Easy ideas for adding value to your home

When she was seven years old, Eden decided she wanted to have a four-poster bed. She went into the ravine behind her parents’ house, dragged some huge branches home, and duct-taped them to her bed.

Over the years she’s tackled many more complex projects, but she credits that one experience with showing her that she could do things for herself.

“It’s always worth a try,” she said. “You never know what you’ll end up with, and it means a lot more than just buying it.”

Eden’s foray into home improvement started with painting. Surprised at how much easier it was than she expected, she went on to installing new door handles in her home. Next she dabbled in electricity by adding dimmer switches.

“With every project, I grew more and more confident,” she said. “Sure, there were some scary moments, but the more I learned, the easier things got.”

One of Eden’s biggest motivations for DIY home improvement is the financial savings that come with some sweat equity. She appreciates the finer things, but she also knows the value of a dollar. By doing things from scratch or reinventing things on her own, she’s able to get what she wants and save some money.

Eden said and Craigslist are two of her favorite online spots for scouting good deals.

“I found a great old lamp on eBay for $20, but it didn’t have a lampshade,” she said. “I bought a new, modern-style lampshade and the final product was a great mix of antique and modern.”

In addition to saving money, Eden also uses DIY home improvement to add value to her home. Her advice: concentrate your efforts on projects that stay with the place even after you leave.

“Look at the bathroom, the kitchen and the closets, because what you do in there is going to stay and it’s going to get you some extra money when you go,” said Eden.

For more DIY instruction that’ll help you afford the luxury you long for, take a look at BeJane, a community where eager do-it-herselfers connect, share advice and empower one another to tackle home improvement projects—no husbands necessary.

Tough–and Girlie
Power tools for ladies? It’s true! At Tomboy Tools, you can find a full array of power tools and home remodeling tips designed with women in mind.

A Few Simple Steps
The world’s biggest DIY guidebook, Instructables has digestible directions on everything from hanging curtains to building a pizza oven.

Just Do It Yourself
Earth-friendly and wallet-conscious, ReadyMade helps you claim your corner of the world and decorate it just the way you want it.