Question: My fiancé and I just bought our first house. We are excited! The only drawback
is that it’s a townhome in the middle of a big, brand-new townhouse development,
and all the houses look exactly the same. How can we personalize it when we
don’t have much money, or time?
First of all, congratulations on your engagement, and on your first house! This is an exciting time for you, and it’s great that you’re already thinking about how you can create your own special home space together. And, there are so many ways to add some special touches that will take your townhouse beyond boring – and that won’t take too much time or money.
My first and best advice is this. Concentrate on just one project at a time. Trying to juggle multiple ideas and projects at once will exponentially increase the odds that you won’t finish any of them well. Trying to multitask projects could also end up introducing more additional stress into the days leading up to your wedding than either of you really want or need right now!
Just make a list of projects you want to accomplish, and then make a plan of which projects you want to tackle in which order. After that, simply work on projects one-at-a-time as you have the time and budget to do so. Don’t start your next project until the first project is completely finished, and the tools are put away.
But what if you don’t get everything on your townhome improvement list checked off before the wedding day arrives? That’s OK! Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Also remember that “Rome” actually rhymes with “townhome” (there’s no tip here, just wanted to bless you with that little nugget). Having a few projects to work on after the honeymoon can also provide some fun couple activities to enjoy together in the days to come!
Ok, let’s get down to some tips and suggestions. First, before you do anything outside, look into your homeowners’ association (if you have one). Most townhome communities have guidelines about what is permissible in terms of modifying the outside of your home or yard. It’s not worth bending those rules; understand what boundaries (again, if any) have been set for your freedom of creative expression.
Hopefully they’ll let you do my first suggestion, which is to paint your front door! Go as bold as they’ll let you. Red, dark green, bright yellow, or a deep blue all look great with typical townhome color schemes and natural woods. This is one simple, affordable, and effective way to set your townhouse apart from all the others – plus, it makes your home easier to find when you’re having friends over. You can add some great plant containers to further personalize your front porch, as well.
Inside, you might have more freedom for expression. In the kitchen, a simple way to customize is by adding or replacing some charming drawer and cabinet pulls. Redoing the backsplash over the counter is another good way to add your personal touch. You can also try changing the dining room light fixture. Depending on your townhome community, you may not have the option to repaint the room, but you can alternatively add some large wall decals for instant character.
Hang large framed mirrors in tight, dark spaces like the entry, hallways and stair landings. You may also be able to tile or paint the fireplace mantel. Another good way to personalize your space is by adding area rugs, even if you have carpet.
In the bathroom, you can always spruce things up by adding a colorful shower curtain and bath accessories. Durable art such as an interesting old shutter or garden gate are great ways to add personality. Items like these can often be found at antique shops, or you might even luck up with one of these great finds at a local yard sale! Changing out the towel racks and hooks is another way to add a personal touch on a budget.
And when you’re ready to add some personal coziness to your bedroom, there’s no better one-stop shop than the Home by Jennifer Adams collection! We’re all about Redefining Soft, and our luxury bedding sets, comforters, sheet sets, and pillows feel like they were custom-made just for you. We also provide the most comfortable mattresses you’ll find anywhere, and we have other great throws, home décor items, and gifts you’re sure to enjoy.