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David T. Price
New paint, carpet and crown molding can bring new life to existing furniture as evidenced in this room.
Before you march out to buy everything, consider that a lot of us have accessories and furniture we aren't using or that could be repurposed.

There aren't many things that provide the same satisfaction as a new look for your home.

Just a clean coat of paint and rearranging the furniture can help a room function better, feel fresh and make you smile at a job well done.

Whether you have newly remodeled space, an addition to decorate or existing space to spruce up, we want to offer you a few ideas to help you save money in the process.

Most of us don't have the means to go out and replace all the furniture and accessories in our houses all at once. Usually, the items in our homes are collected over time.

Of course, if you have created new space with a renovation, you will probably need multiple new items to furnish the space.

Before you march out to buy everything, consider that a lot of us have accessories and furniture we aren't using or that could be repurposed.

Unfortunately, we all tend to keep too much "stuff" around, but when you are redecorating, such stored items may actually come in handy.

We have heard great stories of interior design consultants working with homeowners to repurpose old heirlooms that are collecting dust in the attic. One such story was where a client was able to clean up her grandmother's old secretary desk to repurpose it as a wine bar for the living room.

If the framework of the furniture is in good condition, there is no reason you can't refinish, stain, paint or reupholster items for focal points in your room.

If you don't have an attic or garage full of stored furniture and accessories, start searching for secondhand furniture that might work for you.

Try online classified ads, — such as ksl.com and craigslist.com — thrift stores, garage sales or even Grandma's attic.

Back in the day, furniture was made to last, so Grandma's old sofa may be reupholstered and be good to go for another 20 years.

The trick is to reupholster (or buy) big furniture pieces in neutral colors. Play up the colors and trends with throw pillows and accessories. This will make switching out your look less expensive.

Another way to save is to reupholster all your items at the same time. Most upholsterers give you a discount for multiple items. If you are working with a design consultant or interior designer, they should be able to help you choose the right fabric and get you a better deal with the upholsterer.

Even for a limited project to refurbish part of your home, investing in the expertise of professionals will save you money and time. It will minimize the chance that you will make a mistake that you will have to live with or pay to have redone.

Faced with strict budget constraints, people often seek to minimize design fees to "save money" for the bricks and mortar (or paint and fabric) of the project.

Though it may be counterintuitive, the truth is that the more time and money you spend up front, the fewer delays and additional costs you will encounter when doing the actual work involved.

It is our contention that you will end up paying about the same amount of money on your project whether you try to do most of it yourself or whether you pay for professional expertise.

The difference is in the quality of both the process and the product. You will get more bang for your buck if you recognize the value professional design can bring to your project. Make sure you pay each professional for what they do best.

Just as you would probably not ask your architect which type of nail the contractor should use on the wall sheathing, rely on the training and education of your architect and/or designer for questions relating to light, flow and proportion.

If you choose to hire an interior designer, use them for their expertise and not for the grunt work you could do yourself. It will save you hundreds of dollars if you do the legwork to collect samples and narrow down the decisions so your interior designer can help you finalize your choices.

Another budget stretching trick of the trade is to mix high- and low-priced items. While you want the best quality for your budget, you don't have to spend a fortune to make a project look amazing.

If you spend money in your kitchen for a beautiful slab of marble, you won't need those expensive drapes and curtain rods.

Lowe's or Home Depot may have an inexpensive accessory that works just as well as the designer item and costs 50 percent to 75 percent less.

This is another benefit of working with a design consultant: They can source your design project from exclusive shops to vintage outlets to big box stores.

This is also the reason to make all your material and equipment selections before you begin the project. When you have the big picture, you can balance your splurges with cost-conscious choices that will keep the overall budget in tact.

So our tips for a fall refresher for your home are to rearrange, repurpose and plan ahead with the help of appropriate design professionals to get the best result for your investment of time and money.

Finally, remember, the power of paint. Items you think need to be replaced may only look tired against the drab walls.

A new color palette could make the same old furniture pop. The trick is choosing the right color, which is a whole other column. Stay tuned!

Architects Ann Robinson and Annie V. Schwemmer are the founders of Renovation Design Group, www.renovationdesigngroup.com, a local architectural firm specializing in home remodels.