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40 Mistakes You're Making Around The House That You Didn't Realize Are So Cheap & Easy To Fix

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As an avid DIYer, I have a tendency to see a small project and want to make it into a big one… but that’s not always in the budget. So I’ve found cheap solutions that allow me to update my home (as frequently) as I want without breaking the bank. Take it from me: explore your options before you call a professional. You just might save some money and learn a new skill. Check out these 40 mistakes you’re making around the house that you didn’t realize are so cheap and easy to fix.

Wear and tear happen to every home. From cracked tile and worn leather to outdated countertops and low-efficiency appliances, these fixes can add up. But not all repairs are as costly as you might think. Amazon is home to many affordable kits that allow you to fix small damage for a fraction of what a professional will charge you. You can revitalize your home with just a few of the budget hacks you’ll find on this list.

There’s nothing fun about spending money on preventative measures, but trust me, you’ll be glad you did. From a seal for your bathroom shower and an easy DIY repair kit for holes in your walls to a drain clog remover that will keep the plumber bills off your next credit card bill, you’ll find plenty of low-cost solutions that can stop small issues in their tracks.

Each of these products has been highly rated and reviewed by homeowners and renters. Upgrade your home today with these small, budget-friendly solutions.

1

Mistake: Not Protecting Your Mattress From Spills And Stains

Solution: A Waterproof Bamboo Mattress Protector

Odds are your mattress is not getting cleaned as often as it should, but this mattress protector can miraculously keep it looking brand new. It’s made of premium bamboo and fits on your mattress just like a fitted sheet, which makes it easy to remove for washing. It’s waterproof to protect against urine, fluids, sweat, and mites. It’s breathable and has a deep pocket to fit mattresses up to 18-inches deep.

2

Mistake: Not Protecting Your Appliances

Solution: This Cheap Pack Of Stove Burner Covers

Spend just $11 now to protect your stove burners instead of paying to replace them later. These stove burner covers will eliminate the need to scrub your stovetop and get into those hard-to-reach burners. They can be cut to fit around your burner and act as a shield, catching any debris or grease. They’re completely washable — you can even toss them in the dishwasher and reuse them.

3

Mistake: Letting Fruits Go Bad Before You Eat Them

Solution: These Fridge Liners Make Produce Last Longer

Storing your fresh produce in the plastic bags you brought them home in is the quickest way to make it go bad. Your grocery bill will benefit from these fridge liners that you can cut to size and place in fruit and veggie drawers to extend the life of your produce. The foam liners allow air to circulate, which keeps produce crisper for much longer. The set comes with four liners for only $12.

4

Mistake: Scratching Your Floor Every Time You Move A Chair

Solution: These Transparent Silicone Chair Leg Covers

Don’t let your furniture damage your floors. Opt for these silicone chair leg covers that protect both your chairs and floors without ruining your aesthetic. The clear covers slip on over your chair legs and have a felt bottom that makes it easy to slide across floors without worrying about scratching. This pack includes 16 covers and is available in several colors.

5

Mistake: Letting Small Leaks Grow

Solution: A Door Seal That Prevents Water Damage

Small leaks can lead to big damage, but these low-priced shower door seals are the preventative measure you’ll never regret. The clear vinyl fits 36-inch frameless shower doors without an adhesive. It’s designed to be cut to fit your exact shower specifications. The $29 price tag is a small cost upfront to avoid costly future repairs.

6

Mistake: Spending Money On Disposable Paper Towels

Solution: These $6 Reusable Bamboo Towels

Stop throwing paper towels away and spending a small fortune on paper goods — this pack of reusable sheets of bamboo paper towels is better for the environment, your wallet, and it will last you up to six months. The sheets can be washed and reused up to 100 times. They're made of sustainable bamboo material that is absorbent, tough, and conveniently machine washable.

7

Mistake: Tripping Over Rug Corners

Solution: A Double-Sided Tape That’s Residue-Free

This budget-friendly carpet tape keeps your rugs in place so you can avoid tripping and damaging your expensive rug. This heavy-duty tape is double-sided to grip rough or smooth surfaces without damaging them. Use it on tile, vinyl, concrete, wood, cement, and any outdoor surfaces, without worrying about it leaving residue behind. It’s only $10 and comes with 25 yards of tape.

8

Mistake: Not Cleaning Out Dryer Vents

Solution: A Vent Dryer Kit That Improves Efficiency

Keep your dryer at peak efficiency with this dryer vent cleaning kit that includes a hose attachment for your vacuum that’s designed to clean vents. The 33-inch hose attaches to move vacuums and is flexible to reach between appliances, but works especially well in your dryer vent. Not only will cleaning the lint out of your dyer help dry your clothes faster, but it can help prevent a serious fire hazard.

9

Mistake: Slowly Wearing Down Your Cabinets By Banging Them Shut

Solution: These Cabinet Bumpers That Prevent Damage

If every time you reach inside a kitchen cabinet to grab a cup, you accidentally slam that door shut, those slams are going to add up to chipped cabinets that are costly to fix and replace. But these simple $10 cabinet bumpers adhere to cabinet doors so that each slam lands softly, protecting its wood finish. The translucent button-shaped bumpers come in a pack of 200.

10

Mistake: Replacing Costly Wood Furniture Before Fixing It

Solution: A Pack Of Wood Markers In A Variety Of Colors

No matter how careful you are, nicks and scratches on wood furniture and floors happen. These wood repair markers will restore your wood pieces to their former glory for less than you think. This set comes with six markers and six wax crayons, as well as a sharpener, so you can effortlessly fill in holes and imperfections on wood. The pack features six colors, ranging from maple to black.

11

Mistake: Allowing A Rattling Headboard To Damage Walls

Solution: This $12 Headboard Stabilizer

Not only does a moving bed disrupt your sleep, but its movement can slam into the wall behind it, which means you’ll eventually have to spend money to repair chipping paint. Here’s a $12 solution: anti-shake headboard tools that attach to your bed frame with an adhesive that keeps it in place and provides an EVA cushion barrier to protect walls. These smart tools, which have more than 5,000 reviews, are adjustable and simple to install, according to reviewers.

12

Mistake: Using Papertowels

Solution: These Swedish Dishcloths That Are Sturdy And Machine Washable

Not only are these Swedish dishcloths more effective than ordinary paper towels at absorbing dust and dirt on cleaning days, but they are so much more eco-friendly and cost-effective in the long run. A pack of six cloths costs just $14 and absorbs 20 times more liquid than its weight, so one cloth will last you a long time. They’re made from sustainable materials like cotton and cellulose wood pump (which makes them ultra durable) and are free of plastic. They come in 10 colors and packs of six or 10.

13

Mistake: Letting Avocado Halves Go Bad

Solution: These Stretch Pods That Keep Them Fresh

These clever and effective avocado stretch pods keep avocados fresher, for longer — even after they’ve been cut. The food huggers are shaped to perfectly fit an avocado. Not only will these save you grocery money, but they also reduce the amount of plastic or aluminum wrap you have to use — perfect for both the environment and your wallet.

14

Mistake: Not Properly Protecting Your Valuables

Solution: This Water and Fire-Proof Bag

No one expects to find themselves in an emergency, but it’s better to be prepared. Keep your irreplaceable belongings, paperwork, or expensive items safe in this fireproof bag. This one features a high-quality zipper, water-resistant velcro closure, adjustable shoulder strap, and large storage space for folders, contracts, or photos. In addition to protection in the event of a fire, the bag is also waterproof for flood protection.

15

Mistake: Thinking You Need To Spend Thousands To Upgrade Counters

Solution: This $7 Peel-And-Stick Wallpaper That Looks Like Marble

If you’d love to give your countertops an upgrade but have a tight budget, try this glossy peel-and-stick paper that looks like real marble. You can use it on so many surfaces like cabinets, backsplashes, and tables. The vinyl paper comes in four sizes and is a cinch to wipe clean. And if you get tired of the design and want to swap it out, it comes right off without ruining surfaces.

16

Mistake: Your Feet Hurt While Cooking

Solution: A Comfortable Ant-Fatigue Kitchen Mat

If you’re on your feet all day, you’ll appreciate having this $25 anti-fatigue mat supporting you as you cook or wash dishes. The mat is made of super thick PVC to relieve back pain and take pressure off your knees. It’s waterproof and can be cleaned by simply rinsing it with water. The non-slip texture keeps the mat in place and it’s an affordable pick.

17

Mistake: Letting Unfiltered Light Cost You

Solution: These Cheap Pleated Shades That Block Light

I love natural light, but intense sunlight can cost you. For one, UV rays can fade your furniture over time, leading to having to replace those pieces. Cooling your space can also get expensive. Instead of buying new furniture or increasing your energy bills, filter out UV light and gain a bit more privacy in rooms by installing these affordable blackout pleated shades. The shades come in two sizes and can be installed without a single tool — you won’t even need a cord to lift them up and pull them down (something you can simply do manually). They have more than 87,000 reviews and come in a pack of six.

18

Mistake: Paying To Replace Damaged Leather

Solution: An Affordable Leather Repair Kit

Leather looks high-end and expensive until it doesn’t. A damaged leather couch or vinyl piece can be an eyesore, but no need to replace the entire couch. This leather and vinyl repair kit come with a variety of compounds in different colors that you mix together (all of the tools you need are included) to create a perfect complimentary piece of backing fabric that you’ll then apply to worn-out spots on your furniture to give them a little love and attention. It’s only $20 and has earned more than 6,000 reviews.

19

Mistake: Allowing Drafts To Drive Electric Prices Up

Solution: A Door Draft Stopper That’s Less Than $20

This door draft stopper is an Amazon bestseller with more than 23,000 reviews. It’s easy to install, plus it can cut down on energy costs by keeping warm air in and cold air out. It slides under the door to create a barrier that blocks airflow, noise, critters, moisture, and even light.

20

Mistake: Letting Your Cat Scratch Your Furniture

Solution: These Transparent Scratch Shields

Keep your cat happy while protecting your couch from expensive repairs with these cat scratch deterrent shields. They can be cut to size to fit the sides of your furniture and they stay in place with a peel-off adhesive that sticks to the furniture. The protectors are clear, so they won’t ruin your aesthetic, and they’ll gently persuade your cat to move their scratching needs over to a scratching post. The $27 investment is worth it to protect your expensive couch.

21

Mistake: You’re Paying Too Much For Extended Wifi Coverage

Solution: A Wifi Extender That Extends Your WFH Space

If you work from home, your internet connection is your lifeline. You don’t need to bust the budget by upgrading your Internet service just yet. Instead, invest in this $39 Wi-Fi range extender and automatically benefit from a strong connection that covers up to 1000 square feet and 15 devices. It has the backing of more than 69,000 reviews, including one that noted, “I highly recommend it if you just need a boost in signal to reach certain devices or reach devices that are too far away from your router.”

22

Mistake: Thinking A Few Chipped Tiles Need To Be Demo-ed

Solution: This $30 Tile Repair Kit

Floors chip sometimes — but there’s no need to replace tile just yet. Make a fast, inexpensive repair with this tile repair kit that works on stone, ceramic, and marble surfaces. The kit includes different colored putty options to get the right match and will easily conceal flaws on floors as well as tubs and shower stalls. The best part: it costs less than $30 and will make your home look brand new.

23

Mistake: Hiring Expensive Professional Cleaners

Solution: A Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaning Mop

Sure, professional cleaners can get your home in tip-top shape, but if an entire cleaning team is not within your budget, this multi-tasking steam mop cleaner will save the day. It can deep clean everything — from floors and carpets to areas you usually forget like windows, mirrors, upholstery, and drapes. It has more than 31,000 reviews and is considered an Amazon #1 bestseller.

24

Mistake: Assuming Custom Lighting Has To Be Pricey

Solution: These Motion-Sensored LED Lights That Adhere To Anything

If you love the convenience of custom lighting but have a strict budget, check out these motion-sensor LED lights. They are USB-powered and narrow enough to fit in small spaces like hallways, closets, and cabinets. Each light bar features three modes: continuously on, motion-sensing on, or off. One reviewer noted, “I like that I can put these anywhere I like and then easily take it off so [I] can recharge them. [...]“

25

Mistake: Assuming All Bathroom Upgrades Are Expensive

Solution: A High-Pressure Showerhead With A Filter

You may think that luxury spa-like showerheads cost a fortune, but this one costs less than $40 and is loved by reviewers. The high-pressure showerhead features a filter that softens water, reduces acidity, and helps remove odors and discoloration. The 16-stage filter also eliminates heavy metals, THM, chlorine, and other sediments.

26

Mistake: Assuming Minor Repairs Need To Be Done By Professionals

Solution: A DIY Hole Repair Kit For $12

You don’t have to be a general contractor to mend minor damage in your own home. This hole repair compound fills in holes in just minutes and replaces vinyl spackling. It won’t shrink, crack, or sag and doubles as a primer, so once it’s dry, all you need to do is add a touch-up of paint. No one will be to the wiser. This DIY hack is an effortless solution, even for novices.

27

Mistake: Leaving Lights On When You’re Not Using Them

Solution: A Motion-Activated Light To Save Money

Turn any ordinary light bulb into a motion sensor light that only switches on when you’re in the room (and saves you a ton of money). The socket has an adjustable auto-on/off control and detects movement within 12 feet by sensing your body temperature. Instead of leaving lights on all day and night, and wasting a won of money, this socket will get your electrical spending under control.

28

Mistake: Hanging Clothing On Plastic Hangers That Ruin Their Shape

Solution: These Extra-Wide Wooden Hangers

When it comes to the higher-end pieces in your closet, don’t store them like T-shirts. Swap out those plastic hangers for these luxury wooden hangers. Unlike cheaper options, these hold their shape and therefore keep your clothes in better shape. This six-pack features hangers with extra-wide shoulders for securing suits and jackets, as well as a velvet bar for hanging pants.

29

Mistake: Tossing All Your Utensils In A Drawer

Solution: An Expandable Bamboo Drawer Organizer

Half of my “cooking” time is really just me fumbling through my drawers looking for the right utensil. This bamboo drawer organizer is a simple and cheap alternative. Plus it’s expandable to fit your drawer size. The beautiful bamboo is water-resistant and easy to clean. It comes with seven to nine compartments, depending on how much it’s expanded. It has smaller chambers for cutlery, as well as larger compartments for spatulas, tongs, and slotted spoons.

30

Mistake: Using Disposable Baking Sheets

Solution: These Reusable Silicone Baking Mats

Skip the disposable food wraps like aluminum foil or wax paper and switch to these silicone baking mats. The nonstick sheets are washable and reusable, plus they can withstand temperatures from -40 degrees to 480 degrees Fahrenheit. They’re flexible but tear-resistant and provide a non-toxic solution that will save you money.

31

Mistake: Giving Up On Pet-Stained Decor

Solution: This Enzyme-Powered Cleaner

This pet odor remover has earned more than 12,000 reviews for saving so many reviewers’ furniture and carpets. It’s made with enzymes and natural ingredients that target odors and stains and destroy any messes. Use it on carpet, hardwood floors, tile, litter boxes, pillows, kennels, and more. One rave review noted, “All I can say is that I’ve used all sorts of cleaners and machines for carpet/rugs, and this is the first thing I’ve used that works. I literally put my nose in the carpet [afterward] and can’t smell urine or other bad odors.”

32

Mistake: Tossing Out Home Goods With Stains

Solution: An Oxy-Powered Stain Cleaner

Say goodbye to stubborn stains with this crowd-favorite cleaner with a low price tag. It permanently removes stains from pet accidents, blood, and even red wine, reviving your floors, furniture, clothing, and more. The activated oxygen formula works quickly, and at this price, you’ll want to buy a few bottles to keep on hand.

33

Mistake: Wasting Money On Fresh Herbs That Go Bad

Solution: An Easy-To-Use Herb Garden Kit To Grow Your Own

Even if you’re a gardening novice, you’ll love this herb garden kit set. It comes with everything you need and makes growing herbs so easy. The set includes four herb pots and drip trays, peat pellets, kelp nutrition, markers, and, of course, a variety of seed packets including cilantro, basil, and parsley. Keep them by your window and watch the fruits of your labor grow — while saving money on produce at the grocery store.

34

Mistake: Running Out Of Storage Space

Solution: This Budget Pack Of Floating Shelves

If you’re running low on storage, optimize your wall space with these floating shelves. This two-pack comes with two medium-density fibreboard wood shelves covered in a white laminate, as well as metal brackets to keep them perfectly afixed. Use these to display photos, flowers, books, and family memorabilia.

35

Mistake: Using Shelf Space To Store Plants

Solution: A Budget-Friendly Plant Stand

This mid-century modern plant stand is stylish and shockingly affordable. For just $25, get this designer-inspired stand that will hold planters up to 8-inches in diameter. It comes disassembled but is a breeze to put together. One five-star review noted, “These planter stands were exactly what I was looking for. They were exceptionally easy to assemble and are extremely sturdy. Also hard to beat the price.”

36

Mistake: Living In Uncomfortably Dry Conditions

Solution: A Nearly Silent Humidifier

Running a humidifier in your home will keep the air moist — allowing you to have a more restful sleep, moisturized skin, and easier breathing. The 6-liter water tank features a silent nozzle so the mist will disperse throughout the room without a sound. It’s filterless and even has a tray for adding essential oils.

37

Mistake: Turning Up The Heat Whenever You’re Chilly

Solution: This Faux Fur Blanket To Snuggle Up Under

Just a few clever swaps can save you money. Not only is this faux fur blanket a luxurious and high-end accessory for any room, but it’s super warm to keep you snuggly on chilly nights. The thick, shag sherpa blanket is soft and warm for snuggling under, or for just making a space look lived in, yet stylish. It comes in eight colors.

38

Mistake: Storing Leftovers Improperly And Letting Them Go Bad

Solution: These Glass Containers With Bamboo Lids

Keep your leftovers fresher longer with these glass food containers. They have bamboo lids that are grooved so they stack easily. This four-pack is made with BPA-free borosilicate glass that is resistant to cold and heat and eco-friendly. It’s safe to put these containers in the dishwasher, microwave, and freezer.

39

Mistake: Using Old-School Lightbulbs That Fail To Add To Your Decor

Solution: A Remote-Controlled Lightbulb With 16 Colors

These may look like ordinary lightbulbs, but these smart light bulbs are controlled with a remote so you can customize the lighting in your home to make it look its best. And don’t worry, one bulb costs only $8. Choose from 16 colors and even set the lights to fade, flash, strobe, and stay smooth. These 3W lightbulbs fit into any standard E27 or E26 screw base.

40

Mistake: Not Cleaning Out Pipes And Needing A Plumber

Solution: A Popular Liquid Drain Clog Remover

No need to throw money away on subpar drain cleaners or plumber bills when there’s an effective drain clog dissolver for less than $25. It removes debris like hair from the drain, plus the biodegradable formula is safe to use in tubs, sinks, and toilets (it’s septic-safe). This two-pack clears drains and dissolves hair, toilet paper, wipes, and soap scum. One five-star review noted, “ This product ate through all the hair and scum that was clogging the drain.”