But with the right planning, you can transform the feel of a whole room with a single project that only costs you a few hundred bucks.Pick from our round-up of value-boosting upgrades that all come in under the 0 mark—some You can give your drab, washed-out walls a burst of brilliant depth (or wash away your decorating sins with virgin white) just by picking up a paint can and having at them.Luckily, there's a simple way to beat miter-saw frustration.Trimroc molding from Canamould Extrusions is a lightweight polystyrene foam coated in hard plaster.Many hanging lanterns from the first half of the 20th century were humble by design, looking as if they'd been crafted by blacksmiths rather than machines.
Crown molding makes it to the top of most remodeling lists because it adds charm and value to a home, not because people enjoy spending a Saturday trying to get the corners just right.Time to switch it out for a new Energy Star-qualified dishwasher, which can save you more than a year on power and almost 500 gallons of water.If you don't have a dishwasher at all, you're using 40 percent more water washing by hand! You can install a dishwasher yourself in an afternoon.If you've scored one such find at a yard sale or have one stashed in the attic, you can invite guests to "come on in" by putting back into service a vintage lantern.
It's an easy, affordable job once you get the parts. See How to Rewire a Vintage Entry Lantern for full step-by-step instructions.
No plumber, no electrician—and no worries that you're squandering your retirement money on a load of clean dishes.