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LifestyleHome and Garden

Tips for updating your home without a major renovation

Try an accent wall in a trendy color

Try an accent wall in a trendy color to give a house with light-colored walls an easy spark. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Polarica

It happens without warning. You walk into your home one day after work or maybe a weekend away and you notice that the whole house seems lackluster. But how do you update your style without major renovations or buying all new furniture? Even simple changes and swaps can create an environment that feels fresh and appealing.


Contrast is one of the easiest ways to give your home a quick pick-me-up. If your home is all white inside, try an accent wall in a trendy color. This gives you a pop of color without a major commitment to it. Or try adding bold graphic wallpaper for some interest.

If your home is painted in out-of-fashion colors, lighten up dark trim and cabinets with white or cream. This is especially true if your home has a Tuscan or Old World style with lots of brown and yellow shades. These colors can weigh down a room and make it feel dark and heavy.


Just like fashion, lighting follows trends. And when you want to make a quick update, lighting is an easy way to make your home feel more current.

If your fixtures are dated, try swapping them out with a newer style. If it’s just a matter of color, try repainting them with a different color, such as silver, burnished gold or even cream. Highlight accent areas with silver, gold or copper.

Lamps can also date a room. Fortunately, there are plenty of home stores where you can buy lamps inexpensively and create a big change. Lastly, try swapping out ceiling fans with a light fixture. Adding a chandelier or light fixture where a ceiling fan used to be is a fast update.


Whether it’s upholstery or curtains, throw pillows or bedding, lightening and brightening your fabrics is a quick way to add a touch of newness to your rooms.

Replace dark, old throw pillows with lighter versions that have a bold print. Swap out old rugs for a new style. Home stores often have rugs that are priced reasonably and can really change a room.

Give windows a swap by adding new panels, removing panels or simply matching panels with your wall color. This easy tip makes a room look sophisticated. Re-cover dining chairs with slip seats and place chair covers over wood chairs. Give the bedroom updated bedding and drapes for an almost-instant change.


No room shows its age like a bathroom. Because they’re typically smaller, go all out and repaint walls and cabinetry and replace handles and pulls. Swap out the shower curtain, light fixtures and sink fixtures, and you’ve got a new look in an afternoon. Don’t forget your guest bathroom. Make it into a little jewel box with spiffed-up lighting, fixtures and paint.

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