6 Ways to Instantly Upgrade Your Home’s Appearance

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Over time, even the most well-built home can lose some of its style and charm. As new design trends come and go, so does the aesthetic appeal of many homes. But all it takes is a few cosmetic upgrades to restore some of that former glory. Try some of these simple cosmetic upgrades to instantly elevate the look of your home:

1. Install Board and Batten Walls

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Want a quick way to turn drywall into something a bit more fabulous? One easy method is installing board and batten walls. While it does require a few tools, it’s something almost any homeowner can do in a weekend.

To accomplish this project, you’ll need wood in whatever thickness you want (1×2 wood strips are fairly common for this application), nails, liquid nails, wood filler, and paintable caulk. As far as tools go, a nail gun makes this project much easier. You’ll also want an electric palm sander. For quick painting, a spray gun is a good idea.

If you’re looking for an in-depth, step-by-step guide on how to complete this look, you can find a pretty decent tutorial here. Depending on the size of the wall and the materials used, this can be a very cost-effective project. It’s great for bedrooms, bathrooms, offices, and even hallways.

2. Use GenStone to Transform Plain Finishes

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Looking for a way to update plain finishes – like cabinets, walls, or fireplace surround – with something more visually intriguing? Products like GenStone make this a breeze. GenStone is a pre-fabricated, engineered material that gives you the look of custom masonry work without the mortar, mess, or labor required to install an actual stone finish.

As GenStone explains, “It fastens to any existing flat surface including wood, brick, stucco, concrete and drywall. There’s no need to remove any existing material.” We’ve seen GenStone used as exterior siding, on porch columns, as part of a fireplace, on outdoor kitchens, and in numerous other capacities.

3. Add New Hardware to Kitchen Cabinets

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Remodeling a kitchen can cost tens of thousands of dollars. But most homeowners don’t need a total remodel. Instead, they simply need to update some old finishes with newer options that provide a sleek and modern look.

For example, you might not need new kitchen cabinets. Simply swapping out the hardware could give you a cleaner look. Stick to very simple and elegant silhouettes. Gold or black “bar style” drawer pulls are very popular right now. You can usually purchase them for just a couple of dollars each.

4. Put Luxury Vinyl Over Dated Flooring

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Most people assume that replacing flooring is an expensive and time-consuming project that’s best reserved for a licensed contractor. And in most cases, that’s right. But in certain situations, updating old flooring is a simple weekend DIY project.

If you’re dealing with old porcelain tile or linoleum flooring that’s past its prime, there’s a quick and easy way to upgrade without having to hire a contractor or spend thousands of dollars. The solution is luxury vinyl flooring.

Luxury vinyl flooring, which is basically an engineered flooring material made to look like wood, can be installed directly on top of existing flooring (assuming it’s flat) and snapped or locked into place using the grooves of the boards. Simply measure your floor, buy the right amount of materials, and get to work. Most vinyl boards can be scored and cut using a utility knife.

5. Show Your Deck Some Love

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If you have a deck in your backyard, a few simple tweaks could take it from drab to fab in a weekend or less. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Sand down the existing wood boards and apply a fresh coat of stain to bring them back to life.
  • Replace the existing wood railing with a cable railing for a modern look.
  • Install a few planter boxes and add string lighting.

There you have it! With very little work and just a small expense, you can have an outdoor living area that’s fit for a magazine!

6. Give Your House a Breath of Fresh Air

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You don’t need to spend $25,000 on a home remodel. And you certainly don’t need to buy a new house. With just a few hundred bucks and a free weekend, you can transform the appearance of your house and make it look fresh and modern. What ideas would you add to this list?