Sometimes designers re-upholster a tabletop, to save money and get a certain texture. This table's design can be replicated by cutting a piece of wood, wrapping it in burlap and securing it to the top of the table, and lacquering it. “It gives you a great look that’s retro, but warm,” says Atlanta designer Michael Habachy.
Use cost-saving standard colors in one area so you can splurge in other areas. The homeowners in this Atlanta neighborhood worked with designer Thea Quillian to plan their kitchen, and originally wanted to install blue upper cabinets. When they found white cabinets from Ikea at a fraction of the cost, they realized they could use the savings to afford more pricey walnut countertops.
Save space and add a rustic element with a sliding door. McNeal Walker Interiors repurposed a discarded door they found on the side of the road and turned it into the sliding barn door leading into this en suite bathroom in Atlanta. The door gives the chamber a rustic redo and provides privacy.
Cindi MacPherson, co-owner of The Interior Partners in Atlanta, offers this way to save on pillows in a chic living room. Use patterned fabric, which may be more expensive, on the front of the pillow. Then buy cheaper fabric in a solid color for the back of the pillow, which often is hidden on a couch.
Go for a high-gloss effect. A smaller group of gray Ikea cabinets, used in an Atlanta mid-century modern kitchen, gives a steel sheen to the space, which was previously designed by Brian Patrick Flynn as his personal residence.
Let your love for vintage jars shine. Light fixtures made from Mason jars fit with a vintage, rustic or farmhouse kitchen design. These single pendants made of upcycled jars cost about $125 each, says Atlanta designer Jenn Ryan, owner of Jenn Ryan Designs and Reclaimed Lighting. Chandeliers made with a trio of Mason jars can also be found for less than $200 through online artisan marketplaces.
You can turn anything into a collection. Group a trio of mirrors with an interesting finish, such as an antique patina, on a wall for instant artwork. If you find mirrors with different sizes and frames at a yard sale or thrift store, patina the frames and mirrors to achieve the same look. “Grouping affordable mirrors is a great way to add charm and interest to a wall,” says Julie Montgomery, owner of Julie Montgomery Interiors in Atlanta.
A new rug took up $110 of the $500 budget. Designer Heather Hogan Roberts found this fleece rug with a geometric pattern on sale and saved more with a 10 percent off coupon. She bought two ikat window panels and got one for 40 percent off. Those savings allowed her to buy discounted fabric for custom pillows and the elephant end table, which cost $40 at a thrift shop. The fiddle-leaf fig adds natural beauty to a corner with no need for wall art.
Marla and Mike are buying a house together in Pittsburgh before they are engaged. Despite every intention of getting married, Marla's family doesn't like the idea of them committing to a mortgage before they commit to each other. They find what they think is the perfect house, but tensions rise just days before signing on the dotted line. Will this young couple seal the deal or is this all happening too fast?
Frankie, a picky, perfectionist nurse at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, has his mind set on finding a rowhouse with all the bells and whistles under 200-thousand dollars. He always gets what he wants, so why should this be any different? Will Frankie's diva attitude get in the way of his house hunt? Or will he be able to find exactly what he wants because he sticks to his guns?
An Annapolis couple wants a home for $500,000 by the water, but their long list of must have's make the search futile. Shermeen finally convinces Sunny to bail on the waterfront, but Sunny insists that the house has to "blow him away." Are their expectations condemning them to search forever?
Newlyweds Christina and Randald moved back to Massachusetts to be closer to her family. It's challenging to find what they want under their price ceiling of $300K, so how strict will they be when the deal comes down to whether the sellers fix the water heater?
Julia and Matt have good jobs, a healthy savings account and big dreams of buying their first place. But Julia's past credit history comes back to haunt them. She's paid every penny but still can't be on the mortgage application. Their idea of the perfect first home will have to change as they get a financial reality check.
Paul is a single dad who wants to buy a cool first place in Austin so that he can give his teenage son a permanent home. But will his variable incomelimit their search to the cheap properties? Or can they find the perfect place and still come in under-budget?
Living near public transportation is a top consideration for first-time buyers Kristy and Doug, as Kristy has vision issues that make living near public transporation a must. But these two attorneys are more than ready to drive a hard bargain when it comes to negotiating on the sales price. Will they lose sight of what's most important in their quest to get a good deal?
Courtney and her French husband, Benoit, are on deadline to buy their first place before their first baby arrives. After looking at several Pittsburgh homes and disagreeing completely on their style, the couple has some compromising to do. But will this expectant couple agree on a home before their bundle of joy arrives?
Aaron and his girlfriend, Ashley, will only buy a home in one specific neighborhood in Dallas called Lake Ridge Estates. The problem affordable homes in the area rarely come on the market and when they do are snatched up quickly. When they finally find a home in the neighborhood, someone puts an offer in before them and they lose the house. Their realtor takes them to another home in area and they immediately decide to put in an offer. Unfortunately at the same exact moment a competing offer comes in so the are now in a bidding war. Will they finally win this fight or will their search never end?
Carolyn and Devon set out to find a house in a specific walkable DC neighborhood, but struggle to find suitable space for his 6 bikes. When they find the right place, stiff competition convinces them to put down $50,000 earnest money, which they will lose if they walk away. Will their gamble pay off, or leave then flat broke?
Sandi and John are approved for over a half-million dollars and are looking for a perfect house in Dallas. Sandi knows what she wants, and what she doesn't want, and is not going to settle for anything less. When she and John don't see eye-to-eye on the right price for perfection, they get caught in offer limbo. A new-build may just fit the bill, but is it everything Sandi imagined?
With their conflicting taste, it's hard to imagine Audra and Justin ever agreeing on a house. But when they finally find a home that meets all their must-haves, they impulsively leap before looking. Can they get out of this contract? And will they ever find a place they both love?
A couple living in downtown Baltimore, Maryland is tired of noise and no parking. With a baby on the way and their apartment lease nearly up, they're under pressure to find their first place quickly. But Dan would love to live way out in the country, while Griffin wants the convenience of suburbia. Complicating matters, their first place can't be too far of a commute for Dan who works in downtown Baltimore. Finally they agree on a suburban home that's been newly renovated, but there are three other buyers interested as well. Dan and Griffin have to figure out a negotiating strategy that will ensure they get the only home they can both agree on.
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