You set a budget by first deciding what rooms you need to decorate. You do this when you finish analyzing your home. After you make your notes, sit down and decide what areas of your home you want to concentrate on.
If you are having a new baby or have an addition to your home, this is easy. You will likely select these rooms to decorate first. If you plan to decorate multiple rooms in a home, this can be a bit more challenging but certainly not impossible. You will simply need to learn how to prioritize your interior decorating, and learn how to create an interior without spending too much. (We will learn more about that later).
So first, set a budget. How do you do that, right?
The answer is simple. Find out how much money you have available for decorating.
Consider when setting your budget your monthly income, your bills, and how much money you can afford to spend on decorating without feeling guilty, and without increasing your debt-to-income ratio. Meaning, you want to avoid going into debt simply by furnishing your home. So figure out how much money you have to play with. Write this number down, because you will refer back to it often when selecting instruments to decorate your home.
When creating a budget, you may find a few items you want to charge. This is ok, just make sure you can pay for those items in a short time. If you charge too much when decorating, you may end up paying ten times more for interior decorating than you wanted to. Remember all charge cards carry interest rates. Unless you can pay off what you charge within a month’s time, think long and hard before considering your credit balance as part of your budget.
After creating a budget, follow these steps to help you analyze your home’s needs:
- Prioritize the rooms you want to decorate. Label each room. When the time comes to decorate, you will start with the room at the top of your list. You may stop there until you have more money to decorate other rooms, or move to another room if you still have some spare cash. You may find using the tips in this guide, you can decorate all the rooms in your home to your heart’s desire. It all depends on your budget, and how much time you want to spend on do-it-yourself projects.
- Determine how much money you have available to use for interior decorating. You established your budget when calculating your expenses for the month. If you have several rooms to decorate, consider dividing your budget by the number of rooms you want to decorate. You may then allocate slightly more or less to rooms that need more help than others. For example, you may want to spend more money when decorating the living or dining areas than you spend in your bedrooms.
- Create a list of the rooms you can decorate based on your budget in the immediate future. Sometimes the room you prioritize as #1 may be too expensive to decorate in the short-term. Try to make small changes, and select another high-priority room to decorate that fits within your current budget. If you have only one room, use the money you do have to decorate the room as much as you can by using the tips provided in this guide. Start with high-priority items. You can always decorate your room further when you have more income to spare.
- Make sure you note items you have already that you can refurbish to improve the look and feel of your home, and items you need to replace or buy new (as in the case of a new room or home). Anything you can refurbish will probably cost less than items you must buy new. Sometimes you have to reevaluate any preconceived notions you have about what interior decorating is or is not. Remember, the goal here is to create a fresh look for the rooms in your home without spending a fortune. This may require some hands-on work. You may find you love and enjoy the process, most people find it very therapeutic. Once you finish decorating your rooms, feel proud you had a hand in creating the ambience you did.
Once you set up a budget, spend some time shopping around and reading through the ideas in this book. If you find you only have enough money to work on one or two rooms, start your own design “savings” jar. This is nothing more than an empty jar you can stash a small amount of money away in, loose change etc., for a few months, to save for your next decorating extravaganza. Make sure you do not take money out of this jar. If you feel tempted to do so, then set up a CD or closed bank account where you are penalized for removing your savings too early. Saving for interior decorating is much like saving for retirement. You want to stash away your money wisely and safely, and only draw on it when the time comes to do so without penalty.
Sometimes, a little spare change is all it takes…
Some people collect spare change to pay for a night on the town. If you want to decorate your home, save your spare change for interior decorating. Keep a piggy bank full of coins, and you will find before you know it you have just the right amount of money to pay for what you need.
Now is time to move on to the fun part. You know what rooms you want to decorate, you have a budget. Now is the time to decide what type of person you are, and what themes or styles you want your home to reflect. Most homes reflect the personality and preferences of the owner. Make sure you spend time analyzing your own preferences, so when you do decorate, you make choices you feel happy with.