Home Decorating Projects Under $20 ~ These improvements may not cost a lot, but they'll make a big difference in how your home functions.

Update with Paint
Breathe new life into an old piece of furniture with a fresh coat of paint. For wood pieces, remove dirt or wax buildup with a household cleaner and rinse. Sand rough areas and wipe away dust. Apply two coats of stain-blocking primer and allow it to dry between coats. Roll or brush on two coats of latex paint in the direction of the wood grain, and use a brush to finish the surface with smooth strokes.

Replace Switchplates
Replace a plastic switchplate with a wood, metal, or ceramic cover to make a visual statement. Some switchplates are even textured to blend in with marble, tile, or stone surfaces. Do this for light switches, electrical outlets, and phone and cable jacks.

Step Up Storage
Plastic bins are a versatile and inexpensive way to restore order in almost every in-home trouble spot. Using clear bins for storage in a garage or for a closet gift-wrap station, for example, is an easy way to take inventory and identify items at a glance. Use labels to ensure everything stays tidy and easy to access.

Replace a Window Treatment
Has the window shade above your kitchen sink been marred by repeated exposure to splashes and cooking liquids? Replace a stained window covering with an inexpensive fabric treatment and see your kitchen in a whole new light.

Update Door Hardware
All it takes is a screwdriver and few minutes to give your front door a facelift. Change clashing or poorly operating door hardware, make house numbers more readable, or add a doorknocker.

Revive Outdoor Furniture
Capture the feeling of a sunny summer day with colorful outdoor furniture. In less than a weekend, you can give outdoor furniture a color makeover with paint. Find a set of inexpensive deck chairs, or recoat faded, chipped, and drab-looking outdoor furniture. Many deck and siding paints come in a variety of colors and finishes. Choose a paint that can endure weather and temperature extremes, as well as UV rays.

Create Eye-Catching Curb Appeal
Amp up your exterior color palette with a punchy door color that complements your home’s character. Painting an exterior door is an inexpensive, instant update that can be changed with ease. A cheerful, glossy red door extends a warm welcome to visitors and ensures the yard has year-round color.

Bench Drop Zone
A small bench inside a garage or entryway provides a convenient catchall for grocery bags and drop zone accessories. Add hooks above the bench to hang hats, coats, and seasonal gear within easy reach.


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