11 Inexpensive Wall Covering Hacks To Transform Your Home

inexpensive wall covering

Are the costs of having an Instagram-worthy home worth it despite its beauty? The walls of a room greatly influence the overall atmosphere and can be used to enhance the home’s appearance. However, wall coverings can be quite expensive. Fortunately, there are many options available for you to create that perfect atmosphere without breaking the bank! 

In this article, we share the many ways you can give walls a touch of sophistication and interest, without you walling for lack of budget.

Read on for 11 stylish and budget friendly wall covering solutions for that ugly wall:


Credit: Sirca Paints

A splash of color can automatically dictate the overall feel and personality of a room, and for this purpose, there will always be a bucket of paint for the job. In different finishes and tones, choose lighter colors to make small rooms look spacious, or pick a striking color for your accent wall. How about some grit and textured patterns? Use textured paint and apply your preferred texture, before applying a topcoat finish of color (read here for most popular wall textures). Latex-based paint can cost an average of $15 to $20 per gallon for economy paints, enough for your small room.


Credit: Griffy Walls

Want textures and patterns for your room but do not have the time and budget to install them? Go for wallpaper. Wallpaper comes in various types and designs: plain or printed wallpaper for that instant pattern for your wall or add dimension and depth with textured wallpaper ( ie faux brick wallpaper without actually paying for bricks and hefty installation). The application comes easy: peel and stick the wallpaper to your wall or apply the adhesive at the back of the wallpaper or directly to the wall and then put the wallpaper over. Do consider the ambient temperature of the room you intend to put wallpaper in. Humid rooms, like bathrooms and kitchens, might not be a good place for wallpaper, though there are variants that are water-proof, at a price. Wallpaper costs around $30-$50 for the basic double rolls.

Wall panel

Sometimes, the best way to cover a bad wall is to put another wall directly in front of it. Wall panels not only provide aesthetics to walls, but some wall panels can also provide additional insulation to help keep the room warmer. Some panels make the room look bigger by creating an illusion of height, like beadboard panels, and some give a certain modern home look to walls, like wainscoting. Depending on the type of wall panelling you will purchase, you can spend around $7 to $40 per square foot, so get an estimate for consideration.

Wood panel

Wood paneling is a great way to cover walls and gives you the flexibility to choose from different types of wood, finishes, and textures. It’s also easy to maintain, lasts longer than other wall covering materials and is an affordable option compared to painting or wallpaper. Plus, it gives your room warmth and a rustic look that can’t be replicated with any other wall-covering material. You can wood panel all the walls in the room, or as an accent wall, depending on the type of wood panel you will use. Wood panels also invite you in especially in receiving areas. Choose between shiplap for the woody look or vinyl planks for the glossy finish. Recycled wood panels are also a great way to go green (and cheaper), too. Wood panels cost between $12 to $40 per square foot, depending on the type of wood and finishing used.


Like texture paint, but less messy, you can make a bare wall more interesting by placing molding on select parts of the wall. Whether a crown or baseboard molding, you can choose wood or faux foam as the material for the mold or trim. The classic look goes best with any room, and would only cost around $10 per linear foot, sans the labor and installation. Get an estimate from a professional for consideration, or you can DIY!


Credit: CottonsRUs

Turn your bathrooms into a Zen of relaxation and or transform your kitchens into sophisticated spaces with carefully chosen tiles to adorn your walls. Available in different finishes, tiles and their distinct and printed patterns are a sure way to give appeal to splash-prone areas such as bathrooms and kitchens. It takes the worry over peeling and damage due to water or humidity! Since tiles cost around $7 to $45 depending on the size, it is recommended to get estimate of the surface area you intend to install tiles on. You can also mix and match tiles with other decorative features to improve the look of your wall and bring costs down. 


Invoke your inner gypsy and use your beloved tapestry as an accent to your bedroom or receiving area! They say each tapestry tells a tale: lowkey brag about your travels or display it as a homage to your heritage (think about heirlooms). The tapestry can be the main theme of a room’s overall look. But, do not be limited to the delicate patterns of the woven art: a beautiful curtain can also do wonders for your walls as well! Tapestry itself can be costly: it costs $100 and higher depending on the size and the weave, and you should also consider the cleaning costs too, but you can consider yard sales to check out beautiful tapestries at a considerably lower price. Ceiling-to-wall curtains usually cost $16 to $40 depending on the quality, just look at the best color and patterns, when you can!


Credit: ArtbyHannah

Minimalist room setups will get a unique pop of life with pieces of artwork strategically hung on walls. This goes best with offices or studies, as a contrast to the formal and otherwise structured look and feel of these rooms. It would also be a great idea if you’re a budding artist, and this can be a way for you to showcase your artistic talents, you just need to shell out around $25 – $40 to frame your work or ready framed canvas prints. Want to step it up a notch? Paint a mural as an accent wall for that uniquely yours centerpiece!

Wall Décor

Who says that drapes and paint and wallpaper are the only options to decorate a wall? Go beyond the usual and use wall décor to accent your wall: mirrors work perfectly on small spaces to give the illusion of having a wider space (plus you can check your glorious self out now and then). Go with your green thumb and use plants to accent the wall for that natural look: trailing plants on hanging planters and those big showy tropical plants are sure to scream rainforest vibes, just make sure they get their water and light needs. Need the morning inspiration or do you just need a bigger reminder board than your fridge? Chalkboard and cork panels will be perfect for those. What’s great about these is that you can rearrange them whenever you feel like it with ease, no heavy disassembly is required.

Acoustic Panels

For hobbies that require some soundproofing, such as a music hobby (electric guitars or drums) or for your man-cave needs, acoustic panels can help absorb loud background noises and decrease noise pollution (and lesser complaints from Mr Theodore next door). Acoustic panels range between $20 to $50, but if you do not want to spend a whole lot, you can DIY it with egg cartons. Purchase some in the market or if you can, save your egg cartons from the grocery, paint them with the colour of your choice and stick them on!

Ornamental Shelves or Cupboards

Credit: Pottery Barn

Utilize that wall space by placing shelves, cupboards, or bookcases, and displaying your collection of trinkets, books, and other oddities. These can take the attention away from the bare wall and give it a different appeal. These arrangements go best with living rooms and the study or home office. Shelves cost as low as $10 to more organized units costing $60. You can also look at yard sales or buy a recycled shelf online, to save more.

Buying Guide

Just like any home renovation, choosing how you prettify the walls of your humble abode greatly depends on the space you have and the overall budget that you can spend for the entire work. When choosing for an inexpensive wall covering, take into consideration the following:

  1. Size of your wall: This will help you determine how much material you’ll need.
  2. Type of coverage: Do you want a full-wall coverage or just an accent wall?
  3. Room’s purpose: What type of activities go on in the room you’re planning to cover? Is it a bedroom, living area, or kitchen?
  4. Maintenance: Consider if you want something easy to clean and maintain for longer use.
  5. Style: Go with a style that will fit your overall interior theme. This can be achieved by looking for the right texture, colour, pattern, and materials. Be limited only by your imagination, and feel free to combine different wall-covering options to achieve the vibe you would like your room to have.
  6. Cost: Consider the cost of both the material and installation to get a better idea of how much you’ll need to spend for your wall covering project.
  7. DIY: While most of these suggestions require professional advice, especially in installation, DIY has been on the rise. Most of the seemingly simple ways to cover walls, such as wallpaper, can already mimic some of the different wall finishes and can give most budget-tight owners the room of their dreams. 

Wrap Up

In conclusion, wall coverings are a great way to add character and style to your home without burning a hole in your pocket. From creative options like tiles, tapestry and artwork to functional solutions such as acoustic panels and ornamental shelves, there’s something for every budget. With the right selection of materials and design elements combined with a clear vision, you can create a signature and attractive space.

Enjoy your over-wall!