We could all use a change of scenery sometimes, but we can’t always afford it. In 2018, there were far fewer people moving house than in 2017, a statistic which reflects just how difficult it is to get the money together to move in the current climate.

Luckily, there is a way to get many of the benefits of moving out without moving at all: completely renovating your current home. Here, we take a look at the many ways you can improve the house you live in to make it feel more like that dream home that’s just out of reach.

1. Out with the old…

The best way to get that new house feeling is to replace its contents—new furniture, new fixtures, even new flooring and wallpaper. To do this, you’ll first need to clear out everything you are planning to replace. You can do this bit by bit, room by room, or you can enlist the help of a house clearance firm to do it in one big sweep. Some companies will even factor in the resale value of any items they clear in order to reduce your home clearance costs.

When you’re doing this, it’s important to preserve any essentials that you want to keep. Electricals like TVs, or white goods like washing machines or fridges will need to stay, unless you want to replace them too!

2. Have a vision, and stay true to it

Before you make any actual changes to your home, you need to envision what you want it to look like at the end of the process. The best way to do this is to take a look at current interior design trends to see what you like. Search for images of rooms and houses on Instagram or Pinterest to get some ideas. If you want to get really high tech, download an interior design app and get designing! These apps can help you visualise exactly how your home will appear post-makeover.

3. Only DIY what you can

When most people think home makeover, they immediately imagine themselves in paint-stricken overalls, drill in one hand, screwdriver in the other, wires all around them, floorboards upturned. If DIY is your bag, there’s nothing stopping you living out this fantasy, but for the less practical reader, it doesn’t have to be this way.

It’s best to play it safe when it comes to doing renovation work yourself. One overconfident craftsperson tried out renting a floor sander, and ended up chasing it around their living room after switching it on at the wall without keeping hold of it. Eventually, the sander crashed through the wall.

Avoiding DIY pitfalls like these is important. That’s where professionals come in. You may only be doing this home makeover because you wanted to save money, but spending a little can go a long way. Even if it does cost you an arm and a leg to make sure you don’t injure an arm or a leg, there’s no way it will be as much as a mortgage.

4. Make a timetable and stick to it

We all know someone whose house is in a constant state of renovation. They might have told you about their loft conversion in the summer of 2012, but all they have to show for it now is a gutted attic and some tins of paint. There’s nothing worse than living in an unfinished home. Every time you walk past that wall you never finished plastering. or the carpet you haven’t yet installed, you are reminded of your failure to get things done. This is why you need a plan, and you need to stick to it.

Putting together a home renovation plan can take time, but any hours you spend doing this now will be hours saved during the project. And clearly, it’s much less disruptive for the planning process to be long and drawn out than the renovation itself.

This step-by-step renovation planner from A Pair & A Spare covers everything you’re likely to be doing, and gives you detailed advice on how to make sure nothing falls behind schedule. If things do take a little longer than you planned, don’t panic. Just do what you can to get back on track, and your home will be as good as new in no time.

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