Your home is your sanctuary, and if you feel like you’re fighting with it in one way or another, it’s time to make some changes. While some upgrades can be budget and DIY-friendly, others are simply worth the investment. At the end of the day, you’ll likely spend most of your time in your home. If you don’t or are happy with how you’ve done up your home, celebrate! It’s hard to reach the stage where you’re 100% happy with your property.

If you’re one of the ones that have struggled to make the space feel like home, or alternatively, have struggled to feel absolutely comfortable, then this guide is for you: 

Start with the Function 

The best place to start with any property update or upgrade is with its function. In this case, think utilities. While yes, upgrading to energy-efficient alternatives to your current setup is important, you’ll first want to look into adding essentials. 

Air Conditioning 

Global heating has meant that many places in the UK (particularly in the South-West) have experienced longer, hotter summers than ever before, and no, they won’t be going away or going back to normal. If the regular heat waves leave you baking uncomfortably in your home, then it’s time to upgrade your property. Don’t assume that you can’t have anything more than a mobile air conditioning unit, either. The most energy-efficient and effective options can be installed directly in each room. This is done with a wall mounted air conditioner without outdoor unit

Instead of the condenser being installed outside of your home, it’s installed indoors (usually in a cupboard). The water that’s produced during the condensing process is then drained through your wastewater supply. Units like this are compact, energy efficient, and can usually cool one room or your whole property if you so choose. This way, you can beat the heat efficiently while keeping your costs as low as possible. 


We need many things, but we don’t necessarily want to see or have cluttered up around the home. From kitchen supplies to clothing, having the right place for all of these items is far more essential than you may think. You don’t need to go in for an expensive custom closet install, but you owe it to yourself to maximize your space in any way you can. Closets should have shelving, clothes rails, and, if not, drawers, baskets, and boxes. Add more vertical storage to your space with tall bookcases or freestanding cabinets. You’ll also want to look at multi-functional furniture when it’s time to upgrade so that you can benefit from hidden storage

Smart Home System

Smart homes are the future, even if you opt for the more low-tech option. While a smart home can be set up to make you coffee when your morning alarm goes off automatically, the more practical benefits of a smart home system are appealing to everyone. The biggest benefit is energy efficiency. With a smart home system, you can automatically turn off all your appliances when you leave home. On your way back, when you’re at a specific distance away, your heating can turn on so that it’s comfortable for when you go home. 

While yes, timers can help, they won’t account for any variations. With a smart home system, your heating will be off, for example, until you’re almost home. This way, even if you went out for a night, stayed over somewhere else, or were just stuck in traffic, your home will remain off so you can save money. 

Next Is Feel 

Once you’re happy with the functionality of your space, it’s time to work on the feel or the vibes. The décor and overall styling of your home is going to play a big part in this, yes, but before you worry about the aesthetic, focus on these practical elements that will make a huge difference in how you feel in your space: 

  • Brightness 

A bright home is a happy home, and there are multiple ways to get it. If you don’t have a lot in terms of natural light, then use bright colors, mirrors, and other reflective surfaces to bounce the light you to bring in as much as possible. To make your property feel cozy and comfortable, invest in quality low-light options like table lamps or floor lamps to bring the eye down and case warm light against where your furniture is, rather than use the overhead light. 

  • Air Flow 

Air flow is crucial to any property, and not all options will naturally have good airflow. Though it may seem the opposite, new builds often come with terrible airflow. This is what makes them feel stuffy and humid, particularly in summer. If that new build has windows on at least two walls in your main rooms, however, or is open from the front to the back, then you can open your windows to a cross breeze. 

If you don’t have that, then you can increase your airflow in a few ways. You can install an air exchanger, add another window, or use an air conditioning unit or fan. If you have multiple windows that don’t seem to be working, it may be the type of window itself. If it only opens from the top, you won’t get a cross breeze, so consider changing those out. 

  • Layout 

The layout can be changed in many ways. If you’re thinking about physically changing the walls and the overall structural layout of your property, then do that first before anything else. When it comes to the order in which you make upgrades, think of it in layers. Anything structural is the bones of your home, the bare basics, and therefore should be committed to first. 

Of course, if you’re thinking of removing a wall or just putting in an archway instead of a door, this can be done at any time since you’re simply adapting the existing structural layout instead of refitting. The final way to adjust the layout is with your furnishings. You could remodel your kitchen, for example, and so long as your appliances and the room stay the same can keep costs low. When you do this, consider how a different shape of a kitchen can help you. You could add an island counter to add a breakfast bar area, for example. 

Finally, There’s Aesthetic 

While the last in this list, this section will also take the longest. While there is no right or wrong way to design a home or style a property, there are a few key elements you’ll want to keep in mind: 

  • Keep to Your Tastes 

It’s easy to get swept up in the trends and like something in someone else’s home, only to realize it doesn’t work on your own. That’s why you need to be slow about making changes. Save ideas and then forget about them. Then, periodically go through and remove the ideas that actually don’t work either at all or with the ideas you like better. 

  • Consider Texture as Well as Appearance

When it comes to anything, from the furniture you buy to the paneling you add to the wall, always consider texture. Mix and match textures to suit you, but more importantly, consider how the elements you interact with feel or at least look up close. Something can look excellent from far away but feel awful when you use it. Always opt for the option that gives you the best of both worlds.