15 Small-Scale Renos to Refresh Your Home in a Weekend

A large living room with white built-in bookshelves.

The Spruce / Christopher Lee Foto

With a new year comes the familiar urge to give ourselves and our spaces a bit of a refresh. That being said, as much as we’d all love to totally transform our homes it’s not always easy to find the resources to allocate to such a big project—especially right after the holiday season.

If you’re itching to give your space a makeover but don’t have the time (or funds) to dedicate to a big renovation, we’ve got you covered. Here are 15 small-scale renovations to refresh your home in a weekend.

Repaint Your Walls

A paint roller with white paint is painting over a blue-grey color on an interior wall.

The Spruce / Jordan Provost

A fresh coat of paint can completely transform the look and feel of a room, and it’s relatively inexpensive. Make sure that you patch any dents or holes in the wall for the most impactful difference. The best part? Depending on the size of your space, this simple renovation can easily be completed in a weekend. 

Add Wallpaper 

Peel and stick wallpaper has totally changed the game when it comes to wallpaper installation. Gone are the days where heavy duty glue and tools are needed to wallpaper a space. Simply order your favorite peel and stick design, measure accordingly, remove the backing, and install. For an even quicker transformation, choose just one wall to wallpaper as an accent wall.

Paint a Wall Mural

If you’re feeling particularly creative, a wall mural is a unique way to add serious style and charm to a room. While it can seem intimidating, this project isn’t just reserved for artists—anyone can do it! There are plenty of tutorials and templates available online to guide you, so grab your paintbrush and have fun with it.

Replace Your Interior Doors

Replacing builder-grade interior doors is an often-overlooked renovation that can make a big impact. You can replace your doors with pre-hung doors (doors that come already mounted in frames) or slab doors (doors that can be added to the existing frame).

Repaint Your Front Door

Exterior view of a brick home with a deep red colored door.

DebraLee Wiseberg / Getty Images

Boost your curb appeal in just a few hours with a fresh front door color. Probably one of the fastest renovations to complete, you can easily change the look and feel of your entire front entry with this simple upgrade. Play it safe with a muted, neutral hue or go big and bold with a dark tone or vibrant color.

Replace Your Light Fixtures 

Give a room an instant refresh with a new light fixture. Not only will a new light fixture give your space a new look, but replacing old light fixtures can literally brighten the space.

Replace Your Flooring

Depending on the type of flooring you choose, replacing your flooring can actually be a pretty quick and painless process. If you’re looking to finish this project in less than a day, choose easier-to-install options like vinyl or laminate over more complicated installations like hardwood.

Add Built-ins

A large living room with white built-in bookshelves.

The Spruce / Christopher Lee Foto

If you’re looking for some extra storage space, adding DIY built-ins is a fantastic way to add shelf space and elevate the look of your home at the same time. Whether you have the know-how to build custom built-ins from scratch, or rely on a “shortcut” like using basic bookshelves or storage cabinets to give you a head start, this project is definitely one that you can bang out in a weekend.

Install Decorative Wall Molding 

Traditionally associated with old homes, wall molding is back in style and there are so many ways to dress up your walls with this versatile design element. Choose from classic designs like chair rail and picture frame moldings, or go with a more modern design like square frame molding. 

Add Shiplap 

Shiplap is super easy to install and lends instant charm to any space. Plus, there are so many ways to decorate with shiplap in your home. Traditionally it’s installed on walls, but you can also try using shiplap on ceilings, behind fireplaces, and so much more.

Refresh Your Grout 

If you’ve got old or dingy grout, refreshing it can make a massive difference in the overall appearance of your space. Plus, while it can be painstaking, it's also a relatively quick and easy renovation to complete. Whether you choose to dye the grout, replace it, or use a quick-fix like grout paint the result will be well worth it.

Install a Ceiling Fan 

A black ceiling fan in a bedroom with a black accent wall in the background.

The Spruce / Sarah Lee

A quick and practical renovation, installing a ceiling fan is a great way to switch up the look of a room. Plus, ceiling fans are practical way for controlling temperatures in both cold and warm months.

Repaint Your Cabinets

Is your kitchen or bathroom begging for an upgrade? Before you go all out with a full-blown renovation, try repainting the cabinets for a simple and affordable upgrade that will only take you a few hours to complete.

Add Wall Sconces

Wall sconces can completely elevate the look of a room and they are super practical too. Add wall sconces on either side of a bed, or in the living room to create a cozy reading nook. While it may seem like a complicated installation, wall sconces can be installed in a few different ways. If you or someone you know is handy with electrical work you can install fully hardwired sconces that are connected to your home’s electrical circuit. Alternately, you can purchase plug-in or battery-powered wall sconces that don’t require any electrical work at all.

Refresh Old Countertops With a Countertop Cover

A bright white countertop with food and coffee sitting on top of it.

The Spruce / Kevin Norris

If you’re not up for replacing your countertops entirely there are plenty of ways to refresh old countertops without a big renovation. You can tile over old countertops, add countertop peel and stick film, use a countertop resurfacing kit, skim coat with concrete, spray paint, or even add a wood overlay for a stylish butcher block effect.