Thinking about the next big upgrade for your home?
With tax season drawing to an end and stimulus checks in the bank, it’s hard not to dream! But before you buy new kitchen countertops or a fancy vanity for your bathroom, think outside the box …or better yet, think outside your home!
Porches offer more versatility than most other spaces. They provide curb appeal and usable square footage for your household and guests. Plus, you can give your porch quite an update without breaking the bank.
(No need to neglect your interior, however. Here are tips for a $500 kitchen renovation.)
Here are a few mix-and-match ideas for a budget of $300 and under:
Lay down an outdoor rug
Cost: $100 at Rugs.com
A rug adds color and texture to your porch. However, there is a difference between indoor and outdoor rugs. Outdoor rugs are made of durable materials that can withstand the elements. They won’t fade or start to smell as easily as indoor rugs, and cleaning them is typically easier. Most just need to be hosed down and sun-dried.
Install a ceiling fan
Cost: $150 at Overstock
A ceiling fan on your porch can stir up a nice breeze. Plus, it will help keep mosquitoes away. Porches are usually wired for lighting already, so installation shouldn’t be too complicated. When looking for one to buy, make sure it’s rated for outdoor use.
Psst … deck needs some love? Check out our guide to deck maintenance.
Upgrade your furniture
Cost: $100 at athome.com
Don’t worry, you don’t need a whole new furniture set. Simple upgrades to older furniture can go a long way. For example, try weather-resistant throw pillows for a pop of color. A new coffee table can really pull the space together. And you can always give your old furniture a fresh look with a simple paint job. Get creative — a little goes a long way.
Turn the railing into a bar
Cost: $160 on Etsy
When having guests over, a gathering space is crucial. Add a few stools and attach a piece of 2-by-12″ wood on top of the railing and voila! You’ve got a bar. If you’re looking for something a bit fancier, you can buy custom-made railing bars that are stained, sealed, and cut to fit your particular porch.
Hang a porch swing
Cost: $150 at Wayfair
What’s more relaxing than a summer evening spent rocking on a porch swing? We can’t think of anything. Try a natural wood swing with rope hangers for a country feel or solid white with stainless steel chains for a classic look. As a side note, not all porch swings come stained and sealed. Along with hanging them, they often require some extra weatherproofing.
Add a trellis and climbing plants
Cost: $28 at Home Depot
A trellis adds natural beauty and a bit of privacy to your porch as the crisscrossed panels provide excellent support for climbing plants. Some even have built-in planters for bases. And don’t forget to buy your plants! If you’re looking for plants that flower, try wisteria, honeysuckle, or passionflower vine. For something simple and hearty, ivy or a hops vine should do the trick.
Warm-up with some mood lighting
Cost: $50 at Crate&Barrel
Mood lighting tops off any porch with a touch of personal style. Candles provide a calm glow for a relaxing evening, colored lights add a festive flair for a party, and Edison bulb string lights give your porch some seriously classy vibes. Mix-and-match styles, or choose a few easy-to-switch options for different occasions.
Ready to do more? Check out these outdoor space tips: