Put Wasted Space to Work
Transform a plain wall into a storage and display showcase by adding stacks of open shelves or cutting out the drywall to create a recessed niche.
Accentuate the Architecture
Call on simple molding or trim to draw attention to existing features, such as a high ceiling, or an attractive view from a window. In this cottage bedroom, pronounced beams provide a visual transition between the walls and ceiling.
Install New Lighting
You'll be amazed by how well-placed pools of warm light can make your home inviting and user-friendly. Even inexperienced remodelers can easily install simple plug-in puck lights under kitchen cabinets, inside built-in hutches, or in bookcases
Add Function to an Awkward Space
Transform a basic bay or box window into a reading nook, or furnish an empty corner of the living room with a game table and storage cabinet. These features add value to your home and, when it comes time to sell, will likely resonate with potential buyers.
Upgrade your closets by installing rods on two levels for hanging shirts and pants and adding pullout bins for socks and undergarments. Increase storage in your kitchen cabinets by installing a spice rack or a lazy Susan in a corner cabinet.
Upgrade Your Foyer and Staircase
Since it is the first thing visitors will see when they enter your home, make sure the entryway welcomes them in style. If you can't change the whole space, concentrate on high-impact items. Splurge on the entry flooring, or focus on improving the staircase. Sand and restain treads, paint risers, and replace railings and newels. Be sure to check building codes regarding railing height and spindle spacing.
Polish Up the Laundry Room
Create an attractive, functional laundry room by replacing old appliances with units that offer the latest energy- and fabric-saving features. Also, equip your laundry room with long stretches of counter space for folding clean clothes, tuck-away bins for sorting dirty laundry, cabinets to keep detergents stowed out of sight, and a built-in ironing board.
Find a Spot for Dining
Add a small table at the end of a work island, or fit a bench and a table inside an existing window bay to create a cozy dining alternative to a breakfast bar where diners look at their food instead of one another.
Add an Island
For many homeowners, an island work space is a kitchen must-have. For easy traffic flow, be sure to allow at least 39 inches of space all the way around it, Knott says. Need a budget-friendly island? "Use a sofa table topped with tile, or place two painted chests back-to-back and top with butcher block," Knott says.