1. Update light and electric sockets
Over time, the plastic of switches and sockets takes on an unsightly yellow that can really date your décor. Replacing the light switch and electric socket surrounds/covers won’t break the bank. To find an exact match, take one of your covers to an electrical wholesaler.
2. Go to garage sales and second-hand stores
The words ‘second-hand’ or ‘pre-owned’ tend to make us take a step back. With a bit of creativity, some paint, and a friend who’s familiar with basic carpentry, it’s easy to turn a dated unit into a statement piece.
A quick google search is all you need to find out how to build or transform any piece in your household yourself. You can find guides on building shelves, repainting and restoring furniture, swapping upholstery, to building structures like pergolas.
For example, this article by diyncrafts.com features 40 brilliant DIY Shelves guides by different experts.
If you’re new to this kind of work, we’d recommend getting a friend!
4. Barter and trade with your neighbours
Don’t have the tools to do an upgrade or DIY project? Ask neighbours if they can lend you their tools. Who knows, you may yourself have (or know someone who does) something your neighbour would like to ask for in return!
5. Green up
There’s a reason why a view makes a property’s price skyrocket. Nature is the best interior designer! We value being connected to nature in our homes, and people are happy to pay more for homes that have a view, are next to the water or a park.
But there’s no reason you can’t make your own home the view. Plants inject colours into your home, clean the air, and bring with them a plethora of benefits to your health. Between the soil and getting the right pots, it can be a little time consuming at first, but it’ll be worth it once your home starts to look like a garden. Join this Facebook page run by Maltese gardeners for support!
6. Hire a designer
Even if you have €100 to spare, it’s still worth spending it on a designer – just their advice can help you better your home more than any item you purchase at a store. Even if it just a conversation and a couple of sketches, they can help you where to look, what to get, and how to go about improving your home steadily. They can:
- Help you create a precise budget around what you want to achieve and the resources (money, the furniture you already own) you have access to.
- Figure out what’s worth spending your money on.
- Identify a colour scheme that resonates with you
- Work with you to restore and redesign furniture items you own that might have lost their lustre
- Transform your space with crafty illusions, such as the addition of curtains and mirrors to play with light and spatial perception.
- Take you to the best garage sales on the island and help you discern the wheat from the chaff
- Learn how to start greening up your house without incurring too many costs or obstacles.