8 Household Items You Can Easily Upgrade

Someone spray painting a wood chair in the color hot pink.

Home ownership has distinct advantages. For example, there’s that tax break that helps out each year. Plus, when you own your home you get to decide what upgrades to make and what look you want to achieve. However, home improvement can be prohibitively expensive. Instead of replacing appliances and running out to purchase all new furniture, consider making some upgrades that will save you tons of dough and allow you to personalize the look of your home. Here are some household items that you can easily upgrade rather than buying new.

1. Furniture

There are many ways that you can upgrade furniture. Stripping and repainting or staining are obvious solutions. From the kitchen table to the bed frame, if it's wood, you can give it a new look. You can also add flair to furniture with a little creativity. For a side table, decorate the top with bottle caps, buttons, or shells and cover with a piece of glass. Or change the look with a layer of colored pallet board pieces. These changes can be made to any furniture in the house as well as those on the patio.

In addition to stripping the surface of furniture, a change in fabric can create a whole new look with very little expense. Recover the seat of your bar stools or favorite chair. Give an old rocker new life with a foam seat cushion covered in fabric. Reupholster the couch. Just remember to use all-weather material when making cushions for outdoor furniture.

2. Sinks and Bathtubs

A modern bathroom sink with rolled towels next to it.

Whether your house is blessed with a retro pink bathtub or the white ceramic sink is no longer white, you can bring sinks and bathtubs back to life without replacing them. Achieve the look you want with a store-bought epoxy kit and flip that once-popular mint green bathroom into a fresh white. For stainless steel, renew the shine with a thorough cleaning of vinegar followed by hydrogen peroxide.

3. Light Fixtures

Tired of the brass light fixture in your dining room? Changing the color scheme in your bedroom? Want to lighten up the bathroom? Grab a rattle can and paint your light fixtures. Simply remove the fixture and tape off any portions that need protection from overspray. Apply two to three light coats of spray paint in the color of your choice and enjoy the look of an entirely new fixture at a fraction of the cost.

4. Molding

Someone painting molding around a door frame.

Finishing touches make a huge impact on a home, and few are easier to change than the baseboard molding or other trim around your house. Instead of replacing it all, add some paint or stain instead.

5. Cabinets

New cabinets are a huge expense. Instead of replacing them, refinish them. You can buy kits at your local home improvement store that will help you change the look with ease. In addition, add handles to your cabinets for an instant update to the room.

6. Brick Fireplace

A white brick fireplace with a Christmas garland on the mantle.

Removing or replacing a dated fireplace will set your budget back. Change the look with white paint for a modern appeal.

7. Appliances

Once again, paint comes to the rescue. If you’re lucky enough to have an appliance that still works although the color has gone out of vogue, grab some appliance paint and freshen it up.

8. Flooring

Even flooring can earn an easy upgrade with a coat of paint. Change the color of that dated tile with a paintbrush and update the concrete floor with a roller full of color.