Budget Mobile Home Decorative Ideas & Tips

If you put too much money into decorative finishes for your mobile home, chances are, you won't get a full return on the investment. Rather than over decorating a relatively inexpensive residence, look at more appropriate budget ideas and tips. And don't forget to take before and after pictures.

Paint the Place

Paint is moderately cheaper, and, ironically, often more value-adding ironically, than wallpaper, and significantly less costly than hanging drywall to cover up dated wall panels -- and, anyway, drywall joint compound can crack during a move.

Paint everything paintable, or at least the walls, ceilings, exterior siding and old cabinets.

  • Apply an appropriate primer, such as one for glossy paneling or exterior aluminum.
  • Use pale paint colors -- tinted whites will do -- to make a small home bright and airy, or rich, saturated colors to make a double-wide look more homey.
  • Semi-gloss or eggshell paint is more washable than matte paint, and it won't exaggerate flaws, such as paneling strips and staples, as much as high-gloss paint.

Frugal Furniture

Small homes benefit from double-duty furniture, but even basic pieces that double as something else -- an entryway bench with a shoe rack; an open bookcase to smartly disguise the home's hallway effect; a coffee table with a hinged, liftable top -- are commonly more expensive to buy than to make yourself.

Another plus to build-it-yourself furniture is that you can scale down the plans for a compact size that works in tight spaces. Choose designs made from two-by-fours, which are inexpensive, durable, and easy to cut, sand, stain, or paint.

Free or Cheap Kitchen Improvements

It doesn't matter if you live in a single- or double-wide mobile home -- or a mansion -- a good-looking, efficient kitchen is a common goal or desire -- but typically, a kitchen redo is one one of the costliest home-improvement projects. Rather than replacing dated cabinets, take off the upper doors for an open effect that expands space by letting the eye travel right to the wall. If you're renting, store the doors safely under a bed or in a closet.

If you wish that your old, mismatched or off-colored appliances were stainless steel, paint them. Use the right metallic stainless-steel-colored paint, such as appliance enamel spray paint; an inappropriate paint can be flammable or emit toxic fumes, especially when used on a stove. Paint outside for ventilation and to avoid overspray issues. This project rejuvenates not only the fridge, stove and dishwasher, but gives the entire kitchen a newer vibe for about the cost of dinner out.