Home renovation makeovers or simple decoration projects can easily spiral out of control when it comes to money.
Something catches your eye on Pinterest or in a homes magazine, you buy another mug even although you’ve got 20 already, and soon your home is cluttered with stuff and your bank account is feeling the effects.
It’s a good idea then to do a little planning beforehand and work out where to spend your money most effectively.
Here’s my list of five things that are worth spending a little more for the long-term and five things you can scrimp on and still get the same stylish effect.
What to splurge on
1. Focal pieces of furniture
They’re the focal point of any room and can really make or break a room scheme. You’re most likely to be spending everyday using these hard-working, functional items – sleeping on them, eating, relaxing and entertaining with them – so it’s worthwhile investing in comfort and furniture built to last.
If you’re unsure how your style will evolve, pick out classic, timeless designs that won’t date. That way you can always update them with a new tablecloth, change up the bedding or even give an item a lick of paint for a new lease of life.
Invest in a good quality rug and it will last much longer than a similar cheaper or thinner version that’s likely to snag or stain. Rugs take a lot of wear and tear, so a hardwearing material that’s easy to clean is ideal, especially with children and pets around.
3. Mattresses, duvets, pillows and bedlinen
Our quality of sleep can have a real effect on our wellbeing and happiness. Whether it’s the perfect mattress to ease those daily aches or pains, a good pillow to support the neck or high thread count bedlinen to give that boutique hotel feel, it pays to have a good night’s sleep.
Top tip: invest in two duvets, a thinner one for summer and a thicker one for winter, and store whichever one you’re not using in a plastic box with seasonal blankets and throws you don’t use all year round.
It’s worth forking out a little more when it comes to paint. While cheaper paints may be thin, watery and need several coats to build up the colour, more expensive paints are richly pigmented, offering a real depth of colour and richer hue as well as a smarter, more even finish.
Top tip: keep leftover paint tins or unused sample pots to be able to easily touch up any marks or grease stains in case the colour goes out of production and can’t be matched.
5. Kitchen worktops
If your budget allows, spend your money on a quality, custom-fit stone worktop or acrylic substitute – it will last longer and is less prone to a build-up of water damage than laminate and will make the rest of your kitchen look smarter and more expensive than it actually is.
What to save on
1. Cushions and decorative home accessories
Tastes evolve and one of the easiest ways to update a room is with a few seasonal, on-trend accessories that can be swapped and changed. Smaller decorative items, such as new cushion covers, can instantly brighten up a room and freshen up a familiar look.
But you don’t need to constantly buy new things to get a completely new look, hold onto items and rearrange decorative pieces now and then to create a change of setting without breaking the bank.
Store any excess belongings that are cluttering up your home but you can’t bear to part with at Shurgard and enjoy the peace of mind of a tidy home.
You don’t have to spend a fortune to create a beautiful display of art in the home. Frame posters, collect postcards from exhibitions or display favourite magazines on a picture ledge to give a room a bit of colour and personality.
3. Tableware and glassware
There’s no point investing in an expensive dinner set if it’s going to sit at the back of the cupboard and gather dust. High street stores have all sorts of shapes and affordable designs to mix and match, and uplift those everyday rituals.
4. Garden furniture
Save on items you don’t use all year round such as garden furniture and deckchairs. DIY stores such as B&Q and Homebase have great offers and bank holiday deals on garden furniture sets, tables, parasols and simple decorations around this time of year to help make the most of your outdoor space.
If you’re limited with space or the shed isn’t quite big enough for those loungers, and large sofa-style armchairs that are so popular at the moment, consider keeping them in a storage unit for part of the year to protect them from damage during the winter months.
5. Side tables
While the sofa or the bed is the focal point of a room, you can be a little bit more frugal when it comes to smaller items such as side tables, coffee tables and occasional chairs.
Have a look on eBay for a bargain, browse a vintage market or head to a high street store for affordable items that don’t compromise on style.
So there’s five things to splurge on and five things to save on in the home – what do you think? What items do you like to invest in and what items do you like to seek out a bargain for?