Change holiday decorations on budget

HOUSTON - If you're tired of hanging the same decorations year after year, there are ways to spruce up your decorations without busting your budget.

"Finances are something we are always aware of, but we love our home and we love to entertain. We want it to look nice and be warm and friendly and welcoming," Amy Sailing said.

Bringing in an interior designer, if only for a consultation, is a great way to get ideas on how to get a new look for less.

"You pay them to have them there for an hour. It's not as expensive, but a great way to get a fresh eye," said Angie Hicks, the founder of Angie's List.

Some designers have suggested using apothecary jars and vases, which can be found almost anywhere -- even at dollar stores.

If you're tired of your decorations, some of your friends and relatives may feel the same way about theirs. You may want to consider organizing a decoration swap.

If you need help with hanging your lights, there are many companies out there -- like landscapers, roofers and handymen -- who will put them up, take them down and store them for you.

"Pay to have the lights hung and then pay separately to have the lights taken down," Hicks said. "Sometimes, we've heard stories where people have paid everything upfront and they never showed up to take the lights down."

If you hire a company to hang your lights, be certain that it is insured in case one of its workers gets hurt on your property.

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