Updated December 2023
I think we are all looking forward to a break this Christmas after the year that was 2023! 
If you have a few weeks off work why not make the most of this time to fit in some easy DIY projects to improve your home? There are always little things that you can tackle yourself. We’ve spoken to our experts and put together a list of easy DIY home renovation projects for over the summer holidays.

Small improvements can really make a big impact, and you can spruce your house up beautifully to launch 2024 in the right way. Plus, we Renovating Mums love the added feel-good vibes that come from actually doing it yourself (and we need all the feel-good vibes we can get right now :-).

Some tips before you get started

Know your limitations

DIY and home renovation projects are all about knowing your limitations. Some jobs need to be left to the professionals.

For example, bathrooms can be an expensive but effective investment towards modernising your home. Every bathroom and laundry must have a waterproofing membrane designed to keep any water or leaks inside the room and directed to your floor waste. Removing items like baths, tiles etc and replacing them yourself could potentially end up penetrating the membrane and creating further damage throughout your home.

I recommend speaking to a professional before attempting to replace fixtures, to assess the potential risks. It may be worth investing in a new vanity, shaving cabinet, and a coat of paint, or it might be worth saving up the extra funds and completing a full bathroom renovation, eliminating any potential further issues.

See below for great ideas for projects from our expert trades; we have gone directly to the people in the know!

Summer Holidays Home Renovation: Easy DIY Projects to Improve Your Home

In the Bathroom

  • Do some easy silicone replacement to give your bathroom that refreshed clean feel. Make sure that you choose the right silicone for the job and check out YouTube for neat ‘how to videos‘.
  • Look at replacing and updating handles on your vanity and cupboards. This easy change will bring new life to an old bathroom
  • Consider replacing your vanity with a new one, Just In Place have some beautiful original options available
Summer holidays home renovation, easy DIY projects to improve your home
Photo: Custom Timber Vanity, Just In Place
  • Re-grout floor and wall tiles (again, youtube has some great videos – thank you Bunnings)
  • Add or change accessories like hooks, toilet roll holders, towel rails or mirrors.
  • Add alternative storage like baskets for toilet rolls, timber shelving, a bamboo ladder for towels, all of which will add more personality to your bathroom for less $$
  • A bit of greenery will add positive vibes; this can be placed on a stool, near the basin or try a hanging plant in one of the corners. Go with a full-sized tree or even something small like a vase of flowers or some succulents.

In the Kitchen

  • Rearrange your storage with labeled unified containers. We love IKEA for this purpose and suggest spices, dried food and even storage containers for your fridge.
Summer holidays home renovation, easy DIY projects to improve your home
Photo: Ikea spice jars ‘Rajtan’
  • If you are handy you can resurface your laminated bench top. Your nearest Bunnings has a number of suitable DIY products, ask for advice at the counter according to the specific finish you would like to achieve.
  • Like the bathroom you can update your cabinet handles for a quick, cost-effective change. Just remember to measure the screw hole distance of your current handles and ensure your new ones are the same to save holes in your cabinet doors 🙂
  • Give a new look to your kitchen splashback by painting the tiles & re-grouting – finish the job with a good grout sealer to protect against discoloration.
  • Find a place in the kitchen or near the kitchen to hang a piece of art, it can be even framed drawing from one of your kids. That ‘pop’ of personality can really lift a space, plus the kids will love seeing their hard work hanging on the wall.

In the Lounge and Bedrooms

  • Think of creating some big impact feature walls – refresh the colour, consider adding texture through wallpaper or even add a pattern with Easycraft wall VJ panelling or wall moldings and trim.
  • Indoor plants – bring the outside in! Also consider the pots, you can use woven baskets for that soft organic Hamptons feel or some quirky pieces of pottery, we’re loving these by Jones & Co in Surry Hills
Face Vase Pottery by Jones & Co
  • Review your lighting – give your light fittings a good clean and consider new fittings, or even pendant lights for a new look
  • Update cushions/throws and add a new rug to the floor to define a space, simple but very effective
  • New blinds, sheers and curtains – a continuing trend for 2023 are floor to ceiling sheers
  • Add a feature mirror. Consider your placement of mirrors carefully; put them in the best location to bounce light around and increase the sense of space i.e. on a back wall.
  • Think about a photo wall. This is also a great project to work on with the kids… select some fabulous photos that evoke meaning and memories for you all and place them as a collection on the wall. We love mis-matched frames for that added character and find these look fab in long hallways or stairwells.
  • Upcycle! Over that piece of furniture? wish it was white instead of blue? Chalk paint is fabulously user friendly and it is very quick to dramatically change an item of furniture. Normally no sanding is needed which is also a plus! After the repaint think about new handles and knobs…

For Window and Doors

  • Clean Your Windows. This sounds like an obvious one but it’s truly amazing what a good window clean can do.
  • Replacing Window Hardware. When windows are open, the window hardware, i.e., handles and locks are exposed to the elements.  Unfortunately, this means that they can rust quite quickly, especially in homes close to the salt air. Replacing the hardware is easy to do if you have a drill and screwdriver.
  • Vacuum out of the bottom tracks of all doors and windows to remove any dirt, sand & debris that builds up over time
  • Do not hose down the windows or doors with a high-pressure hose – they are not designed for this and may cause leaking inside or glass breakage
  • Check all weep holes in the window or doors sills and if blocked clear any debris to allow water to drain out of the window system when it rains
  • Check timber finishes regularly and re-coat if required
  • Lubricate any moving parts such as rollers, locks and hinges with a silicone-based spray
  • Flyscreens can be cleaned by vacuuming or washing with a soft brush.   Allow to dry thoroughly before re-installing.

Upgrade safety and install childproofing

Childproof your home sydney
Photo: Check your Safety Gates

Childproofing is often a job that gets put to one side – now is the time to get onto this:

  • Fix any furniture such as shelves or chests of drawers that could tip if a child tried to climb on it.
  • Fix any child-proofing fasteners that have come loose.
  • Fix any baby gates that have broken or come loose.
  • Look around outside and fix any fences or gates that have become a problem, especially anything around the pool area.
  • Install Child-Proof Locks on doors and windows. All strata buildings in NSW must be fitted with child-safe devices that lock the window opening at less than 12.5cm on windows that are first floor or above to prevent children falling out. It’s not an expensive job and the safety devices can be easy to fit. The peace of mind it will provide you with is priceless. 
  • Also note that flyscreens do not stop children falling. Run your eye over each room of the house and ensure furniture is kept away from windows so children cannot use these to climb

For the Outdoors

  • Think MULCH MULCH MULCH especially over Christmas if you are going away. The best thing to use is sugar cane – easy to buy at Bunnings and easy to spread from the bag. Aim to cover the soil with a 50-100mm thickness of the new mulch and remember not mulch right up to the base of your trees and shrubs as this can cause the base to rot.
  • Tidy up and rake leaves, clean out the drains
  • Lightly top dress your lawn to help level out any depressions and alleviate ponding
  • Get on top of the weeds
  • Consider a small vege/herb garden. It’s a great summer project with the kids and they will love being involved and seeing their hard work bare ‘fruit’. Even a few pots and planters with cherry tomatoes and lettuces will bring smiles.
Summer holidays home renovation, easy DIY projects to improve your home
Photo: Little pots of seedlings & veges are great for little hands
  • Update outdoor furniture with a thorough clean and depending on finish you can give it a quick sand and fresh coat of oil or stain.
  • Don’t forget new outdoor cushions for that pop of colour or you can even have your old ones recovered!

Phew…what a list!

Good luck with all of your DIY projects and be sure to get some time off with loved ones as well!

Remember, if you’re looking for friendly advice & support, check in with our FB Community where you can share the highs (& occasional lows) of your projects.

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