Buying fixer-upper properties are a popular choice, particularly among first-time buyers struggling to get on the overcrowded and expensive property ladder. Of course they’re more affordable, but the other appeal is that they offer endless opportunities to make it feel your own.
Opting for a DIY choice isn’t without its challenges though, particularly if you have little (or no) experience. Costs can quickly add up if you’re relying on tradespeople and always buying new – this is something I’ve learnt first-hand after buying my first (doer-upper) home.
What’s the solution? Thankfully, the world of social media is a useful resource for just about anything. But for me, I’ve found it particularly beneficial for the renovation and home ownership journey. With endless inspiration, tutorials and tips on how to save money, TikTok is a firm favourite. From learning how to upcycle a headboard to how to tile a wall, it’s helped more than I had anticipated.
Take for example @Our_Bears_Home, who specialises in secondhand finds, Ikea hacks and upcycling projects, her account has ample inspiration. One video proves how simple it is to make your own bouclé headboard out of MDF, foam and fabric – a cost-saving alternative to buying new.
In her TikTok, Kate, the brains behind the @Our_Bears_Home account, explains the entire process, starting with cutting the MDF into an arch with a router before trimming the foam to size and sticking it down with a contact adhesive. The next steps are just as simple and involve using a staple gun to attach a sheet to the board, followed by your fabric of choice.
Having followed Kate’s reupholstering advice, I transformed my dark grey bed frame into a cream design-led piece and saved myself more than £300.
Kate has also shared on TikTok how to upcycle various pieces of Ikea furniture. Whether that’s transforming a sideboard into something that looks far more high-end, or simply how you can paint the brand’s pieces using a £20 primer, her tips have been a saviour during my reno journey – and will undoubtedly help you too.
Another TikTok account that you’ll want to know about ahead of your home ownership journey is @Jamesproperty_. His videos not only provide tips when it comes to completing a variety of DIY tasks, but he also shares information on buying your first home, such as how to boost your credit score and what to do if your property is downvalued.
His recent TikTok video though is one that promises to save you money on your water and energy bill. In the video, James explains how you can order a free water saving box and talks through how to install each item.
There are four items inside, he explains. First up, is a shower regulator – “to install, you simply unscrew the hose from the shower outlet and then screw on the shower regulator, and that’s it,” explains James. He adds that “it’ll instantly reduce your water usage, plus it lowers your energy bill as you don’t need to heat up as much water”.
The second item is a cistern bag, which James says “is designed to save you between one to two litres of water every time you flush”. The third item is a water detection strip that identifies any small leaks in your toilet, which could be adding £250 to your bill. The final thing is a four-minute shower timer, “cutting just a minute off your shower time could save you £105 a year in water bills, and £207 a year in energy bills”, he notes. In light of the current cost of living price hikes, this is of course a handy tip to know.
Another piece of useful reno advice that James has shared is a video on how to tile. In just 10 simple steps, he goes through the entire process – from measuring the wall to how to grout tiles properly.
If like me you’ve recently bought a fixer-upper, turn to TikTok for useful hacks and tutorials that will help you save money during your DIY journey. Good luck!
Don’t do it yourself, do it with TikTok. To learn more visit: https://www.tiktok.com/tag/diyonabudget