Easy Home Repairs You Can Do in One Weekend
It’s finally Friday and you’re ready to kick back and relax. But how can you rest when there’s a hole in your drywall staring you in the face? Don’t worry, with these simple projects, you can get a lot of home improvement power without throwing yourself into a time crunch. A better home with time to spare? Check it out below.
Cook Up a Cabinet Update
An impressive and efficient cookspace is well within your reach — and fits into a busy weekend schedule, as well. One of the simplest ways to get a big wow on a tiny budget is to look to your kitchen backsplash. Backsplashes don’t have to be elaborate features made from expensive and labor-intensive tile or stone. You can get many of the same beautification benefits using affordable faux beadboard, a thin, grooved material that adds a polished visual to your kitchen walls. Cut the board to fit around cabinets and outlets and then just slap it on with some liquid nails.
Looking for an even lighter commitment? There are ways to splash up the area behind your cabinets without going overboard. Namely, contact paper or vinyl shelf paper makes for a lighthearted (and removable!) project that dishes out color and design like nothing else.
Next, move inside cabinets and drawers. Cookware organization is no longer limited to simple cutlery separators. You can get inserts and pull-out systems for even the most awkward supplies (hello, hand mixers!). If that sounds too rich for your blood, though, you can get the same effect from hanging baskets and mesh file organizers scored from the dollar store. Bingo! A kitchen rehab with ample time left over to whip up an old-fashioned Sunday dinner.
Turn Your Master Bath Into a Spa-Worthy Retreat
These days, bathrooms do a lot more than they used to. Specifically, the trend du jour is to convert perfunctory bathrooms into luxury retreats. But that’s hard to do when yours is crying out for a little TLC.
Where to start? Take a look at your bathroom fixtures. Acrylic faucet handles, popular as they once were, have largely gone out of style, so replacing those with a sleeker, stainless steel model will get you an instant design boost. Plus, many newer models feature water-saving technology, meaning you might save a little bit on your utility bills. Swapping out a bathroom faucet is pretty simple, too — just make sure you buy the right kind for your sink. For instance, don’t purchase a widespread faucet for a centerset faucet head. Essentially all you have to do is disconnect the water supply lines and remove the old faucet and tailpiece. Then just follow the installation instructions to put in the new faucet. Anytime you finish a plumbing project you definitely feel like a home improvement rockstar.
However, that brand new faucet won’t have as much impact if your tub or sink aren’t spotless. Nothing drags down bathroom decor faster than ugly stains, but there’s a quick fix for that, too. Cream of tartar, which you can get in the spice section of the grocery store, can be mixed with lemon juice and baking soda to cut through rust and soap scum. Just let it sit on the porcelain for half an hour, then wipe those stains away and get on with the rest of your day. Weekend plans? Luxuriating in your new bathroom utopia.
Rehabilitate Your Fireplace
Now that the cold weather is in full swing, you’ve probably had plenty of time to check out your fireplace. If you’ve examined yours and found it lacking, don’t worry — you don’t have to live with sooty brick. There are plenty of brief and inexpensive projects that will help it shine with its original luster.
Your first move should be a simple cleaning. Often, a little time with a rag is all a fireplace really needs to shine. First, vacuum the surface to get rid of standing dust and soot. Then apply a mixture of one cup dish detergent to three tablespoons table salt and scrub the brick or stone down with a sponge. Not doing the job? Up your cleaning power using a paste made from pumice stone and ammonia, and allow it to sit on the stone for up to 10 minutes. Then scrub it down again.
And for the exterior? Simply painting stained or outdated brick in a modern color, like gray or cream, can be a fast fix to save an aging hearth — and it’s super-affordable too. If you want to go the extra mile, installing a faux stone veneer over brick makes for a pretty simple project. All you need is natural edge faux stone and an adhesive kit. The adhesive spreads right on the back of the stone panels and sticks to the existing brick or stone. Definitely a project you can accomplish with time to spare!
Add Polish to Damaged Walls and Baseboard
Over time, the wear and tear from rearranging and everyday living can take a real toll on your home’s walls and trim. But those dings, scrapes and drywall holes are huge, needless eyesores — especially since they can usually be patched up with a little elbow grease.
First, let’s start with drywall damage. Small dings and dents usually only need a little spackle, and then can be smoothed, sanded and touched up with paint. A slightly larger hole may require something a bit more drastic, of course. These are best covered with an adhesive mesh patch applied with joint compound, then add a layer of compound on top and sand smooth.
Now that your walls look great again, it’s time to move on to your baseboard molding. You know the drill — foot traffic, scuffs from furniture moving and pets can do a real number on your molding. If you have dents that paint alone won’t hide, you’re going to need something more serious. But luckily, it will still fit into your two-day timeframe. Remember the joint compound that we used in the above section? It’ll be your best friend here, as well. Take that same putty and apply it over the dent, smoothing it with a drywall taping knife. Bingo! Holes and dents are no match for your DIY prowess — and it only took a few hours. Now go enjoy the rest of your weekend. There’s plenty of time until Monday.