Hello dear readers and welcome back for another post in my Home Ownership 101 Series. People often ask how I have achieved such a beautifully furnished home with “expensive antiques” and a high end look on a “teacher budget.” The fact is, I never let being on a limited budget dictate how I wanted my house to look. Instead I have always found budget friendly ways to achieve the decor look I wanted for less. Over the years I have made frugal purchases by shopping yard sales, thrift shops and consigment stores as well as many DIY makeovers on furniture and decor. If you are moving into a new home and you are on a strict budget, you can still have beautiful decor and furnishings with a little bit of creativity, planning and frugality.
Many of the items in our home are second hand, DIY projects, or clearance sale decor. I love a good bargain!
Moving into a dream home is usually one of the most exciting milestones in life. It is even more exciting when one begins to personalize the interiors of the home with furnishings and decor. More often than not, money usually ends up becoming an issue. This means that you have no other option but to work on a budget, to ensure that your dream home is furnished. If you find yourself in this situation, then here is a checklist to consider so that you can realize the dream of having a cozy home that is decorated and furnished in a style you love.
Start with visualizing each nook and cranny
Regardless of whether you are moving into a condo or a studio apartment, you need to take enough time to visualize every nook and cranny of the entire living space. You should visit the place during the day and come up with very extensive lists of the items that will be placed in every room.
You can begin with large pieces such as the beds, couches, and nightstands, then progress to items such as, artwork, doormats, and other fixtures that suit your preferences. Determine all the items that will go to the foyer and the corridors, to get a clear picture. With a clear picture of the items that will go into every section of the whole house, you can begin to determine what will be included in your budget.
Prioritize between needs and wants
Next, you have to come to a phase where you draw a clear line between your needs and your wants. This is the only possible way to work with the limited resources as you seek to come up with a comfortable new living space. The entire plan will become dependent on the way you define your priorities. Therefore, make it a point to decide what you need and what you want.
Reevaluating your long-term goals and then defining what you would require to purchase to survive will be essential in the determination of your main needs. For example, take a sheet of paper and divide it into two columns, then write down your various needs and wants in each column. If you still can’t afford everything you would like to achieve a “high end” look, then you can purchase a few outstanding items for your house that will make you happy and “wow” your visitors such as a beautiful piece of upholstered furniture that is made of velvet fabric.
Make a budget strategy – consider all monthly expenses
The budget that you eventually come up with will be like a vision board, only that its realization is entirely predicated on the amount of money you have in your bank. This step is quite crucial in the determination of how you get to spend your initial days in the new home. You can, for instance, spend all your money on furniture and have a financial crisis for the rest of the month or year.
Most people usually spend an estimated $7000 on the very first furnishing spree, but it is possible to spend a fraction of this amount as you move into your new home. This is where popular money saving techniques such as the (X3 saving technique) comes in. With this technique, you can start by figuring out the general monthly expenses (including groceries and bills), so that you can obtain a specific figure, say $5000. If you multiply this figure by three, that will be $15000. Any amount that you have in your bank that is above the $15000 can be used to purchase the furniture. Such is an approach that is meant to ensure that you do not end up draining your savings account while trying to furnish your house. Upon saving enough money to last you for 6 months, you can proceed to purchase new furniture.
Filling up your room with essentials
Having come up with a clear cut budget, and listed out your priorities clearly, it is now time to bring everything together. The process will begin with you filling out your room with the most necessary items, and then you can progress to the secondary ones.
It’s shopping time, Yay!
With everything you need clearly outlined, and the essentials already determined, it is now time to shop for the furniture and décor. You should take your time to compare what various stores are offering so that you do not end up overspending on items that are on sale elsewhere. If recreating the decor board that you put together using images of costly decor is proving to be an unrealistic goal, then it is time to think about budget friendly décor. There are tons of ideas on Pinterest and DIY blogs to help you customize the items that you want to have in your dream home.
It is recommended that you have a look at what second-hand furniture shops are offering or even the items listed in garage sales. If you have some time to spare looking through the items on sale in such places, then you can end up taking home pieces of furniture at surprisingly lower prices than what you had budgeted for. This cash you save can be saved up for your next furniture shopping spree.
I hope this post will help you as you move toward making your dream home a reality. Of course these same principles can also be applied to home improvment or decor renovations as well. Best of luck as you embark on this awesome adventure!
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