There are simple at home DIY projects you can do to save you heaps of money. Here are 10 ideas – how many of these have you done, or would consider doing?
There are simple DIY home projects you can do that can surprisingly save you a heap of cash. Even if you hire a tradesman to do some of these jobs for you, the long-term savings will be worth it. Certain tasks will need a qualified tradesperson anyway, but some of these you could start doing right now, after a trip to the hardware store, and end up seeing a big difference in your bills, and your cost of living.
Here are 10 At home DIY projects to save you money
Want some quick inspo? Here are 10 DIY projects you can do at home to save money
Growing your own food
You do not need a large amount of space to be able to grow your own food. When I lived in Sydney in a one-bedroom apartment with a small balcony, I was able to grow a wide variety of fruits, veggies, herbs and greens and save myself heaps of money by not buying these foods at the supermarket. I think at one point, I had more than 50 large pots on my small balcony and I was growing different varieties of spinach and lettuce, basil, chives, shallots and rosemary, lemons, blueberries, mangoes and strawberries, as well as radishes, cucumbers, chilies, capsicum, beetroot and tomatoes.
You can check out my article on How to Grow Rich with a Garden HERE.
You don’t need a lot of equipment to get started, and you can even grow some herbs inside as well, in window boxes.
If you take a quick trip to Bunnings or other hardware store, you can pick up some large pots, potting mix, a few gardening tools, some seeds and/or seedlings, a bottle of Seasol and you’re pretty much good to get started! Be prepared to make a few mistakes and learn along the way, but gardening can be very rewarding and those savings really add up!
You can check out this article HERE by ABCNews which discusses how much you can save by growing your own food.
Stop drafts in the home
Stop drafts in your home to save you money on your energy bills. Draft-proofing windows and doors is one of the most cost-effective ways to save money on your energy costs. The most effective way to draft proof is to use a weatherstripping product, however, you can also use rope caulk and plastic film as an alternative. These materials are readily available at any home improvement store, and installation is as simple as cutting to size and attaching with a few nails or with sealant.
Once all the drafts are sealed, your energy bills should be significantly lower. Don’t forget to check under the front door, the laundry room door, check floor space next to walls and around all windows.
“Air leaking into your home can increase your heating and cooling costs by 25 per cent”energyaustralia.com.au/blog/better-energy/how-draught-proof-your-home
Energy Australia has some tips on how to draft proof your home HERE.
Install low-flow shower heads
Installing low-flow shower heads can save you a lot of money! This simple DIY project doesn’t require any special tools and can be done in less than 30 minutes. Low-flow shower heads are designed to reduce the amount of water used per minute — up to 50% — without sacrificing pressure or performance. With a lower volume of water, you’ll save money on your utility bills each month. In addition, you’ll also be doing your part to conserve water and help the environment.
To get started on this easy project:
1) Start by turning off the water supply for your shower.
2) Unscrew any existing aerators or shower heads from the pipe using pliers.
3) Measure the diameter of the pipe so that you know what size low-flow shower head to purchase.
4) Tightly screw on the new low-flow shower head and you’re good to go!
With just a few simple steps, you can start saving money almost instantly.
There are even some rebates from some state and local governments for making water-saving improvements to your home. You can check out the Australian Government’s Rebates and Assistance website HERE.
Choice have an article HERE on types of showerheads and How to buy the most efficient Showerhead.
Add curtains and/or blinds
You can add curtains and/or blinds to save money on energy costs. Curtains and blinds can be an inexpensive way to add style and personality to a room, but also make it easier to keep heat inside during the cold winter months or outside in the summer.
“Windows are a big culprit when it comes to household energy usage. Seemingly innocent panes of glass can be responsible for significant movement of heat either into your home in summer or out of your home in winter – causing your heating and cooling costs to rise as a result. Up to 10 times as much heat can be lost from a single pane of glass versus the same area of insulated wall, with up to 87% of a home’s heat gained through windows in the summer months. You only need to hold your hand up against a window on a cold winter’s day to feel how glacial it can get.”redenergy.com.au/living-energy/energy-saving/what-are-the-most-energy-efficient-window-coverings
Depending on the type of window covering you actually choose, they can:
- Trap a layer of air next to your window
- Greatly minimise the movement of heat into or out of your house
- Provide shade and UV protection against the harsh sun.
An investment in window coverings can not only make your home look more attractive, but it can reduce your energy usage, and keep you warmer in winter and cooler in summer.
Make your own cleaning solutions
You can make your own cleaning solutions to save you money on chemical-based products. By using items like vinegar and baking soda, you can make all-purpose cleaner, window cleaner and floor cleaner—all for a fraction of the cost of store-bought cleaners. Not only will this save you money, but it’s also safer for your health since these natural ingredients don’t contain any harsh chemicals. Check out my article HERE on The Soap Scam.
In addition to being an economical choice, homemade cleaning solutions are just as effective as their store-bought counterparts. Plus, you’ll be able to customize them based on your own preferences in terms of scent and strength.
DIY cleaning solutions are a great way to save money while keeping your home clean. Those store bought chemical cleaning solutions are only increasing in price too! Taking a look online, a bottle of Windex window cleaner will cost you just under $6, while Jif cream is almost $5 and Ajax kitchen cleaner spray bottle is $7! These don’t last very long either!
Install ceiling fans
You can install ceiling fans to save you money on your cooling costs. Ceiling fans can be purchased for a reasonable price (starting from $66 at Bunnings), and are easy to install, but you will probably need a qualified electrician to do this for you. This should only cost you a couple of hundred dollars to get the fan installed, and the yet the long-term savings will be very much worth it.
Not only will this save you money in the long-term by reducing air conditioning bills, but it also helps to improve air circulation throughout your home. You can find instructions online that explain how to install ceiling fans yourself, but it’s best to hire a professional for this. With the right supplies and knowledge however, installing ceiling fans can be one of the most cost effective at-home DIY projects around.
“The average ceiling fan will consume between 60w and 100w of energy, not much more than a 60w light bulb, and so are an extremely energy efficient form of cooling and heating. Compare this to a 2.5Kw air conditioner, which uses around 2,500w per hour to run.”rovert.com.au/5-ways-to-save-money-with-ceiling-fans
Painting to save you money is one of the most popular DIY projects. Not only can it make your room look better, but it also increases the value of your home! Paint is relatively inexpensive and easy to use. To get started, you’ll need a few basic tools such as a paint brush, roller, drop cloths, and painter’s tape. You may also want to invest in a primer or sealant before starting so that your paint job lasts longer. Once everything has been gathered and prepped properly, you can begin painting.
To save even more money on this project, consider using leftover paint from previous jobs instead of buying brand new cans for each section. Although it requires patience and some elbow grease, painting yourself is an effective way to cut costs, as hiring professional painters can get very expensive, depending on how many rooms or how much of your home you are wanting to be painted.
There are plenty of videos on YouTube for beginners, with tutorials on how to paint your home, such as this one HERE –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLbUIevOxzY
You could even paint or spray paint old furniture items to re sell online, or just spruce up for yourself too.
Got a blank wall somewhere inside or outside? Consider painting some chalk paint on and you’ve got a chalkboard for the kids, without buying a whole easel to clutter up your space!
Wash and detail your car
You can wash and detail your own car to save money on costly car washes. It may take a while, but it will save you money in the long run.
Gather up your supplies:
- Bucket and sponge
- Car wash soap and wax
- Some clean rags or microfiber towels
and get dirty while you clean your car!
The price of getting your car washed and detailed these days is going through the roof!
On a quick search, I found the following prices at a Sydney car wash:
For an average SUV:
Express wash (no interior): From $35
Platinum wash (no polish): From $65
Wash and polish: From $100
If you’re getting this done at a minimum of once per month, for a wash and polish, that’s more than $1200 per year, just for washing your car!
Yes, it can take time to do it yourself, but this only has to take you an hour or two on a free afternoon, every few weeks, or hey, you could even teach the kids how to do it and start giving them pocket money to help you.
Mowing and gardening yourself
Hiring someone to come and mow the lawn, do the edges, trim the bushes and take care of the general gardening can get expensive!
The average lawn mowing rate across Australia is $55 per hour. (Hi Pages.com.au). If you’re adding on edges, weeding and other services, this can add up into the hundreds, just for one visit!
You can get yourself a secondhand lawn mower, whipper snipper and other gardening tools on FB marketplace or Gumtree (if you don’t already have them) and save yourself a lot of cash by spending an hour or two on these projects yourself.
If you would prefer a lower maintenance garden space that can save you even more money (and time), Jim’s Mowing has some Landscaping Tips that can save you money in the long run. You can check them out HERE.
Minimise, declutter and sell unwanted items!
An easy home DIY project that can involve the whole family is to minimise your belongings, de clutter, sort out what you actually want and need, from the items that are just there taking up hidden storage space. The kids can let you know what toys they no longer use, you can sell clothes that are no longer needed and sell unused appliances, games, books, power tools, knick knacks and furniture. I have some tips HERE on how to sell your items online, and I’ve personally done this many times over to make heaps of extra cash and to live a more minimal lifestyle.
You would be surprised how much money you can make once you start listing items for sale online, and don’t be fooled into thinking nobody wants that $5 vase! Every $5 sale adds up, and once you start getting some cash in your hand from selling items that were just cluttering up your living space, you’ll likely get hooked on it! I know I did. If you have quite a few items, you could have a garage sale. I have friends that have had garage sales recently and made thousands in one day!
A few sold items, some extra cash in your wallet and some more uncluttered space can leave you with money for groceries for the week, a tidier, cleaner home space and it can teach the kids some important lessons on recycling and repurposing items, how to make extra money, how to negotiate with others and how to prioritise what we actually want and need in our homes, rather than just collecting items for the sake of it. Check out my book review of Essentialism which is an awesome read on minimalism and decluttering.
Call some of these DIY projects, some of them chores you can do with the family rather than paying someone else to do them, but there’s 10 ideas on projects and things you can do around the home to save you money now and in the long term.
Do you have any easy DIY home projects you could recommend for saving money or saving time?
Let us know in the comments just below!