While there are plenty of reasons to feel stressed about a move, there are at least twice as many to get excited about — especially if this move means living with a partner for the first time. Moving in and of itself is a big life change, so it almost goes without saying that moving in together is an even bigger step. On the one hand, focusing on decorating your new space is a great way to keep that excitement alive and bond over common likes, goals, and comforts. On the other hand, it can cause some friction at times, from clashing styles to lack of cash.

 

 

You can help keep the enthusiasm of cohabitation alive by checking out these four budget-friendly home decorating tips.

 

Painting

 

Painting is a relatively inexpensive way to dress up a new home or apartment. Plus, it’s fun for many couples from start to finish, from picking out a color palette (blending different temperatures, for example) that charms you both. Picking a theme is one of the most entertaining parts of the painting process. However, keep in mind that you don’t have to just toss up one color and one color only. Professional designers recommend balancing your home with a dominant color that fills 60 percent of the space, a secondary color that covers about 30, and an accent that helps the remainder really pop. You can save money on paints by checking out the “oops” tables at Home Depot — these are paint colors that didn’t come out quite how the customer expected and they decided not to buy. You can also save money to taking advantage of in-store specials.

 

Organizing

 

You are going to have a lot of stuff to comb through and combine, which is why getting creative with your storage is a critical first step when moving in together. Kitchen and bathroom storage is especially important when it comes to keeping these frequently used spaces neat and tidy. Storage can actually reflect style, from keeping hand towels in woven baskets to a hanging pot rack in the kitchen. Remember to use online coupons and promo codes for stores like Bed, Bath, and Beyond to help keep these purchases within your budget.

 

Upcycling

 

Two people coming from two separate homes means you’re likely to have double of a lot of things — at least in the beginning. Instead of throwing out or donating, see what you can upcycle, which involves taking unused items and giving them new life as something else. For example, you can take the headboard of an extra bed and make a stylish dog bed, cozy bench, or raised flower bed. Speaking of flowers, old pots can make great planters, muffin tins can help you organize small items like sewing supplies, and a little spray paint can transform a scratched up cookie sheet into a portable magnetic memo board. Best of all, if you’re using items you already have, you don’t have to spend any money!

 

Emphasizing Shared Activities

 

Moving in together means much more than sharing your space; it means sharing your life. Whether you live in an apartment or house, you create a home by doing things in that home together — cooking meals, gardening, listening to music, reading, building or crafting, cleaning, and watching movies. Living with someone can be stressful, which is why it’s important that you make time for positive activities that kindle feelings of appreciation, hope, compassion, and love. You’ll find you can fund your fun simply by using coupons from sites like Coupons.com.

 

We know that in the midst of all this change, decorating as a couple can be a path to either great joy or great strain (and sometimes both). These four cost-saving tips will help you keep it light, loving, and lively.