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7 Home Renovations Even Frugal People Will Make

Kerkez /
Kerkez /

Owning a home is a dream for many, but being a homeowner also means undertaking some home renovations. Not only do renovations often require a lot of time and patience, but they are often expensive and may seem out of reach if you’re on a budget.

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According to Rocket Mortgage, Americans spend an average of $22,000 on a single home renovation project, so it’s no wonder many choose to skip or delay them. Still, some renovations are necessary and may even increase a home’s value. This means there are some updates that are worth it for frugal individuals — those who choose to live modestly, save money and make conscious financial decisions.


“My approach finds renovations that can be made cost-effectively and not only greatly increase the value of a property but also make a home more marketable,” said Daniel Cabrera, owner of Sell My House Fast SA TX.

Here are some home renovations that even frugal people will make.

Kitchen Updates

According to Cabrera, small remodels in the kitchen, such as hardware updates, new paint for cabinets and new countertops, are cost-effective and can significantly boost a home’s market appeal.

In terms of costs, he said hardware usually costs $2 to $5 per piece. Meanwhile, paint for cabinets, rollers and tape cost about $50 to $100, depending on the paint you buy, he added.

“Countertops are more expensive but have a great return on investment, usually costing between $1,000 and $2,000 when using granite or quartz,” said Cabrera.

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Energy Efficiency Upgrades

Another renovation that even frugal people make is energy-efficient upgrades, which can end up saving you money in the long term.

“Energy-efficient windows and insulation reduce utility costs, all while appealing to the buyer’s sustainability, which affects their pocketbook,” said Cabrera. “Making the upgrades can be a wise choice for increasing the marketability of a house.”

He said that windows can cost around $170 per window for standard sizes, while insulation in the attic usually costs about $1,000 to $1,500 and can have a significant impact on electricity costs.

Landscaping Improvements

Simple but effective landscaping improvements, such as mulching, creating perennial gardens and maintaining the yard, provide the best bang for the buck in improving curb appeal all at once, according to Cabrera.

A bag of mulch usually costs about $5, and most entryways don’t need more than five bags, he said. “Flowers are also affordable and can add a lot of curb appeal when combined with mulch. Many flowers cost from $5 to $25,” he added.

Modern Lighting Fixtures

Replacing outdated light fixtures with more modern ones can also do wonders for a space, giving it a more up-to-date and sophisticated look without the related costs, said Cabrera.

“Modern light fixtures might be the most underrated of all, with many light fixtures ranging from $6 for flush mounts to $75 for more ornate fixtures,” he said. “Amazon is a great place for light fixtures. We buy many of these on Amazon.”

Security Lighting

Deborah Lamberton, general manager of ASAP Restoration, LLC, said security isn’t just for the well-off; it’s for everyone, and it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg, either.

“A simple motion activated outdoor spotlight can make a world of difference when it comes to protecting your property from devious sorts, or just the local neighborhood wildlife, too,” she said. “Now you won’t have racoon footprints on your car in the morning when you go to work anymore.”

According to her, you can find these for around $90 on Amazon.


Even if a home is brand new, you can still make it look better with paint.

“By and large, most homes have a uniform look to every wall in every room,” said Brandon Walker, superintendent of ASAP Restoration, LLC.

“It doesn’t have to be that way,” said Walker. “A can of paint and a little bit of time over the weekend can make one wall stand out from all the rest and show off your style in a way that will make all the other walls jealous.” And paint costs around $16 on Amazon, he added.

Garage Door

While garage doors are more expensive than some renovations, a new garage door is essential if yours is about to fall apart — and, according to experts, it can also add a lot of curb appeal.

“Garage doors can take up nearly 40% of a home’s exterior. That’s a lot of real estate, so the style and condition will make a big first impression on visitors and future buyers,” said Justin Evans, vice president of marketing at garage door company Clopay Corporation.

According to Ornella Bianco, home improvement specialist at, repairing a garage door, depending on the issue, typically costs between $150 and $350.

“More extensive projects, like fixing misaligned sensors or replacing broken panels, can cost up to $1,000,” she said. “In terms of ROI, 102.7% of these costs could be recouped from this project upon resale. Hiring a pro for garage door repairs ensures safety and minimizes risks of theft or vandalism.”

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This article originally appeared on 7 Home Renovations Even Frugal People Will Make