Thrifty ways to turn your first house into a home

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Thrifty ways to turn your first house into a home

First Home News would like to thank Becky Goddard-Hill for writing this blog post exclusively for us.

Becky is the writer of the Family Budgeting blog.  She set up this site to share her ideas for living creatively as a family on a budget. 


When you move into your first home there will be a temptation to spend lots of money making it just ‘perfect.’ I would advise living in your home for a while to really get a feel for what it needs and saving up for the things you want. In the meantime, there are many thrifty things you can do to turn your first house into a home.

I would advise wherever possible, don’t take anything you don’t like into your new home. De-clutter your stuff as you unpack. You don’t want your new house filled of anything broken, old or ugly. Sometimes it is better to go without rather than live with something you hate. I once ate off the same two plates for months because the ugly set I’d been given made me sad!

Just because someone has given you something does not mean it has to live in your new home. Say no thank you, or put it straight in the charity bag – this is your home and you want it to be the place you fall in love with!

There is a temptation in a new home to want everything new; but don’t max your credit card out or buy everything on HP, take your time. Saving for a kettle won’t take too long and boiling water in a saucepan is no hardship. It is often things you plan and save for that you enjoy the most, as they have been hard won!

Creativity costs very little. Throws hide ugly sofas, photos make bespoke art work, wildflowers in jam jars look so natural and colourful rugs can brighten dull carpets. Your home needs an injection of YOU more than an injection of money to get it looking like a home.

Clean everything really well.  Even if you have to live with fabrics you aren’t in love with, the fact that they are as clean and stain free as possible will make them more bearable. Borrow a steam cleaner if you don’t have one and scrub hard…including paintwork.

Fragrance your home gently, plug-in’s are great, as is pot pourri. Do air it well, even in winter. This costs nothing but can make a place feel fresh and new.

Take your time and really plan how you want your rooms to look. Everything can look ‘better’ if you place it well and give thought to it. It didn’t always use to be the case that you need new stuff, sometimes it just needs arranging better. If you have a friend with a keen eye for design have them over for coffee, cake and a free consultation.

Really consider what will make the difference to an ‘okay’ room…would a new curtain perk it up, a picture, a vase of flowers? Sometimes just a little inexpensive item can make a huge difference.

I would advise you display loved treasures and hide the washing powder. A home should make your heart sing…who wants to see washing powder? My old dad would always say fresh flowers and a bowl of fruit make a home looked loved.

And lastly, keep your home tidy. Messy houses hide away your lovely things and make homes look unloved and uncared for. Have a no-shoe rule and a sturdy mat by the front door.

Be proud of your home; fill it with friends, laughter, love, and memories. These are all priceless but really will make your first house into a home.


About the author

Becky Goddard-Hill

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