[endif]-->[endif]--> The Top DIY Home Improvement Projects That Won't Break the Bank | Payoff Life

If you want to update your home without taking out a second mortgage, here are easy DIY home improvement options for every room!

The amazing part about DIY home improvement projects is they don’t cost you as much money as many alternatives, plus can actually be fun — especially if you work on them with your partner or a friend. And bonus: You can sometimes increase your net worth by updating your home. Why is that? Home projects, in general, provide a solid return on investment.

Think about it like this, if I make my home more appealing to myself, chances are other people will find it more appealing as well. People pay more for what they admire. Even something as simple as a minor bathroom remodel has an average return on investment of 102% according to FrontDoor.com. Consider that an extra surge of motivation to turn off HGTV and actually get your hands dirty.

Let’s get started on those DIY home improvement projects to make your home more beautiful, livable and valuable!

Kitchen DIY Renovation Ideas

Normally the kitchen is considered the most expensive room in the house to renovate. But don’t let that put you off from improving the epicenter of your home. If you keep the layout the same, you can greatly improve the look and feel of your kitchen without breaking the bank. Start by looking at the big items you’d like changed.


If you completely hate your cabinets, they are easy to remove. After you measure your current cabinets, order new cabinets from a company like IKEA. You may roll your eyes at the thought of IKEA, but read this article to see how IKEA cabinetry is actually high-quality and easy to install. You can even sell your existing cabinets to recoup some funds. Instead of replacing your cabinets, try:

  • Refacing them
  • Only replacing the doors
  • Painting or staining your existing cabinets
  • Replacing the hardware (handles and hinges)

Updating your backsplash has never been easier than it is today. There are many peel-and-stick tile backslashes available, and they are super easy to install.

  1. Buy ready-to-use kits, available at most home improvement stores
  2. Peel the film off the adhesive side of the tiles and apply to the wall
  3. Once the tiles are adhered, spread grout across the entire tile surface, making sure it gets deep in the gaps
  4. Take a sponge and wipe off the thin layer of grout that is sitting on the surface of the tiles

Watch this video for some visual help. If you want to get creative, you can also repurpose wine corks as a backslash, use chalkboard paint, or even use laminated photos.

Open Kitchen

An open concept kitchen is very popular today. However, that can cost big money. Instead of tearing down walls, see if there are any doors you could remove, perhaps the doors between your kitchen and dining room. This can be done with 5 minutes, a screwdriver and a space to store the old doors.

Bathroom DIY Renovation Ideas

A bathroom is traditionally another expensive room to renovate. However, these DIY home improvement ideas are far from budget-busters.


Buy a new showerhead. Not only can this transform your shower experience, it can save money in the long term. Many modern low-flowing showerheads offer a better experience while using less water.

Shower Doors

Don’t replace your shower doors. If you have older shower doors, they have probably gone milky with age. Instead of replacing them with new doors, give them a tough cleaning using baking soda and vinegar to see them shine like new.


If your bathtub is in good shape but its beauty has faded, consider refinishing. You can reglaze a bathtub to a like-new finish for $200 to $300.


The convenient thing about bathrooms is they are usually small, which means counter shapes and sizes are pretty universal. Instead of having a new custom vanity installed, you can almost always find a premade one that will fit. This saves on time and expenses — the two biggest concerns for any home remodel project. For the easiest possible solution, buy a counter with a built-in sink. That will eliminate having to caulk a new sink.

Bedroom DIY Renovation Ideas

It may be true you spend most of your time in the bedroom with your eyes closed, but that doesn’t mean it can’t look outstanding while your eyes are open.


Accent walls are very popular DIY bedroom updates. Paint a contrasting color on two of your bedroom walls while leaving the other two walls a neutral color. Make sure they are opposing walls, usually the most narrow of the four walls. Not only does it make the room more interesting, it tricks your eyes into thinking the room is larger. Pro tip: Avoid using red as it makes our minds hungry and restless. You probably don’t want to be craving a midnight snack each night.


Your closet doors probably take up quite a bit of wall space. Why not make them look worthy of the space? Add mirrors to make your room feel larger, or some art to add a little pizazz. As you move into the closet, add creative built-in shelving units or track lighting to brighten your wardrobe. Creating a custom closet takes little more than a plan, power saw, hammer, lumber, nails, paint (optional), and plenty of shoes and clothes to fill all the space!


In the bedroom, you probably spend a lot of time looking at the ceiling. Why not add something interesting to it? Maybe some style to compliment your newly designed doors by adding an intricate light fixture. Consider installing a ceiling fan.

Entry Way DIY Renovation Ideas

Whether you live in a stand-alone house or an apartment, the entry way is one of the most important areas of your home. It’s the spot where you welcome guests.


Since this room gets so much activity, consider upgrading your flooring to a hard-wearing flooring. You have many DIY options available. Vinyl or laminate flooring is your cheapest option. It’s also easy to clean. However, it’s generally not as durable as solid surfaces. Even though these budget floors try to look genuine, you can always tell when it’s cheaper flooring.

Since the entry way is usually fairly small, consider splurging on quality materials. Bamboo is a great option if you’re looking to replace the floor completely. It’s one of the harder and more durable flooring options, is not too expensive and is environmentally friendly. Bamboo grows quicker than the time it takes to think of a metaphor for how quickly bamboo grows.


Adding storage to an entryway is a fantastic way to increase the practicality and appeal to your home. Just like the custom shelving in your bedroom, you can also make the storage units yourself. They can be bookcases, shelves or even double as benches. Maybe consider adding stylish coat racks as well.

Living Room/Family Room DIY Renovation Ideas

The renovation of a living room or family room can be quite intimidating. These rooms offer so many DIY possibilities.


Although popularized in the 1970s, people now look down upon popcorn ceilings (even though they’re part of the ceiling). If you have popcorn ceilings and don’t like them, you can get rid of them with just a handheld scraper! Yes, the texture will scrape right off. Remember to cover or remove everything from the room before you begin — it’ll get very messy. Paint the ceiling once you’re finished.


How’s the light? Consider adding recessed lights as accent lighting to the room. This will direct people’s attention to the parts of the room you want them to notice. Read this comprehensive guide for installing more lighting to your common spaces. You can also add dimmer switches to help bring emotion to the room while also saving energy. It’s a fairly straightforward process, but consulting this step-by-step guide will help to keep you from forgetting anything.


Do you like watching television or movies? Consider installing a projector. It’s the most budget-friendly way to get a larger-than-life viewing experience. Having a wall-mounted projector also eliminates the need to have a large television sitting in your living room when you’re not using it. Costs include the projector, a screen or painted wall, mounting hardware and cables. You can turn your living room into a movie theater for less than $1,000.


Do your living spaces feel a bit generic? Consider adding interesting wood (or even faux wood) details. Such details include wainscoting, beadboard and ceiling trim. The easiest way to DIY this project is to buy pre-designed faux wood materials, cut them to size, and paint them to fit your style. Make sure to get the positioning right. Measure twice before pulling out the hammer!

Which Room Will You Start Renovating?

With a little planning and some hard work, you can transform your home without any expert help (well, except the help of this article). Not only can you make your home more beautiful and livable, but also you can increase its value! If you have the money to spend, DIY home improvement projects are a fantastic idea.