My husband and I are not millionaires, we are not even in the middle class, we fall somewhere in between broke and just getting by. When we were first married, we both coached gymnastics. We only had enough money in our accounts to pay rent and buy some groceries. We lived paycheck to paycheck. Who am I foolin’? We STILL live paycheck to paycheck! I never thought we would ever be able to buy a house. I didn’t think hardwood floors and black front doors were in our future, and I was OKAY with that. We had a beautiful daughter and another on the way. Life was great! Then the panic set in. How will we all fit in a 2 bedroom apartment?? But then the economy took a turn, and, although it was hard on everyone, this worked in our favor as we could now afford a 3 bedroom house! We searched high and low and we got outbid over and over. Every house was in shambles, I mean TRASHED! The only houses we could afford were in a very unsafe neighborhood, were bank owned and they needed complete overhauls…*sigh*. Then, a wonderfully amazing and exciting thing happened! We found a house in Castle Rock, CO. A safe neighborhood. A neighborhood filled with charm and family friendly EVERYTHING! It was a regular sale. It was a cool old house with lots of character. It had hardwood floors!! Oh no, it only has one bathroom…but it has hardwood floors!!! We bought it. After a closer look those wonderful hardwood floors were actually in really bad shape. Some were splintering, some were pushing up, there were paint drips and old, dried nail polish everywhere. They looked like they hadn’t been done in 50 years! And the windows were single pane, aluminum framed pieces of crap! They rattled when the wind blew and had ZERO energy efficiency. Ok, so this house needed some work. So, with our very first tax return as homeowners (which was not as big as I thought it might be, guess I was misinformed) we replaced the windows! Yay!! And wow….home remodeling is wicked expensive! I’ve always been pretty thrifty and I hate paying full price for anything, which made the window bill a hard pill to swallow. I’m an amazing decorator full of ideas and I have a great eye for design. So I have resolved to update our cute, albeit tiny, house with little to no money! I don’t need no stinkin’ contractors and big box stores! How? Craigslist and Goodwill, of course!