When you’re young you don’t have a whole lot of say over how your room or house looks. That’s largely up to your parents. You can put up posters, sure, but as long as you’re dependent upon your folks’ wallet, they call the shots at the homestead.
Things get a little better at college but even there, you’re confined by the layout and furniture in your dorm room, as well as whatever rules the school has about what can and cannot be placed on walls, etc.
It’s easy, after having to wait for more than two decades to make your own decisions, to go overboard on your first apartment. Before you drop all of your savings on that sweet entertainment system or that fancy cooking stuff, though, here are a few tips that you can use to stretch your budget.
1. Fashion Matters….Not
Obviously, you careabout fashion. This is true both of your person and your home. Remember, though, that you want to feel comfortable in your home. More importantly, you want to feel like you can use your home. A home is meant to be lived in; you don’t want your fashion consciousness to lock you into furniture that you’re afraid to sit on because you don’t want to mess it up.
Still—spending time looking at home fashion sites and catalogs is a good idea. It can help you find inspiration for your own home.
2. The Basics
Start with the things you actually need: a bed, a comfortable place to sit and tools for food (making and eating). These are the areas where splurging is a good idea because you want to have quality furniture. You’ll also want to make sure that your linens are of high quality as well. To stretch your budget, check out some of the deals at BBS.
3. Creative Stretching
If you’re in a studio, you’ll find that your bed is going to take up most of your living space and that’s okay. If you’re lucky enough to have a separate living room, though, figuring out how to furnish all that space can be stressful. Here are some hints to help you get what you need without breaking your budget:
- For housing guests, instead of a pull out couch, get a futon. Futons can be folded to function as couches and laid flat to be beds and cost about half what a pull out couch would cost.
- Milk crates can be stacked into fantastic shelves and end tables. Talk to your local grocer about getting some of theirs because they are sturdier than the kind you can find in stores. Spray paint them to fit in with your home’s color scheme.
- Make Your Own! DIY is very in right now and there are all sorts of books and websites that can help you do everything from learning how to make your own throw pillows to creating your own “etched” glassware. Making your own decorative items is a good skill to have (you might even be able to monetize it to earn some extra money) and will save you lots of money.