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Easy Home Makeovers 

3 Life-Changing Room Makeovers

Moved by reader stories of cluttered spaces causing family fights, Real Simple extends the olive branch—tackling an overrun basement, an overstuffed closet, and a chaotic teen’s room. And proving once and for all that in the right surroundings, everyone really can get along. 

The Palutis family basement before makeover
Jonny Valiant

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The Palutis Family Basement: Before

With a bare bulb, a stained concrete floor, and no real shelving, the uninviting basement was a dumping ground for bulky toys—many past their prime—and “weird man junk from Michael’s bachelor days,” according to Nancy: flags, license plates, and record albums.

Found In (and Tossed From) the Palutis Basement
- 1 box of tube lighting
- 1 sheet of paneling
- 3 pickup truck–loads of toys (including a dollhouse and a cardboard castle), donated to kids in Nicaragua
- 5 old area rugs
- 4 boxes of blinds