TNew Homeownerim Richmond writes about home ownership, real estate and the mortgage industry. He currently writes for the Native American mortgage ( ) specialists 1st Tribal Lending.

Men can live in a cave. Maybe not literally, but definitely figuratively. Women, on the other hand, usually have the desire to decorate and turn a house into a home.

It wasn’t until almost a year into our marriage that my wife and I looked up and realized we hadn’t done any decorating. Of course, this wasn’t her fault. I’d simply had been reluctant to do so, mostly because I didn’t want to spend money.

Maybe you’re in this same situation, which is very common, especially when you are a new homeowner.

Or maybe you just want to decorate without taking a large chunk out of savings. Whatever the case, these five tips will help you decorate your house on a budget – turning it into a comfy home – without spending too much of your hard-earned cash.

5 Tips on How to Decorate a Home on a Budget

LampTip 1: Use Lighting to Your Advantage

Whether you have a lot of natural lot, or have to create your own, light goes a long way in establishing the feel of your home. Think about where you place lamps. What sort of feel does it create? For example, I have two lamps in my living room. When they’re both on we get a cozy feeling that encourages conversation. Turn on just one lamp and you have a great reading corner; turn on just the other lamp and it creates a great television environment.

If you’re brave, consider building a custom skylight to let in extra light. This will help light a room during the day and give you a view of the stars at night.

Tip 2: Theme it up

This decorating tip is most popular in bathrooms. I remember walking into my grandmother-in-law’s bathroom for the first time. It was decked out in a seashell theme. It was both simplistic and looked nice. I suggest taking this approach with different rooms in your house; build them around a theme. What makes this cost effective?

When you don’t decorate around a theme you decorate around blank spaces. But when you decorate around a theme, you only need to buy enough to tie a room together. For example, you might only need three “themed” things to decorate the room and tie it together instead of four or five non-related decorations.

Tip 3: Rearrange Furniture

This suggestion might sound like a cop-out, but it’s not – so listen up. It’s really easy to set up your furniture a certain way and never think about moving it around. I’m not suggestion you move it every 6 months, but seriously think about adjusting your format every once in a while. It gives your house a completely different feel, and you might find out you like it. I’ve moved the television before, for example, and found out that the light hits it better.

Tip 4: Paint Goes a Long Way

Use paint to create contrast and depth. I’m not suggesting that you repaint the entire house; that gets expensive. Instead, just paint select portions of the house to bring color to certain rooms or certain parts of a room. For example, you might paint the dining room area a particular color that you feel facilitates dinner-time conversation.

Tip 5: Build Over Time

Take your time. Part of the fun of decorating is the change your house takes over the course of many years. Encourage people to get you this kind of stuff for birthday or Christmas gifts. For example, no one is going to normally buy you a soap dispenser for your bathroom, but if you ask for a special seashell soap dispenser they just might.

Final Word

Don’t let this stress you out. Take some time, have fun and express your personality. You’ll be glad you did so – both because your home will look great and because you’ll still have some money in the bank.

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