Make Any House Look Expensive With These Easy DIY Upgrades

Updated: Mar. 20, 2023

With a little thought and hard work, you can add make your home look and feel like a luxurious residence. It's all in the details.

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Update Your Landscaping

Updating your landscaping is easier than you think. And, it can be cheaper too. Most of the time, all it involves is digging up older plants and replacing them with new ones. What’s more, if you wait until the end of the growing season, home stores and nurseries often offer significant discounts on their plants.

When doing the project, think of plants that will be in bloom or show colors throughout the season. Larger, more robust plants usually make up the back, while smaller ones flank the front. Typically group plants in threes.

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Replace Your Cabinet Hardware

Hardware can easily date a house, depending on the materials you (or the previous owner) has chosen. With minimal effort (think: 20 minutes) and more importantly, minimal expense, you can replace all of the cabinet hardware in your kitchen, immediately giving your cabinets a fresh look.

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Paint Your Old Kitchen Cabinets

This job is a tad more involved than replacing hardware, but the results are undeniable. After choosing your color and prepping your cabinets, you’ll find that the actual job of painting this essential kitchen item is quick and easy.

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Invest in Consistent Finishes and Fixtures

One absolutely essential item of luxe home decorating? Matching fixtures. Before you begin installing new light fixtures, faucets, door handles and cabinet hardware, think hard about your personal style, which material (brass, brushed nickel, stainless steel) best reflects that and which is the most timeless. Then, make each fixture consistent throughout the home.

This is a vital home decorating task that won’t be instantly recognized by visitors, but will create a more polished, put-together look for your entire home.

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Replace Bright with Beige

So you want a bright color for a cheery look to your bathroom or kitchen. Go for it! Just don’t paint the entire room that color. Brights tend to look cheap and quickly lose their appeal, especially to would-be buyers who can’t see past a coat of paint.

Instead, swap bright paints for grays, whites and beiges, and finish the room with temporary decoration in bright colors that compliment the room.

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Try Luxe Paint Treatments

Instead of sticking to interior eggshell paints, opt for a special paint treatment in a few key spots in your home. With finishes like metallic stripes, sandstone, random rectangles, textured sand and brushed suede, to name a few, you’ll create a purposeful and elegant look that will draw the eye exactly where you want it to go.

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Make a Good First Impression

After opening and shutting, welcoming visitors, and keeping out harsh weather for 20, 30, or sometimes even 100 years, your front door is likely showing some wear and tear. If you’re looking for a total do-over, replace the front door completely. If you’re looking for an instant-refresher without the price tag, sand the door and paint it a bright blue or red, something to contrast with the rest of your home.

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Opt for Comfort

What says luxury more than a warm towel in your master bath? Towel warmers come in freestanding or wall-mount versions. Just keep in mind you’ll need to either plug your towel warmer into an electrical outlet or wire it in directly. Take a look at our picks for the best towel warmers to add a spa-like feel to your bathroom.

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Add Classic Wainscoting

If you’re willing to invest a few days in transforming a room and are a fan of a more traditional look, wainscoting is the way to go. The cost varies, but installing these wood panels in a small to midsize room shouldn’t cost more than a few hundred dollars. And the results are hard to ignore: bright white, clean lines and a classic finish.

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Organize, Organize, Organize

This might seem like a no brainer, but the quickest way to make your home look expensive and well cared for is with effortless organization. Designate specific areas for your keys, the mail and kids toys. Pick up a few decorative totes or make your own organizational pieces. Above all, just get your stuff out of the way.

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classic window trim trimming
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Timeless Trimmings

Bright, fresh molding can work wonders for any room. And despite the fact that it’s brand new, no one will know the difference between classic trim that was installed 50-plus years ago, and the project you just completed last weekend.