Congratulations on turning two homes into one. When you move in with your significant other, it’s a big step and commitment. If you’ve just purchased, then it’s an enormous financial obligation as well. One of the most daunting aspects of merging homes is combining your separate set of ideas into a cohesive and enjoyable home. That, and not wasting your life savings in the process.
The First Step
Before you hit the paint store and scour for decor inspiration, the two of you should put your heads together and agree on both a budget and an overall design scheme. Sassy Townhouse Living blog recommends that your first goal should be to decide which of your separate belongings will soon come together. Once you have your key pieces in mind, you can get to work choosing new furniture and accents that unify your individual styles.
Where to Shop
It’s easy to get carried away with ideas when looking through home magazines, but if you are on a budget it may be best to steer clear of the boutique bazaars. The big box stores have an advantage when it comes to buying power and often have additional deals. Bed, Bath & Beyond is one example of a store where you can find exceptional quality home goods for a price that won’t affect your retirement fund. A Bed, Bath & Beyond coupon code can help you take advantage of their rotating sales lineup, which changes from week to week and includes everything from coffee makers to bed linens. Not to mention, you know you have a stack of their coupons at home. Do they ever stop mailing these?
Bed, Bath & Beyond doesn’t sell much furniture, however, so you’ll have to look elsewhere for the big stuff. The Simple Dollar suggests IKEA, Target, and even Big Lots. Don’t count out yard sales and thrift stores either. Most communities have at least one secondhand store with low-priced merchandise. As an added benefit, buying used means it’s already assembled, which will save you and your partner the headache of translating an instruction manual.
Do it Together
You may each have ideas on how you want your space to look. But, you have a long life ahead of you and this is a perfect exercise in cooperation, budgeting, and compromise. Decorating your home as a couple requires a lot of give and take. If you like light colors, and your partner prefers darker ones, you’ll have to strike a balance. Buying multi-purpose pieces, such as a reversible comforter or throw pillows with changeable covers, will help you each get what you want at least some of the time, and you won’t have the expenses of buying multiple items to change out from season to season.
When it comes time to add art to your interior, keep it simple. Stick with pictures of the two of you and of the things you’ve done together. A simple photo montage of your relationship, starting from your first date up until the day you purchased your home, is a cost-effective and sentimental way to outfit your new digs. For art that pulls double duty, grab a paintbrush and get creative together. Companies like Painting with a Twist offer opportunities for you to unleash your inner Picasso, enjoy a date tonight together, and bring home artwork you can be proud of. You only pay for the materials you use and you can usually bring along a few snacks and drinks to make the evening more enjoyable (and economical).
Combining households is a big deal. And it can also be a big expense. If your budget isn’t as impressive as your love, you’ll have to make do with what you can afford. Fortunately, keeping an eye out for second-hand deals and visiting stores such as IKEA and Target make it possible and you won’t have to sacrifice style or selection. Good luck decorating!