If your home needs a refresh, you're not alone. Some 48% of Canadian homeowners are looking to spruce up their living space. 

The good news? There are several projects that you can do in as little as a weekend to transform your living area, making it more enjoyable today and perhaps adding value for the future. Here's how to achieve the home of your dreams through DIY projects.


When to DIY

Not all projects lend themselves to DIY, even for the handiest homeowners. Hiring a professional when it comes to electrical and plumbing projects or renovations could bring up building code issues, such as adding a room. According to many provincial regulations, these projects usually require a licensed contractor. 

While researching your DIY project, determine how long it will take you based on your schedule and how much time the pros recommend. Consider how much it will cost, and how much you will have to learn to accomplish the project. Knowing these 3 things can help you weigh whether the project is worth your time and effort or if your money is better spent hiring a pro. 


Where to find help

If you aren't sure where to begin, try your local home improvement store. RONA Home & Garden offers free construction plans. Lowes has a library of DIY videos and articles on their website. Home Depot hosts free workshops each month to teach tips and beginner tutorials. 

YouTube is also a wonderful resource for free home renovation help. You can find helpful videos for virtually anything, from installing new flooring to fixing a leaking dishwasher. Follow Home RenoVision DIY and This Old House for beginner and advanced home remodeling videos. 


Four DIYs that boost home value 

Before you dive into multiple projects, decide which area of your home you want to change the most. It's wise to choose an area that will also increase your home value. HGTV determined that a minor bathroom remodel is the best investment since it can recoup 102% of cost during resale. In comparison, transforming a bonus room into an office would likely only reap about a 73% return. 

Here are four affordable and easy-to-learn redos that will give you a noticeable transformation in little time. 

1. Change the wall colour: Something as simple as new paint can transform your space. A neutral colour like cool grey or beige can make a room feel bigger and more appealing. A warm, welcoming colour like a dark blue or espresso makes a visual impact. Depending on how large your room is, changing the colour of a room can be done in a weekend's time with little experience and without many specialty tools. 

2. Stain cabinets: Replacing kitchen and bathroom cabinets is expensive. Instead, refresh them with a new stain. Using a cabinet transformation kit — easily found online or at your local home improvement store — will give you most of the material you need and expedite the process. The project might take longer if your existing cabinets are in poor shape and require extra sanding and prep work. Don't forget to add new cabinet hardware after staining to elevate your new look. 

3. Build a deck: Add an entertaining space and place for your family to relax outdoors with a deck. A simple low-level option can be built in less than a week. Decorate with comfortable seating and outdoor lighting, and it will become the star of your yard. The hardest part of this project is planning and cutting your wood to the right size for your deck. Once your materials are ready, it's like assembling a big puzzle.

4. Add a backsplash: From mosaic tile to peel-and-stick tile, adding a backsplash to a kitchen, bathroom or laundry room can breathe new life into the space. A backsplash adds a focal point and covers that unsightly or awkward gap between counters and cabinets. Attaching a backsplash behind kitchen counters or above a bathtub requires meticulous work and a good eye for detail, but it can be done in a day or 2.

Turn your living space into the home you love without a lot of time and money. These projects will transform your house and can even add value to your space if you choose to sell.