. Even if you only have a modest budget of $500, here are some ideas to transform your home from old-fashioned to out-of-this-world!

Paint: If you’re after bang for your buck, paint is the undoubted star of home transforma­tion. At around $30 per litre, it is relatively inexpensiv­e and has big impact. If selling, steer away from feature walls and bright colours. Low sheen on walls, and semi-gloss or gloss paint on trims will give the freshest results. If you can only afford to paint one or two rooms of your home, focus on the main living areas and kitchen.

Ready made curtains or blinds: Choose window treatments to suit the style of window frame, and period of your home and decor. Curtains work well in classic homes but, for a more modern look, wide slat venetian blinds or shutters are the most fashionabl­e. Ready made curtains start from about $30, and blinds from about $60, and these are readily available in a variety of locations.

Soft furnishing­s: A new slipcover for your sofa, as well as some new, co-ordinating cushions will add an entirely fresh look to your living room. You can either purchase a ready made slipcover for around $50, make them yourself for the cost of the fabric, or have them made by a local upholstere­r for about $200, plus fabric.

Artwork: Affordable artwork is much easier to create than most people think, and makes a huge difference to give a room a finished look. Bare walls give a sense of an unlived-in, unloved space, which is not appealing to buyers.

You don’t need to find your inner artist, just find a fabric or wallpaper that inspires you. Buy an oversized canvas, wrap the fabric around and you’ll have instant artwork. One large oversized canvas will work best over fireplaces, lounges or beds. A large canvas hung low behind a bed can also function as a stylish bedhead.

Rugs: As a feature to lift a room, or to hide worn or unsightly flooring underneath, rugs are an economical way to give a room a new look, without going to the expense of new flooring wall to wall. They also help to create zones in large rooms. Acrylic rugs can be purchased very affordably, from about $60.

Flowers, candles and plants: Subtle accents around your home will enhance the overall feeling. Don’t underestim­ate the impact of some fresh flowers prettily displayed in jars or vases around your home. The devil is in the detail with accessorie­s, so small touches like clusters of candles, or a new doormat next to a feature pot at the front door will add that sophistica­ted touch buyers are after.

Have fun with it, and turn your home from drab to fab.

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