Updating any room on a budget is a daunting task, but your living room is perhaps one of the easiest places to save cash when you’re renovating your home, thanks to refurbishable statement features like fireplaces, and – if you’re lucky – real wood floors to uncover.

Beth Jamison and her fiancé Tom Marsden, who work for a cladding materials manufacturer and a precast concrete company respectively, were able to use their industry knowledge to save some serious cash when they bought their first home. But their modest yet stylish living room makeover has ideas to inspire anyone who’s looking to switch up their space for less – even without those specialist skills.

The before

Jamison living room before shot

(Image credit: Kasia Fiszer)

When Beth and Tom bought their 1930s semi, they were impressed by the size of the rooms, but knew they’d have to take on some work. ‘It needed a bit of TLC; there was nothing wrong with it, but it wasn’t to our tastes,’ says Beth. ‘The big kitchen-diner with an island was what drew us to it, but the lounge is the perfect size for the two of us, and the garden was decent – it ticked all the boxes.’