40 ugly problems around your house that can actually be fixed for under $35

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ByLisa Fogarty and K. Megan Lawrence
Originally Published: 
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Your house isn’t ugly — it just hasn’t blossomed and reached its full potential (yet). If you’ve only been able to focus on the eyesores in your home lately, and the cost of fixing those issues makes you think they’ll never be resolved, you’re in for a treat. Not only can you give your space a much-needed facelift, but the ugly problems around your house can actually be fixed for under $35.

A well-lived-in home is going to show signs of wear and tear every now and then, but there’s no need to stress about it. Maybe there are loose knobs falling off every time you open the dresser or chips in your walls or hardwood floors that have seen better days. Whatever the dilemma, there’s an budget-friendly product to tackle it — and, in many cases, a chic solution like the artsy ceramic cabinet door knobs you’ll find on this list that will breathe new life into old furniture. Don’t give up and don’t give in and throw money away — fix those ugly problems with these reliable and affordable solutions.


Problem: Dark & dingy corners in your home that lack proper lighting

Solution: These stick-on lights that add instant illumination

Without proper lighting, corners and spots in your home can look like horror movie settings — but custom lights cost a fortune. These LED stick-on lights are the ideal solution because they’re inexpensive, long-lasting, and simple to use. Adhere them under cabinets, along dark corridors, or in dingy corners of your basement or laundry room to create beauty in a formerly ugly zone. The battery-powered lights run for 100 hours and feature a warm white glow.


Problem: Worn-out-looking furniture that could use a new look

Solution: The furniture glaze that gives your pieces an antique patina

Before you buy new furniture, consider working with what you already have. With a few swipes of a brush, this water-based furniture glaze will give existing pieces a second life. The low VOC formula works over existing paint or raw wood, leaving an antique finish and giving your furniture depth. It comes in six colors and can also be mixed with the brand’s paint line to create custom shades.


Problem: Chips in paint that make your walls look old

Solution: These paint brush pens that cover imperfections

Fill these small, handheld brush pens with paint and apply them in small amounts to every small split in the wall that you can’t stand to pass by and see every day. The touch-up pen set includes five pens that can be used on drywall patches, wood, walls, and furniture. It makes touch-ups a breeze.


Problem: Expensive hard floors that get scratched when furniture moves

Solution: These stoppers that keep beds & couches in place

The minute you start accidentally moving a chair or bed around you run the risk of scratching up expensive hard floors and hardwood. These rubber furniture stoppers are so simple but genius because you just slide them onto the feet of furniture and beds and they keep pieces from slipping around and messing with flooring. These stoppers come in a set of six and are brown to match your decor.


Problem: Throw rugs that won't lie flat

Solution: The grippers that tack them to the floor

Keep rugs in place with these adhesive rug corner grippers that hold rugs down without damaging floors. You might not realize it, but fixing a curled rug can really bring your entire room together. The pack comes with four V-shape corner adhesives that are designed with EVA foam tips so you can lift them right up off the floor.


Problem: A messy junk drawer that’s brimming with loose batteries

Solution: An organizer that sorts batteries by size

It’s tempting to keep a junk drawer in your kitchen or another room where you stash items that never seem to have a rightful home — like batteries. But in doing so you’re limiting your space in terms of functionality and beauty. This battery organizer and tester has a cover and holds up to 93 batteries of various types and sizes. The battery tester can be removed so that you can conveniently find out which batteries still have power left (which is a money saver). And you can store the unit in a closet or cabinet or even mount it to a wall to save space.


Problem: Too many shoes, too little storage space

Solution: An over-the-door organizer that keeps every pair in place

If your floors are littered with shoes, it may be time to utilize untapped space in your home. Attach this over-the-door shoe organizer to interior doors for a slim, space-saving solution. It holds up to 12 pairs of shoes and has clear vinyl pockets for easy access and visibility. You can also use it to stash other small items like toiletries, accessories, and toys.


Problem: Water that leaks from under your frameless shower door

Solution: This seal that keeps your floors dry

Keep a potentially disastrous problem from forming by cutting off any shower leaks at the source with this frameless shower door seal. The vinyl seal creates a protective strip along the bottom of shower doors, preventing water from seeping out and wearing away at tiles and hard floors. It’s simple to install and requires no sticky adhesive.


Problem: Holes in walls that are bringing down the look of your room

Solution: A kit for repairing tiny holes

Finding small holes in your walls doesn’t mean having to call expensive contractors and painters. You can take matters into your own hands by fixing holes with this 3M high-strength small hole repair kit. The kit includes spackling that contains a primer, a self-adhesive patch, a putty knife, and sanding paper — everything you need for a quick wall repair for less than $15.


Problem: Plastic hangers that leave clothing misshapen

Solution: Some high-quality hangers made from wood

Those plastic hangers in your closet may be cheap, but there’s a real risk to using them: they can stretch out clothing and leave the shoulders of blouses and sweaters misshapen. Instead, invest in these quality wooden hangers that will last forever and boast a high 4.8-star rating. They come with 10 in a pack, feature nonslip rubber grips that keep strappy tanks and camisoles from slipping off, and have a 360-degree rotating hook. Choose from natural, vintage, or cherry wood.


Problem: Ratty bath mats that have collected mildew

Solution: An absorbent bath mat made with memory foam

There’s nothing worse than stepping out of the shower and onto a ratty, half-wet bath mat that didn’t dry from the last time you used it. This memory foam and microfiber bath mat is strong, durable, and highly absorbent — so it will dry between uses, according to reviewers. It comes in 21 colors and seven sizes. One of its more than 41,000 five-star reviewers wrote, “[…] It doesn’t slip on the floor, even when the floor is wet. Great absorbency, and very easy to launder. I love it. Great value.”


Problem: Moldy dishcloths that are in your kitchen

Solution: These fast-drying dishcloths that are reusable

All of those cotton dishcloths hanging around your kitchen and taking up space on the handles of appliances can turn moldy and smelly fast because they may not absorb liquids well. The smartest swap (and one that will save you tons of money on paper towels) is this pack of cult-favorite Swedish dishcloths with more than 46,000 reviews. The cloths are highly absorbent, reusable, and ultimately biodegradable. They come in packs of 10 in different colors and can be used for everything — from drying dishes to cleaning.


Problem: Drawers full of mismatched cooking tools

Solution: A complete set of matching cooking utensils that fit in a countertop canister

No more digging through disorganized kitchen drawers. This stainless steel kitchen utensil set has everything you need to make a meal, from an everyday spatula to the potato masher and tongs. There are 10 pieces in the set, and it’s all housed in a compact stainless steel canister that looks sleek on any countertop.


Problem: Plastic bags that are crammed into kitchen cabinets

Solution: This grocery bag holder that mounts to the wall

Snag this plastic bag saver, mount it to a wall and use it to store several bags at once. When you need a bag, simply pull one out and the others will remain in place. It comes with all of the mounting hardware that you need. This is a great little invention, as plastic bags are simple to reuse and handy around the house, but can also be somewhat of an eyesore.


Problem: Greasy, grimy stovetops that seem impossible to clean

Solution: The eraser sponges that clean just about anything

No matter what you do, there are certain areas of your home that are notoriously difficult to get clean. Swapping regular cleaners for this magic cleaning sponge can get those areas spotless in no time. The thick sponge is made with gentle melamine and is truly a universal cleaning tool that works on anything from leather shoes to marble countertops. Wet it and get all of your surfaces cleaner.


Problem: Pots & pans are scattered in your cabinet

Solution: This rack that neatly stacks everything

This pan organizer rack is a beautiful solution for a messy problem: it features eight tiers and can be stored vertically or horizontally. The dividers are adjustable to accommodate a variety of cookware and it’s designed with an antislip silicone base layer to keep it in place.


Problem: Scrambling for supplies to clean up spills and other messes

Solution: This convenient paper towel holder that sits on your countertop

You may not appreciate the convenience of this chrome paper towel holder until you make a mess and have to dig through cabinets to find a roll. Its metal construction makes it sturdy, and ball feet keep the paper towels elevated, so they don’t accidentally absorb spills.


Problem: Loose cables & wires that are making rooms look messy

Solution: These holders that wrangle your cords

Hold pesky wires and cables in place with these cable clips, which come with two in a pack. Each clip can hold up to five wires. The clips have a 3M self-adhesive backing that sticks to surfaces like desks and tables and you can choose from white, black, or multicolored options.


Problem: Treacherous trips up and down an unlit stairwell

Solution: These battery-operated stair lights with motion sensors

Add a measure of safety to your stairwells with these wireless LED stair lights. The slim, battery-operated lights are activated by motion sensors and emit a warm white light for 30 seconds after detecting movement. There are three lights in a set, and they easily mount to your stairs with either screws or adhesive tape.


Problem: Faded house numbers that are hard to read

Solution: These address numbers that are modern & sleek

If your home lacks curb appeal, start with a simple swap that can make a huge difference: replace faded and cracked house numbers with this more modern and chic pick. The 5-inch numbers are large enough to see from far away and are made from a UV-protected material that won’t rust over time.


Problem: A cabinet full of old mismatched mugs

Solution: This modern coffee mug set that’s made of glass

Whether you’re drinking your morning coffee or entertaining guests, this modern glass coffee mug set lets you do it with style. The mugs are made of tempered glass and each hold 10.75 ounces, or just over a cup, of liquid. The mugs are suitable for hot and cold drinks, and a cool touch handle helps ensure that your fingers don’t get burned while you’re sipping hot beverages.


Problem: A door that constantly bangs into the wall

Solution: A magnetic doorstop that keeps doors open

This stainless steel door stopper holds doors in place using magnetic force, which prevents them from slamming into walls. Constructed with soft-catch technology, this tool stops and holds doors without using excess force. The stopper comes with a user manual and mounting screws. “They were pretty easy to install, the magnets work well and make transporting packages and groceries to and from the garage much easier,” a reviewer wrote.


Problem: Cabinets that get messy because you can’t see the dark corners

Solution: An LED light rope that offers a clear view

This LED light strip illuminates the dark spaces in your cabinets while staying discreetly out of sight. With three feet of lighting, this strip covers a solid amount of cabinet space. Adhering to wood, metal, and plastic, the lights are made to stick easily to the tops of your cabinets and shelves. A single power button turns them on and off.


Problem: An entryway table that’s crowded with leashes, keys & mail

Solution: A key & mail holder you can hang on the wall

If the table in your entryway is a chaotic assortment of envelopes, pet leashes, car keys, etc, this wall-mounted organizer will streamline your space with hooks for keys and purses and a shelf for decor or mail. Installation is easy, with screws and expansion nails included.


Problem: Under-the-bed storage that’s visible

Solution: A bed skirt that conceals boxes and more

There’s no excuse to leave storage tubs or unsightly dust bunnies exposed with this budget-friendly bed skirt. It is made of soft brushed microfiber and has structured pleats for a clean, tailored look. The skirt comes in multiple sizes and colors, and it’s wrinkle-free and fade-resistant.


Problem: Shoes that are jumbled in your closet

Solution: These shoe organizers that slide under the bed

This set of shoe storage organizers works well for storing shoes that aren’t currently in season. If it’s summer, they can store winter boots, and come wintertime, they can store sandals and espadrilles. Storing 16 pairs of shoes and four pairs of boots, these organizers also have a clear vinyl cover so their contents are easy to see.


Problem: A kitchen sink area that’s cluttered

Solution: This caddy for soap and sponges

This soap dispenser set is handy in a few ways: it keeps the big plastic bottle of Dawn out of sight, and it dispenses soap directly onto your sponge. This set comes with a hand soap dispenser and a silicone tray that not only holds a sponge but dispenses soap onto it. Another perk: it comes with a drip tray and ventilated shelf that keeps your sponge out of standing water. “I always hated having a huge plastic soap bottle on the counter and nowhere to really put the sponge (especially since our sink is in our island),” one reviewer wrote. “But this solves both of those problems!”


Problem: A refrigerator with loose produce & cans rolling around

Solution: These bins that organize every last thing

If you’re tired of cans rolling around your fridge or wondering what to do with an overflow of condiments, this eight-pack of stackable refrigerator bins is here to help. These bins will help maximize storage space in your fridge and freezer — or, you can use them in your pantry or kitchen cabinets if that works better.


Problem: Knickknacks that clutter up your tables

Solution: These floating shelves for an organized and artistic display

Turn a bare wall into something striking with these interlocking floating cube shelves. The cubes are made of sturdy MDF and overlap to create a stylish display for pictures, books, plants, and lightweight decorative objects. Assembly is a snap and mounting hardware is included.


Problem: Beat up salt boxes and uncovered salt cellars that collect dust

Solution: This salt box with a secure swivel lid

An essential ingredient like salt deserves to be stored in something nicer than the box it came in. This bamboo salt bowl is a lovely choice for the table — it has a round, modern shape and a magnetic swiveling lid that protects the contents within. Or, if you want to keep your office space neat, you can even use it to store small supplies like paper clips and rubber bands.


Problem: Tile grout that’s stained & grimy

Solution: A grout pen that brightens everything up

This grout pen is sort of magical with its ability to recolor the grout in your kitchen and bathroom for a like-new appearance. Covering up to 150 feet of grout, this water-based formula covers grimy stains — and it’s available in different colors to match the colors you need. “It covered completely and I have beige grout,” a reviewer wrote. “It has lasted without reapplying for 5 years.”


Problem: Mops & brooms that are tangled up in a corner

Solution: A wall-mounted rack that holds tools upright

This wall-mounted mop and broom holder is the perfect solution to having cleaning tools falling over in your closet. With three clamps and four hooks, this organizer can hold mops, brooms, and other cleaning supplies — it’ll be a space-saver in closets and garages. The clamps are made with nonslip silicone that holds handles in place, and the holder comes with the accessories you need to install it on your wall.


Problem: Detergent that drips all over your laundry station

Solution: This holder & drip tray that prevents soapy messes

This clever organizer and holder prevents mess by fastening detergent bottles in place using a strap and rubber feet that hold the station in place. Tilted at a slight angle, this holder also ensures you’re able to get the last drops from the bottle, creating less waste.


Problem: A bulky dish drying rack that takes up counter space

Solution: This silicone dish drying mat that’s easy to store between uses

There’s no need for a dish drying rack to hog up counter space when you only need to wash a few items. This silicone dish drying mat is a simple addition to your kitchen that’s neat, effective, and easy to maintain. Just wipe it clean and roll it up to store it away between uses.


Problem: A messy linen closet that’s packed to the gills

Solution: These under-the-bed storage bags with clear windows

If you’re short on storage for seasonal clothes and bedding, these slim but spacious under-bed storage bins are a smart solution. They’re made of soft, breathable polypropylene, so they won’t scratch floors as you pull them in and out, and clear windows make it easy to find what you’re looking for.


Problem: Kitchen drawers so unruly that it’s impossible to find anything

Solution: The drawer organizers that keep everything sorted

Stop futzing around for flatware and keep all of your kitchen utensils in order with this bamboo kitchen drawer organizer. It has an adjustable design to fit different drawer widths and offers your choice of 7 to 9 compartments, some of which are long enough to fit most serving spoons and tongs. Bamboo adds warmth to the kitchen, and the organizer is easy to clean and maintain.


Problem: A tub crowded with shampoo & body wash bottles

Solution: A shower caddy that clears up clutter

This shower caddy is great for a few reasons: its rustic look, anti-swing design, unique compartments for bars of soap, hooks for loofahs, and areas for smaller and larger bottles. Designed to be rustproof, this caddy is made to allow for proper airflow and more efficient drying. “Holds a good amount of weight and I’m pretty sure I can add more if I need to,” one shopper shared. “Currently I have six of the full-size shampoo and conditioner bottles in the baskets as well as a full-size bottle of body wash.”


Problem: Cabinets and refrigerators that are cluttered with food

Solution: These stackable storage bins that keep ingredients in order

Does your fridge or pantry look like a comically overstuffed closet? Then it may be time to purchase these kitchen storage containers. The sturdy plastic bins have wide handles for easy access to ingredients, and they can be stacked to save space. You can also use them for toiletries, art supplies, or other small items that keep your space looking tidy.


Problem: A room with too much junk and too few seats

Solution: This ottoman that doubles as a storage solution

Storage baskets are a great addition to any room, but if you’re short on seats, why not solve two problems at once with this storage ottoman? A tufted faux leather seat doubles as the lid for a sturdy box. Use it to conceal books, throws, toys, or anything else that’s cluttering up your room. It takes seconds to assemble and has convenient handles on the side for easy carrying.


Problem: Rugs and carpets that have been marred with pet stains

Solution: A cleaning spray that destroys pet odors

This popular deodorizing carpet spray prevents unwanted pet odors from ruining your floor coverings. It’s made with natural orange oil and can be used directly on cat urine and dog waste for quick cleanup. The spray can also be used on other surfaces including tile, non-leather furniture, and concrete.