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Ask Brian: Quick DIY Projects to Give an Old House a New Look

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Ask Brian: Fast DIY Tasks to Give an Previous Home a New Look

Ask Brian is a weekly column by Actual Property Knowledgeable Brian Kline. When you have questions on actual property investing, DIY, dwelling shopping for/promoting, or different housing inquiries please e-mail your inquiries to

Query from Jenny in PA: Howdy Brian, My husband and I are proud new first time householders. We’ve been in our dwelling since April and at the moment are comfy that our funds will permit for just a few cheap enchancment tasks. Our home is an older 1983 split-level in want of some modernization. I’ve no expertise doing dwelling enchancment tasks however my husband has some restricted expertise. He helped his father do a shower transform when he was a teen and he’s helped a buddy with just a few dwelling repairs over the previous few years. Each of us need to grow to be more proficient with dwelling repairs and enhancements. Our ideas are to start out with just a few smaller tasks and construct as much as greater tasks as we acquire extra expertise. The place’s a superb place to begin to convey our dwelling into this century?

Reply: Howdy Jenny. I like the way in which you assume on a few ranges. Study-as-you-go is a good method. Additionally, updating your older home will make it really feel like you’ve gotten extra of a customized dwelling in addition to add worth through the years. There are tons of DIY tasks to get you began. Novices can full many of those in a single weekend to construct confidence for venturing into greater tasks in just a few quick months. And talking of this century, you possibly can simply seek for on-line detailed directions protecting nearly any mission. Together with high-quality movies exhibiting step-by-step directions. So let’s check out just a few to get you guys began.

Substitute kitchen and toilet {hardware}. Upon getting all the {hardware} off the cupboards and drawers, you may need to contemplate portray them a up to date shade. However as for the {hardware}, this may make a putting distinction in each rooms whereas being one of many best tasks that requires the fewest instruments. You possibly can select to both fastidiously match the brand new {hardware} measurement to the present screw holes or plug and drill new holes. For those who plug and drill new holes, plan to repaint the whole cupboards and drawers. If you wish to match the present holes, measure the gap between holes and produce an outdated knob to the ironmongery shop for comparability.

Substitute the showerhead if you are making small adjustments within the toilet. Changing a Eighties showerhead makes a giant distinction. You’ll in all probability enhance the water strain with a brand new head and likewise replace to a spa-like look and bathe expertise. Relying on the mannequin you choose, you may not want way more than an adjustable wrench and a few plumber’s tape to wrap across the threads of the pipe protruding from the wall.

Add pullouts, cabinets, and different organizing instruments inside your kitchen cupboards. Including pullout drawers requires some extra superior abilities and instruments. However inserting wire cabinets or a Lazy Susan for spices takes no talent and considerably will increase your storage capability.

Replace the entrance of your home. You possibly can transfer up the talent degree by changing your entrance door with one thing extra modern or you would simply give it a brand new coat of paint. Paint is your good friend when first beginning with small DIY tasks. It’s vital to make use of the proper paint. Good brushes additionally make a giant distinction however good brushes are costly, so that you need to select correctly. You additionally need to get within the behavior of taking good care of good paintbrushes. If you are on the entrance door, paint all of the trim and the storage door as nicely. Add recent home numbers and a brand new mailbox.

Convert a coat closet right into a small mudroom. Jenny, a split-level home doesn’t often have a coat closet on the entrance door so this in all probability received’t be just right for you but it surely may work for lots of different individuals. Changing it right into a mudroom or one thing extra helpful might be so simple as eradicating the closet doorways and including hooks and cabinets for backpacks, sports activities tools, and different objects to higher meet your loved ones’s wants.

Let’s transfer slightly additional up the DIY expertise degree…

Swap out for up to date lighting fixtures. Altering an outdated mild fixture for a extra trendy one of many similar measurement is surprisingly simple; this may embrace the eating space chandelier. The massive factor right here is being assured that you just flip off the electrical energy on the breaker field. Most lights connect to straightforward measurement electrical packing containers on the ceiling. Normally, the one instruments wanted are screwdrivers and pliers. Change the wire cap connectors on the similar time. Nevertheless, should you deviate from normal electrical fittings, you may need to usher in an expert or at the very least ask for assist from a good friend with the proper expertise. Whilst you’re at it, change your entire outlet and swap covers with new clear customized ones.

Tackle changing plumbing fixtures. Beware right here, plumbing is commonly harder than it seems to be. You’re in all probability not able to intestine and transform a whole toilet however beginning with new taps can expressively modernize your kitchen and bathtub.

Let’s hear your easy DIY concepts for updating. Please add feedback.

Our weekly Ask Brian column welcomes questions from readers of all expertise ranges with residential actual property. Please e-mail your questions or inquiries to

Writer bio: Brian Kline has been investing in actual property for greater than 35 years and writing about actual property investing for 12 years. He additionally attracts upon 30 plus years of enterprise expertise together with 12 years as a supervisor at Boeing Plane Firm. Brian presently lives at Lake Cushman, Washington. A trip vacation spot, close to a nationwide and the Pacific Ocean.

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