Doing up a house on the cheap!

(11 Posts)
EddieIzzardIsOrange Sun 03-Feb-13 12:03:09

Sorry posted this in chat before I realised this would be a better place to put it, hope someone can help- My FIL passed away just before Christmas and now we are looking at moving into his house (had a meeting with the bank yesterday which all seems positive but waiting for probate to go through)

However the house is in a not great condition, structurally sound but not decorated, repaired or cleaned in the last 20 years or so

So, asking for tips how to get it into a habitable condition on a very limited budget? And where might be a good idea to pick up furniture, curtains, carpets etc?

I've had a look at ebay but we dont drive so unless its within 5/10 miles that could be done in a taxi its probably too expensive with courier fees on top. Looked on reecycle too but theres a lot more 'wanteds' than 'offers' in my area

Possibly being a bit unrealistic but am 23 weeks pregnant and would like to be in before baby born (have a 2 year old DS too) but the sooner we're in the hose we're saving a little bit of much-needed money as mortgage is cheaper than rent

Poor DP is slowly hacking off dirty, smoke stained woodchop wall paper there right now! Any advice appreciated, first time we've done this!

jinglebellmel Sun 03-Feb-13 12:47:47

Don't know if you have any near you, but we have a British Heart foubdation charity shop which does just furniture. Its very cheap (has some new items donated by shops) and also has a delivery service. Failing that you can't go wrong with ikea if you're are working to a tight budget.
As for carpets, our local carpet warehouse sells offcuts cheaply, often they are quite big and we have done a reasonable size room for about £50 that way.
The B&Q colours paint is quite good and pretty cheap, or if you want a similar coulour throughout you could buy a big tub of trade paint?

Good luck!

forevergreek Sun 03-Feb-13 12:59:28

look on freecycle for adds of unwanted furniture

by the minimum you need and add as you go (im assuming you already had basics from where you are living now, like somewhere for you all to sleep etc)

what is budget? does it stretch to ikea? as they now deliver many bits. cheap but good furniture for things like wardbrobes/draws/toy storage

you can buy a type of wallpaper that works like replastering. you have to have first layer horizonally accross walls, then vertically over the top. not sure what its called but i recall my parents used and i think from b and q or the likes. you can then just paint over it like you would fresh blank walls.

what are the floorboards like? can they be sanded and varnished? a sander is around £30-50 a day to hire (big one)- maybe cheaper depending where you are

paint all walls white for now. its the cheapest colour and you can add pictures/ kids art work in rooms for colour.

mention on facebook or similar what you are looking for and people might be getting rid of things.

can you go to a bootfair with a friend in car (maybe not until easter as cold/wet) but often furniture and anything else, and often they will drop off if large and in the direction people are driving home after (can always offer £5 if they deliver)

charity shops

UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea Sun 03-Feb-13 13:06:28

Charity shops.

Local paper small ads.

Preloved and Gumtree

Ask around, people are always getting rid of stuff, as long as you are not picky and you end up pissing them off.

Car boot sales - a lift with a friend.

Mumsnet local?

jaynebxl Sun 03-Feb-13 19:08:29

Do you have an Emmaus near you? They are great for hidden treasures of furniture. I think they may even deliver.

And furniture wise - if you are feeling cheeky enough you could drop a note round to anyone with a "sold" sign close enough and say you are looking to start from scratch and may be interested in any bits of spare furniture/household stuff etc - depends on your cheek factor though. Ditto someone doing a building project. Post move into our renovation I have stuff that is still lovely but doesn't go or fit into our new house - from a breadbin, a rug, bookshelf to a chest of drawers. All just shoved in the loft/garage for now. If I knew were setting up home I would happily pass them on {guilty emoticon at how much of our junk we passed on to DSIL last year}.

myron Sun 03-Feb-13 22:48:48

I would do one room at a time - starting with your bedrooms. Having a clean fresh bedroom to escape/sleep in makes it less daunting and you can take your time with the rest of the house. Stripping off woodchip inevitably means replastering unless you are really lucky. If you haven't already done so, hire a big steam wall paper stripping machine from HSS for the weekend plus the pointy needle roller thingy - it'll make life a lot easier for your DP! Agree that you should just use trade matt white paint. You can get really good deals regarding underlay & carpet from your local independants. Focus on the basics - get the walls painted & new flooring down. I would make do with your existing furniture (assuming you already have some).

jaynebxl Sun 03-Feb-13 23:07:16

That's interesting myron, cos I would always start with the lounge and kitchen so I had nice places when visitors came!

cantspel Sun 03-Feb-13 23:20:20

I would do the lounge first too as you can always shut the door on the bedroom but it is harder to get away from the living areas.

Is there any furniture left in the house? Even if it is old fashioned, chipped or stained it could still come up a treat if stripped and painted. Look in the bargain bins of the major diy chains for odds and ends of paint.

If the walls are bad once stripped and you cant afford to re plaster then use a thick anaglypta wallpaper which can be painted. Wilkinsons sell it pretty cheap and their own paint is good and alot cheaper than named brands.

Carpet i would look for roll ends from your local independent carpet shop. Curtains ebay as you can get some bargains even taking into account postage.

7to25 Mon 04-Feb-13 10:11:43

Curtains,
if you know a local curtain maker, she may know of old curtains being replaced that may be sold for a nominal fee.

Elliptic5 Mon 04-Feb-13 14:29:15

myron is so right re the steam wallpaper stripper - been using one this weekend, probably my best toy ever (what a sad life I lead grin ). I cannot believe how much easier it makes stripping woodchip; mind you the walls were in a terrible state behind it but ho hum such is life.

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