How Do You Renovate A Small House?

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When we first set eyes on our current home, it was most definitely not love at first sight! But it was in a prime location, the price was right, and it came with 4 beautiful treed and fenced acres of land. It even had its pond! When we drove down the driveway, something about it just felt like home, even though we could see immediately that it needed a lot of work.

Whether you always planned on remodelling or expanding on your home from the date of purchase or you’ve found yourself and your family quickly outgrowing the space, there are options outside of simply buying something more significant. Between strategic remodels and sometimes necessary additions, if you love your neighbourhood and dread the thought of moving, there are several ways to make the space you have work for your lifestyle.

Repurposing Existing Rooms

When your home’s layout doesn’t work for you, look to repurpose rooms so that it does. If you’ve never used your dining room for eating or entertaining, turn it into an office, play area, game room or even an additional bedroom. Transform a too-small spare bedroom into closet space, a small game room for kids or workout space. Reconfigure an extra closet to a laundry room with pocket or folding doors and stacking units, and then repurpose the old, larger laundry space into something you need, like a pantry, mudroom or additional bathroom. Check out our range of Melbourne home builders for your dream house.

Doubling Up Rooms

If your home is technically the right size for your needs, yet the rooms are too small, make them bigger. For example, if you never use your dining room, and the adjacent living room is ineptly sized, knock down the joining wall (if structurally feasible) to create one large room. Join a too-small kitchen with the adjacent dining room, sunroom or other unused space to create an eat-in kitchen. Frequently, even if you still use each area for its intended purpose, such as opening up the dining room to the living room yet still keeping that section to eat in, the lack of a wall can significantly impact the feel of the space.

Maximizing Usable Space

Every home has dead space that isn’t fully utilized. Find these areas, and remodel them to achieve the most function out of your square footage. Turn the space underneath the stairs into a closet, built-in bookcase or even a small nook for your pet or kids to hang out and relax in. Finish your basement or attic, if you have one, to drastically increase your useable square footage, and turn large landings or open spaces in a hallway between rooms into a sitting area, play space or office. Add shelving to rooms to fully utilize vertical space while keeping the floor area clear. Where it’s feasible, opt for built-ins, including Murphy beds, to truly make the best of your existing square footage.

Addition Basics: Up or Out?

When a home needs square footage, an addition is the best choice, and there are pros and cons to expanding outwards or upwards. The cheapest option is to expand outward, especially with an already two-story home; however, you’ll lose yard space. To maintain your outdoor living space while increasing your interior square footage, opt for a different story. This is often more expensive and time-consuming than a ground floor addition due to the structural changes necessary to support another floor; however, you can double your square footage without losing your yard. Discuss this project with an architectural engineer to determine what type of addition is best for your space. At MJS Construction Group, we have the best home builders selection to make your house a dream come true.

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Tips for Getting Ready to Renovate on a Budget

Don’t Budge From Your Budget.

Set a firm budget for your remodel, and do not stray from it. Make sure to build in a 15-20% cushion for any unforeseen costs that may arise.

Shop Around for Supplies

Take the time to shop around for the supplies and materials you will need ahead of time to get the best deals. You can reap significant savings with recycled or lightly used fixtures and building materials.

DIY What You Can

Not hiring a contractor can help keep your home remodel on a budget, but make sure you have the skills and tools needed to complete your whole to-do list. If you do have to hire a contractor for some of the work, make sure you understand what’s included in the contractor’s fees and what is your responsibility to provide.

Handle Your Debris Disposal

Renting a dumpster to have on-site at your home is a great way to save on your remodel and easily clean up as you go. A 20-yard container is usually a good fit for a home renovation or cleans out project.

Set Up a Temporary Space

Be sure always to have a functioning backup space inside your home available while certain areas are being worked on, such as your kitchen or bathroom. If your bathroom will be under construction and not useable, you can have a temporary bathroom set up in your basement if you don’t have a second one available in your home.

Tips to Renovate your House Beautifully yet Economically

Divide and Conquer

As mentioned earlier, effective planning is the key to effective renovation. If you are renovating yourself, you need to focus on both the bigger picture and the smaller parts. You might have heard the phrase “whole is greater than the sum of its parts”, you can apply the same strategy to your home renovation project and devise a renovation plan for each area in your house. If you hire an architect for renovation, he will assess your requirements and then renovate accordingly. In this case, since you’re in charge, you will brainstorm your requirements, write your end goal for each space in the house, decide the overall goal, and then move on to.


Since you want to renovate your house economically, you need to decide the total expenditure requirements/limit. It is important to remember in budgeting that you cannot overestimate your budget, keep your budget underestimated and then move on to researching for things you need.


You will be surprised at the number of options you have once you start your research. The beautiful lamp that you liked at a high-end store can be purchased at a lower price from elsewhere as well. When renovating your house on a budget, please remember that if you research to find the furniture you like, the paint you want or the decorations you would like in your house, you will likely find most of the supplies at a low price. Take advantage of online shopping, thrift stores and second-hand furniture shops and see how far you will go. 

Doors Create the First Impression

The first impression of your house is your door. If you cannot change the door completely and if your existing door is in good condition, you should repaint your door. Your doors could also affect the lighting of your room, and you could benefit from this excellent technique interior designed Amy Lau uses, “When dealing with a dark room, whatever colour is used on the walls, I paint the ceiling, trim, and doors the same colour but 50 per cent lighter. Too much of one shade can overpower a space.” So, when renovating on a budget, if you are repainting your door, try to use different shades according to the concentration of light in your house to optimize your house’s lighting the way you want to.

Paint Affects Lighting

As mentioned earlier, painting effects lighting, and when renovating your house, you might opt for new paint. In that case, if you are already on a budget, purchasing different coloured pallets might seem counterintuitive. If you are on a tight budget, then opt for a black and white palette, it will give your house a modern, sophisticated look, and you will have the guarantee that you can never go wrong with white or black.

Small Rooms don’t have to Look Small.

If you are renovating to make a small house look more significant than an inexpensive and beautiful way of achieving that goal, use mirrors. It’s an affordable technique, but it’s used by one of the most famous architects of his time, Sir John Soane, who used mirrors in his London house’s breakfast room.

Kitchens and Storage

If you are decorating/renovating your house, you are probably trying to de-clutter and maximize your storage. Utilizing your kitchen to its maximum capacity can help you minimize your storage problems. To do this on a low budget, you can either DIY kitchen cabinets or storages from recycled material at your house or take advantage of thrift shops in your area.

No one knows your kitchen space better than you do, and your storage needs building DIY storage kitchen cabinets will not only help you save money and reuse old materials at your house, but it will also ensure that you’re making exactly what you need. If you already have enough storage cabinets, you don’t need to replace them. You can repaint them to make your kitchen look as good as new.

Light Comes through the Windows

According to Marc Appleton, “half the experience of living indoors sees the outdoors” So when remodelling your house install large windows. However, you might not have the budget to change your windows. In that case, play around with paint and paint your windows a shade lighter than the rest of the room to maximize the light coming through the windows.

Bathroom Renovation

You would be surprised at the number of inexpensive yet quality products you can purchase to renovate your bathroom. If you are looking to install a new toilet fixture, you can check our Toto Toilet. If you are not planning to install any new items, you can fix up your existing toilet by changing the paint, changing cabinet paints, fixing the shower’s pressure, etc.

Floor Renovation

If you are on a budget, then floor renovation might seem expensive. If you cannot find a flooring installation under your budget, then you should invest in renovating everything else according to your floor design.

The key to renovating or redecorating your house beautifully yet inexpensively is to devise a goal for yourself, and paint an entire picture of what you want and then step by step renovate each part of your house like mentioned above.

Remodelling Design Ideas for Small Spaces

Take advantage of available height.

Even small rooms can often have tall ceilings. This is often the case in historic homes, particularly in Cincinnati’s downtown areas. Use the available height by extending cabinetry, fireplaces, trim work and doorways upward. When we feel a sense of grandeur overhead, we are less likely to notice closer walls at eye level. This also provides more space for storage and decoration, which can reduce clutter closer to the floor. Looking for dual occupancy? Look no further! MJS Construction Group has you covered. 

Utilize built-ins where furniture would be too bulky.

Functional storage space is essential in a small home. Shelving recessed into a wall can provide much-needed space when every inch counts. Recessed cabinetry also conserves floor space. Cabinets help to contain contents and keep the home’s appearance uncluttered. Built-ins can take advantage of spaces where a piece of furniture wouldn’t fit and can be custom-tailored with the space’s storage needs.

Keep the floor open and visible.

While not everything can be elevated off the floor, wherever possible, look for options that allow more of the floor to be seen. A great example of this is using a pedestal sink in a small bathroom or an island with open shelving underneath in a small kitchen. Same as with many other techniques on our list allows the eye to see more free space, which makes the room feel larger.

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Repurpose unused or underused space.

If your home has small rooms that you’re not using for a specific purpose, consider repurposing them or joining them up with adjacent rooms. This can be a useful tactic for creating a master suite with a walk-in closet if one does not currently exist in your home. Another option is to review your home’s construction to see if space can be expanded into to create new square footage. Two places to look for this kind of space are garages and attics, but in some cases, rearranging a hallway can have a significant impact on usable space.

Keep fixtures on the correct scale for space.

When you’re searching for items such as light fixtures or furniture, be cautious about keeping them on the correct scale for space. A large hanging light can easily crowd a small room and look like overkill for space’s needs and limits. A professional designer can assist you in finding the right fixtures. 

Prioritize organization in your remodelling projects.

A small space that is orderly and organized will feel instantly larger than the one without. When planning your space, look at how you can keep clutter off counters and prevent a free-for-all for available space. Also, consider how your storage solutions can double as points of interest or offer a way to highlight collections in a way to keep them visually streamlined. Glass-fronted cabinets for china in the kitchen or cabinetry around a fireplace allow you to have a place for everything and everything in its place.

Add natural light wherever you have the option.

Large windows that bring in natural daylight and offer views to the outside will instantly help a small space feel larger by blurring the line between inside and outside. It’s a simple tactic that can be applied in nearly every room, either with windows or skylights. 

You are renovating because you want your house to look more beautiful and feel more comfortable. Consider your home renovation plan as a business plan or as your special project you are starting from scratch.

The key to renovating your house on a budget yet beautifully is to plan the entire process effectively. The following sections will demonstrate how you can divide your entire renovation plans into sub-plans according to your home’s space and renovate your home effectively.

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