Skip to main content

Decorating on a budget: 5 inexpensive upgrades designers swear by

Your home is your sanctuary, a place you want to keep looking fresh and well organized. Home decor plays a huge role in that, but what if you’re decorating on a budget?

Costs for home decor can be pretty pricey these days, depending on what you’re looking for. Whether you want more wall art, throw pillows, a new throw rug, or to switch up the furniture, the price tag is often a big factor in what we end up buying. Lots of contemplation goes on in the home section of any local department store, to say the least.

Related Videos

To help ease any financial stress, we asked expert Gabija Antanaitytė, an interior designer at Planner 5D, for her best advice for decorating on a budget. Here are her top five suggestions for inexpensive ways to upgrade your home decor.

retro living room with curved coffee table and blue sofas

Use what you have

We understand the desire to revamp your home design. Maybe you’re sick of the color scheme or tired of certain patterns. However, before changing absolutely everything and buying multiple brand-new pieces, it’s worth taking a good look at what you have.

“Sometimes when we are living in the same place, we don’t recognize the nice furniture we have,” Antanaitytė says. “It ends up covered with dust or everyday items.”

Tidy up and organize your furniture, dust everything off, and get a better look at the home decor you’re working with. Can it be moved or repurposed, perhaps? This should be the first step in budgeting for your new home decor. Getting creative about it could definitely save you money from the get-go.

“Just do some cleaning and add slipcovers on existing furniture, repaint it, or change handles and tops,” Antanaitytė says. “In a while, it will look new and easily fit into a new home decor style.”

Look for sales

It’s tempting to go for high-end furniture and decor when redecorating. Of course you want your home to look the best it possibly can, but there are ways to do that on a budget. 

Shopping sales is the smartest way to get the home design pieces you love for a lower price. Keep your eyes peeled for online sales as well as in-store specials.

“When they want to renew their home, many people go shopping for the most expensive items,” Antanaitytė says. “However, you can always look online for cheaper versions, sales, or discounts. If you have plenty of time, you can easily craft everything by yourself, saving more money.”

Accent wall

If your budget is super-tight and you can’t afford new items, one bucket of paint should suffice. Antanaitytė suggests creating an accent wall to completely change the atmosphere of a room and make it feel new again.

“Painting one wall as an accent or turning it into a gallery will give a fresh look and vibe to your home,” she says.

Rearrange furniture

In addition to painting an accent wall, moving some furniture around to different parts of the room or house is an innovative way to redecorate on a budget. It may take a bit of time and effort, but it won’t cost a penny out of your bank account.

Just changing a few items can do the trick, Antanaitytė says. “Maybe an old sofa was facing the window. Then just paint one wall as an accent and move the sofa to face the center of the room. Hang some pictures on the accent wall. And there you have a focal point of a room.”

Visit the flea market

Antanaitytė calls the flea market one of the best places to find awesome vintage home decor items. When in doubt, if you’re looking to redesign a room for cheap, flea markets or thrift stores have lots to offer.

“You won’t believe what people throw away. You can find plates, vases, furniture, and plenty more items that only need a few touches to become iconic,” Antanaitytė says. “Maybe the vase needs to be repainted from white to black. Maybe the coffee table only needs to have wooden legs replaced by metal ones. Use your imagination.”

Decorating on a budget requires a little out-of-the-box thinking, and your wallet will thank you for it. If you’re looking to spice up your living space and bring new life to your interior design, start by cleaning and assessing what you already have. Then move on to inexpensive options, such as finding sales on furniture or shopping a flea market.

Your house redesign can cost close to nothing if you follow our expert’s advice on cleaning, rearranging furniture, and creating an accent wall. These ways to upgrade your home decor are proof that you don’t need a huge budget to design a great living space.

Editors' Recommendations

Terracotta is a versatile color: How to decorate with this amazing hue
Here's how to incorporate and choose colors that complement terracotta
Bedroom decorated in terracotta

For the past several years, neutral colors like gray and off-white have been the standard for interior decorating. While gray and white are easy colors to match with and build onto, they can come off cold and lacking in character. Looking to add some originality to your interior decor? Terracotta is the new neutral color if you’re over those bland grays and whites, and it'll give your home a warmth and elegance that you didn’t know you were missing.

Think it won't go with anything? Think again, because there are more colors that complement terracotta than you think. For design ideas and ways to decorate with terracotta that go beyond seasonal decorations, read on -- we’ve got some great ones.

Read more
Modern updates for your old kitchen that won’t break the bank
Inexpensive ways to update your kitchen in the new year
Stylish pink kitchen interior with dining table and chairs

The kitchen is the gathering place of a home. It's where we reconnect at the end of a long day, entertain family and friends, and often spend time working and preparing meals. If your kitchen is in need of a facelift in the new year, but you don't have a large budget to spend on completely renovating it, you just may be in luck. There are plenty of ways to design old kitchen cabinets, decor, and furniture that can pack a big punch.

Inexpensive kitchen updates are easy to find if you do some homework. First, you need a broad idea of exactly what type of look you're going for and make your plans around that. Without an overarching vision, you may find you can't quite land on what to replace and in what order. Here is some inspiration to get you moving in the right direction. Regardless of your style, these items will immediately breathe new life into your old kitchen.

Read more
6 easy ways to pull off art deco interior design
From geometric patterns to luxe statement pieces, here's how to make art deco design work in your space
Green wallpaper with pink art deco sofa design

Art deco interior design flourished as an unconventional design aesthetic in the 1920s and 1930s. The style stood out amid the avant-garde trends at the time, by leaning into a more simplistic and minimal visual approach. And as we enter a new era in home design, a resurgence of past influences is making its way into our spaces. As a result, homeowners are looking for nostalgia and inspiration from previous design styles.

So today, we’re diving into some of the key components of art deco decor. If you’re looking to participate in this vintage-inspired trend, here are six vital elements to include in your space.

Read more