UPDATED June 12th, 2018

When someone told me April is National Home Improvement Month, I thought they were joking. A month for home improvement? Really?

I figured the idea must have been concocted by Home Depot or Lowe’s. But it’s a real holiday, started by the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).

Back during the real estate boom, everyone was renovating their homes. Homeowners could go to the bank and get a loan based on their enthusiasm. Improving our homes meant higher property values and more equity, and this translated into more loans.

It has taken me 10 years to remodel my home, a 1955 ranch style house I bought from a little old lady. It was pink and had all kinds of frilly window treatments and peach colored carpet. It needed a lot of work.

My biggest projects were the remodel of the master suite, the TV room and the kitchen. I did all the work myself, with some help from a friend. And no matter what I did, it was always expensive. I suppose it could have cost five times as much if I’d had hired someone do the work, but still, materials are expensive.

Home improvement on a tight budget is not easy and it takes patience. Here are a six ways to plan your home improvements on a budget.

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