Affordable Ways to Transform a Dated Home

The salmon-colored kitchen cabinets. The carpeted bathroom floors. Have you ever walked into a home that was built in the 90s’ and thought to yourself, “what were they thinking back then?” With many dated homes hitting the market, buyers and sellers must consider taking on renovations in order to bring their living area into the 21st century. Here are some renovation tips for updating a dated home that won’t break the bank.

Dated bathroom in need of a remodel.

Update the Cabinetry

It’s amazing how much of a difference simply changing the pulls and knobs of your kitchen and bathroom cabinets can make. There are a number of different finishes available, such as bronze, brushed nickel, aged copper, and shiny stainless steel. For the cabinets themselves, a new coat of paint that compliments the room will work wonders.

Refinish the Staircase

The staircase is a major feature of any house, and its potential for design is often the most overlooked. One of the most cost-effective ways to update a dated staircase is to paint it. Paint the risers (the vertical portion of the stair) the same color as the trim. Then, paint the treads (the horizontal portion of the stair) a contrasting color to give your stairway an aesthetic pop. If you have a little more in your remodel budget, consider replacing the outdated banister with a more contemporary one.

Create an Open Floor Plan

Most homebuyers these days prefer homes with open floor plans – where the kitchen, family room, and dining room share one big open space. There are a number of simple ways to accomplish this without having to rent a wrecking ball for the day. Getting rid of bulky furniture pieces can open up rooms and make them feel airier. Mirrors also trick the eye into seeing more space; when placed opposite to windows, mirrors reflect light into the room making it feel more open.


The Victorian wallpaper, the flesh-colored sink – it’s got to go! Replacing an outdated vanity can transform any bathroom into an entirely different space. Updating a vanity involves coordinating vanity tops and matching mirrors. Go with a granite or laminate top and replace tacky mirrors with more aesthetic pieces. Paint the walls a more soothing color and add fresh linens, to give the bathroom a spa feeling.


Poorly lit rooms have the tendency to feel small, dark and cramped. Adding many different bright, contrasting lights can open a space up and breath in fresh life. Place a couple of tall floor lamps in dark corners, along with lamps on side tables. And replace dated ceiling lights with more modern fixtures, which will create a more updated tone for the entire room.

Whether you’re trying to sell your dated home or have just moved into one, you don’t have to spend a fortune knocking down walls and tearing down cabinets. For the most part, it just takes paint and a little rearranging to get a home feeling younger.

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