Contractors Say These Simple, Cheap Tricks Make Your Home Look Way More Impressive

Take it from the pros.

Contractors Say These Simple, Cheap Tricks Make Your Home Look Way More Impressive
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When it comes to upgrading their homes, seasoned contractors know how to make big impact on a small budget. As a result, they understand that wallet-friendly fixes can make a huge difference, so you can enjoy a tidy, upgraded home now.

To source some of the simplest, cheapest tricks for creating a more impressive space, we got in touch with professional cleaners, organizers, decorators, and more. The consensus? Oftentimes, more space, lower utilities, and a home that feels cozy and high-end are just a few affordable Amazon products away.


These Easy-To-Install Adhesive Hooks That Take Advantage Of Dead Space

Nicole Gabai, professional organizer, a Golden Circle member of NAPO (National Association of Productivity & Organizing Professionals), and the author of the bestseller The Art of Organizing: An Artful Guide to an Organized Life, recommends these adhesive hooks. They “help you take advantage of what could otherwise be dead space” by giving you a spot to “hang your hats, jewelry, bags,” and more. Since they stick to most surfaces, they install tool-free.

  • Available styles: 12


Some Expandable Drawer Dividers That Keep Your Clothes Neat

Gabai also recommends these OXO drawer dividers, which expand to fit drawers from 11 to 17 inches long. They set up tool-free thanks to the tension lever, resist scratching your furniture due to their foam pads, and help you create designated compartments for your clothes — which is especially helpful if you use the Marie Kondo folding method.


Some Bookends That Double As Sweater Stackers

Yes, they’re technically bookends — but according to Gabai, they’re also “great for containing stacks of sweaters or t-shirts on a shelf” because they keep “the stack from tipping over." Each one is made from a single piece of sturdy metal with non-slip pads on the base.


These Genius Shoe Stackers That Double Your Storage Space

Running low on storage space in your closet or entryway organizer? These shoe slot organizers “help you take advantage of vertical space” by stacking pairs on top of each other, virtually doubling your storage, according to Gabai. They can be adjusted from 2.7 inches to 7.2 inches to fit most types of shoes, from flats and slippers to heels and low-collar boots.

  • Available styles: 2


An Inexpensive Mirror To Add Depth

Lisa Simonsen, a real estate agent with Douglas Elliman who has appeared on Kendra Sells Hollywood, wrote that “mirrors, especially large ones, add depth,” and they don’t have to be expensive, either: “You can buy [them] anywhere, like Target, Amazon, Walmart, or Home Depot.” This gold circle mirror comes in diameters up to 15.7 inches. Despite its low price tag, it has a gold-tone hanging chain, a velvet-lined back, and a sleek, modern style.

  • Available sizes: 9.8 inches — 15.7 inch


Or This Bold, Trendy Option With A Rippled Frame

Sold in two different colors (pink and white), this wavy rectangular mirror doubles as a bold piece of art due to its unique ripple-style frame. “I love this mirror!” raved one reviewer. “It's very, very light, so easy to hang and work with. The ruffled curvy edges are so cute!”

  • Available styles: 2


This Cult-Favorite Wood Cleaner Oil That Revives Old Furniture

“A black magic marker and Murphy oil for dark furniture can turn something scratched into something looking brand new,” wrote Simonsen. First, use a marker to fill in any holes, and then clean and condition the wood with this 99%-natural oil formula, which you can apply with a cloth. “Keeps my wood floors and furniture looking clean and shiny,” one reviewer wrote. “Smells wonderful also!”


And This Wood Marker Repair Kit That’s A “Miracle Worker”

For wood of all different colors, this furniture repair kit comes with six markers and six crayons in several common wood colors. You can use them to cover scuffs and fill in dents on your furniture, floors, or any other wooden items. “Miracle worker! When we moved house, the movers took a huge gouge out of an antique cherry wood mirror,” one reviewer wrote. “I was distraught but using a combo of the filler and pens in this kit, you would never know! I kind of can't believe it.”


These Velvet Hangers That Give Your Closet A Polished Look

Raychel Klein, CEO and founder of RayBayBay Home Organization, Seattle-based professional organizer, and certified KonMari consultant, recommends these velvet hangers. They resist slipping, have a slim profile to save space, and come in a pack of 60 so you can “swap out all those mismatched hangers for uniform or same-color hangers. This will create a consistent look in your closet while also preventing any tangling or odd spacing,” Klein wrote.

  • Available styles: 16


A Tidying Basket, Which Could Change Your Cleaning Routine Forever

Aaron Christensen, resident cleaning expert and VP of Growth at Homeaglow, wrote, “My number one hack for a tidy home is a tidying basket,” which will “save you hours of back and forwards” while you’re cleaning. According to Christensen, you “start in one room” and “put everything that belongs in a different room in the basket, like toys, books, clothing, or whatever. Head to the next room, deposit everything from the basket that belongs in this room, and then pick up everything that doesn’t belong. Rinse and repeat until you’ve tidied your entire home.” Christensen recommends this rope caddy because it’s “roomy and has multiple compartments so that you can easily sort items as you pick them up.”

  • Available styles: 2


An Over-The-Sink Cutting Board For A DIY Workstation Sink

"People are finding that they don’t need more space per se but need better solutions and better organization,” wrote Maris Park Borris, Delta Faucet industrial designer. “Workstation sinks are a great example of this for the kitchen — they provide multifunctional tools in a small footprint (or a footprint that is already available).” If a workstation sink isn’t in the budget right now, create your own with this over-the-sink cutting board. The bamboo surface is durable and knife-friendly, while the elongated design maximizes counter space and lets you brush debris or liquid straight down the garbage disposal or drain.


Or This Roll-Up Drying Rack That Fits Over Most Sinks

“Workstation sinks are great because they can adapt and evolve for occasions and lifestyles whether you’re washing your pet, child, entertaining, or even trying out a new recipe,” Park Borris wrote — and they often come with built-in dish drains, too. This roll-up drying rack creates the same effect for standard sinks since its 17.5-inch length stretches over most designs and its silicone edges grip the countertop. It then supports your pots, pans, and dishes while excess moisture drips directly into the sink below.

  • Available sizes: 17.5” x 10.2” — 20.5” x 15.5”


This Leather Cover That Instantly Elevates Your Tissue Boxes

While tissue boxes are so common you might not give them a second thought, Park Borris wrote that the prints and text on them are often an eyesore. An elegant solution? “I ordered leather sleeves for a standard size tissue box for every room in my house,” Park Borris wrote. This one is made from faux leather and comes in your choice of 12 colors, most for under $10. The Velcro closure underneath keeps the box in place while the foldable design allows for easy storage when not in use.

  • Available styles: 13


A Cozy, Delicious-Smelling Candle That Engages Multiple Senses

"Visual upgrades can help a space feel cozy, especially in fall, but so can elements that utilize other senses,” wrote Sarah Blevins, design specialist at Villa. “For a quick and cost-effective upgrade, add a few scented candles in your space. I particularly love fall scents such as cinnamon, vanilla, and cookies." This Sweet Water Decor cinnamon rolls candle combines all of the aforementioned scents into one candle that reviewers describe as “delicious” and “amazing.” The soy wax burns for over 40 hours in its amber jar.

  • Available styles: 8


These Flickering Flameless Candles That Safely Set The Mood

"If you are like me and have cats who enjoy knocking things over, or have small children in your home, these Amazon flickering flameless candles are an easy, affordable, and safe way to make your space look immediately more welcoming,” Blevins wrote. They’re made from frosted plastic and have dual flickering modes to imitate real candlelight. The included remote control, automatic timer pre-sets, and battery-operated designs (which lasts up to 500 hours when using high-grade batteries) make your life easier as well as safer.


This Warming Lamp So You Can Smell Your Candles Even Without Lighting Them

"I also love this candle warmer, which allows for scent distribution throughout a space without the use of an open flame,” Blevins wrote. Just plug it in and set your candle on the metal base. The included bulbs in the tulip-shaped shade then heat up to melt the wax without having to light the candle. This lamp also has automatic timers and a dimmer so you can adjust the intensity as needed.

  • Available styles: 3


These Furniture Sliders That Help You Clean Under Couches, Tables & Appliances

According to Nick Valentino, VP of market operations of Bellhop, "Sliding pads for moving furniture aren't just useful when you're moving to a new house. They're also an essential tool for keeping your home clean. [...] They enable a person to easily clean under a couch, table, or even the refrigerator without having a helper around. I can pop four of these on my couch and have it across the room in less than a minute.” Valentino is “partial to the MagicSliders brand,” which has peel-and-stick adhesive backing and can be used on carpet, wood, and tile.


Some Weather Stripping To Improve Insulation & Save On Utilities

According to Courtney Klosterman, home insights expert at Hippo, only 23% of homeowners regularly replace the weather stripping on their doors and windows — but “removing and replacing worn out weather strips each season helps improve insulation and may even help better manage your utility bills.” This peel-and-stick weather stripping roll uses a powerful but residue-resistant adhesive and closed-cell foam that keeps heat inside in the winter and prevents air conditioning from escaping in the summer.

  • Available sizes: 1 in x 1/2 in x 20 ft — 4 in x 1/4 in x 10 ft


Or This Rubber Weather Stripping For Large Gaps

Similarly, this rubber weather stripping is made from a thick, flexible material that fills large gaps and compresses to create a tight seal. This not only better preserves the temperature inside your house, but also insulates against noise and dust. Each roll contains 40 feet of stripping and comes in your choice of black or white.

  • Available styles: 2
  • Available sizes: 20 ft — 40 ft


A Lazy Susan To Improve Accessibility In Cabinets Or On Countertops

"Lazy Susans in cabinets or on countertops improve accessibility to items stored in the back, reducing clutter,” wrote James King, operations manager at DeluxeMaid. This two-tier lazy Susan is made from brushed stainless steel, which makes it both stylish and durable. It also has a non-slip base and raised rims to keep both the rack and its contents in place despite the smooth 360-degree rotation.


These Under-Cabinet Wine Glass Racks That Free Up Shelf Space

Running out of space inside your cabinets? "Stemware racks hang under cabinets, organizing wine glasses while freeing up cabinet space,” wrote James King. These wine glass racks are made from steel, install with two screws each, and fit underneath most cabinets and shelves. They also give your home bar a professional, polished appearance and reduce dust.


A Shaggy Bath Mat To Make Your Bathroom Extra Cozy

According to King, shaggy bathmats are an easy but worthwhile upgrade since they “offer comfort and a soft landing spot in the bathroom." This plush bath mat is softer and more supportive than most granted it combines shaggy, absorbent microfiber with a 1-inch layer of memory foam. It’s also machine-washable and can be tumble-dried on low.


These Over-The-Door Shoe Racks That Store More Than Shoes

Gabai recommends these over-the-door shoe racks and notes that they’re “great for more than just shoes.” The 28 mesh pockets also effectively store toiletries, makeup, toys, clothing, and hair tools — or you can use them in the pantry to store and display snacks. The metal hanging hooks fit most standard-size doors without the need for drilling.

  • Available styles: 3


This Rotating Makeup Organizer That Makes Use Of Vertical Space

Because it’s “pretty and helps you take advantage of vertical space,” this rotating makeup organizer is “great for things that are in your Zone 1 (things you need to access easily every day),” wrote Gabai. Its middle shelves are adjustable so you can create custom-like storage for your tallest jars and smallest nail polish bottles — and the transparent acrylic and spinning design allow you to see and access your entire collection at a glance.


A Touch-Up Roller For Mess-Free Paint Repairs

Elizabeth Vergara, founder and lead designer of Vergara Homes, recommends investing in “touch-up paint rollers on Amazon” because “they are easy to use and a cost-effective solution for minor paint damages,” all with minimal prep and mess. This touch-up painter has a 1-inch roller to cover scuffs and marks, and its built-in reservoir ensures that your home’s most-used paint colors are always ready to go.


These Magic Erasers That Restore Walls, Furniture & More

"I always use the Mr. Clean magic eraser to clean the surface before I roll the paint over the marks,” Vergara wrote — but this best-selling cleaning pad is excellent for all kinds of jobs around the house. I use them to remove baked-on messes on the stovetop, scum in the tub, rust on my cookware, and scuffs on my furniture. Best of all, its melamine-foam construction works with water alone.


A Digital, Compact Way To Display Your Most Treasured Memories

"Any personal mementos from travel and family are my most treasured and unique items,” wrote Park Borris, and these personal items make for heartfelt, one-of-a-kind decor. A smart digital photo frame lets you display all of your family’s most treasured memories in one frame, minimizing clutter on your shelves. This one connects to your phone and syncs with Alexa or Google Home so you can easily upload new pictures and control your frame with your voice.

  • Available sizes: 8 Inch — 10 Inch


Or These Elegant Frames That Look More Expensive Than They Are

When decorating your home with personal mementos, Park Borris recommends “sticking to the classics,” and these timeless mini frames dress up your favorite tiny photographs with their textured gold metal. “Beautiful and sturdy,” wrote one reviewer who was surprised at the quality given the affordable price tag.


A Wall-Mounted Drying Rack That Folds Flat When Not In Use

According to King, a wall-mounted drying rack “can be collapsed when not in use,” saving space in your bedroom or laundry area. This one is made from wood with a white finish, so it goes with most decor — and even though its seven-rung rack expands to a 20-degree angle for plenty of drying space, it lays flat against the wall when it’s not in use.


This Best-Selling Tiered Spice Rack With Countless Uses

“Tiered spice racks provide clear visibility and accessibility to spices while saving cabinet space,” wrote King, and this tiered spice rack provides three deep shelves with non-skid lining to keep your bottles in place. It comes in two sizes and several color options, so you can personalize your spice cabinet — though reviewers also use it to organize canned goods, art supplies, action figures, perfume, or toiletries.

  • Available sizes: 10-inch — 15-inch
  • Available styles: 13


An Easy-To-Install Kit For A Slide-Out Trash Bin

According to King, “slide-out bins in the kitchen or under the sink keep trash and recycling hidden while maximizing floor space." This roll-out trash can kit is made from stainless steel with a smooth-rolling ball bearing system and adjusts to fit most trash cans from 7 to 11 gallons (not included). “Super easy to install,” wrote one reviewer who said the whole process “took less than 10 minutes.”


A TV Mount To Save Space & Create A More Comfortable Viewing Experience

“Wall-mounted TVs save space and create a comfortable viewing [experience],” wrote King. I’ve had this wall-mounted TV bracket in my bedroom for the last three years, and I love it. It fit my old television as well as my upgraded one, granted it’s compatible with most screens from 13 to 42 inches and can support up to 44 pounds. I also love that it swivels, tilts, and retracts.


This Brilliant Hack To Create Your Own Molding

If you’re looking for a small, affordable way to bring more luxury to a space, Vergara recommends “adding crown molding to a room for a more sophisticated aesthetic.” Traditionally, molding is made from wood and requires sawing, nailing, and painting — but this peel-and-stick molding is made from flexible, cuttable PVC and has a water-resistant self-adhesive strip on the back. In other words, DIY wainscoting has never been easier.

  • Available sizes: 9.8ft x 1.6in — 9.8ft x 2x4in


A Smart Thermostat For A Great Price

Another one of Vergara’s favorite hacks to upgrade your home: “Converting your home systems to smart home devices — trust me, once you don’t have to get up to change the thermostat on a cold winter day you’ll thank me." This certified-refurbished thermostat from Amazon cuts costs with a device that’s tested and certified to look and work like new, plus it comes with the same limited warranty as a new one. It lets you control your HVAC system with your phone or your voice, and since the Alexa app guides you through the setup process, it’s easy enough to do it yourself.


A Best-Selling Gutter Scoop That’s “An Affordable Lifesaver”

According to Klosterman, only 38% of homeowners clean out their gutters regularly — but doing so every three months “helps reduce the risk of water damage, leaks, and structural issues.” If you feel comfortable using a ladder, this best-selling $4 product (called the Getter Gutter Scoop) has a long, flexible tongue to reach into the gutter, a narrow heel to pull it out, and a long handle to protect your hands. One reviewer called it “an affordable lifesaver.”


This Chunky-Knit Blanket That Boosts The Coziness Of A Space

According to Park Borris, we look to texture to decide how we should feel about a space, “so adding softness with a chunky knit blanket [...] can turn up the cozy feeling.” They don’t have to be expensive, either; this knitted throw has a soft bubbled texture and classic tassels on two ends — plus it comes in over a dozen color options, all for under $30.

  • Available sizes: 50x60” — 60x80”
  • Available styles: 18


Or A Round Accent To Bring Warmth & Style To A Room

“Have you noticed how many homes have archways in their doors as opposed to squared-off separation? Bringing in soft-scaping furnishings is a great and easy way to bring comfort to your space,” Park Borris wrote, and that includes a “rounded-off table.” This small side table has a simple mid-century modern design thanks to its three tapered legs, but it still brings warmth to a room with its round shape and woodgrain finish.

  • Available styles: 2


Some Tile Touches With An Artisan Feel

When you opt for artisan touches (like handmade tiles instead of ones that are manufactured to perfection), it “can also easily dial up [the] comfort” of a space, wrote Park Borris. Maybe you don’t have the budget to install an all-new backsplash, but these tumbled stone coasters create the same effect for much less. The gorgeous surface is painted with shades of blue, but it still absorbs condensation from your drinks, plus the back has a cork lining to prevent scratches and slips.


This Easy, Affordable Cube Shelf To Create New Storage

“One of the problems many of my clients have is they don't have enough available storage space, and storage cubes help solve this issue,” wrote Aaron Traub, owner and lead organizer of My Professional Organizer Dallas. “They're relatively affordable and work well in any space, but many clients use them in toy rooms, kid's rooms, large closets, bedrooms, and more!" This ClosetMaid Cubeicals shelf organizer comes in eight colors and multiple configurations, from two to 12 cubes. They’re compatible with most standard 11-inch cube bins.

  • Available sizes: 2-Cube — 12-Cube
  • Available styles: 8


And Some Fabric Bins To Go Along With It

Rather than using shelves alone, Traub loves fabric storage bins “because they hide the items inside and present a clean and orderly look.” These 11-inch storage cubes fit the above shelving unit and have two handles for easy retrieval. They’re also made from a non-woven, rigid fabric that comes in seven color options and can support up to 11 pounds — but the frame still folds up when not in use.

  • Available sizes: S — L
  • Available styles: 7