(Last modified on March 9th, 2020)
Looking for man cave ideas on a budget? Look no further. I completely understand why you’d need to stay in a budget. With money always getting tighter these days, we have to really make our money last. Even if you have a nice big bank account, it’s money-smart to save on your materials. What better way to keep your account balance high than to spend a little less of it than you need to? Plus, keeping stuff on a budget helps you plan for the long term. As you already read in this article, true man caves take a long time to build, and spacing out your budget helps you add to the cave. In any case, there are a million good reasons to look for man cave ideas on a budget, and here are some of the best ideas for spending less that I’ve ever seen.
The best and brightest idea among the man cave ideas on a budget is…building the man cave yourself! Of course, if you have a spare basement, garage, small room, or exterior shed, then you can skip this step already. Otherwise, it’s much more efficient to build your own man cave. Contracting a job out costs money. If you want to save that cash, spend your time building instead. You also get to select your own shed plans, materials, and amenities for the room. The only thing you should absolutely contract out is plumbing installation and wiring. Both of these are damaging and dangerous when done incorrectly, so you’ll want an expert on the job. You can learn more about saving money and building your own shed on this page.
Want to know the cheapest way to get furniture? Go to an estate sale. You can get pretty good furniture for very cheap. Browsing an antique store, looking for deals on Amazon (some of which I list on my post here), or learning how to do your own woodworking literally cuts down on the amount of cash you spend. There is one quick and easy way to get the best deals on furniture. First, you need to learn how to reupholster furniture. Yes, that sounds like a lot, but I promise it’s a simple task. After that, you can turn almost any old thing into a piece of furniture that looks brand new and matches any theme that you desire. That’s among one of the best man cave ideas on a budget!
Other ways to quickly personalize this cheap stuff is to look for ‘parts’ of what you want. You might like the lampshade of one lamp, but the lamp stand of another—if buying both is cheaper than buying a new one that matches the theme, then go ahead and grab them! You can easily combine the two on your own time. This extends to all kinds of decorations in the man cave, even beyond furniture!
Do you have a specific man cave to decorate, but don’t have any man cave ideas on a budget that work for it? Here are some ideas to help you out with a man cave garage, basement, small room, or shed. Each room has its own weaknesses that you have to account for while decorating. While these ideas can be applied to all sorts of man caves, they shine best in these particular environments.
A quick and easy man cave idea is to take up space with a display cabinet. Not only does it draw the eyes to it—and away from the more empty areas of the room—it helps you highlight some of the best features of your man cave. Since basement walls tend to be…bland, to put it nicely…an accent wall will go a long way. Rather than painting (which I recommend for small rooms down below), you can use heavier materials like wood and brick to give your basement some much-needed texture. Cloths also help you keep the man cave unique. You can hide ugly wiring behind it (so long as the wires are safely laid out and at no risk for fraying).
Another good way to spend less money in the long run is to hook up the air ventilation system to your man cave. Yes, it will take you more gas or electricity to heat up in the winter, but it will also keep pests out and prevent your electronics from degrading at a faster rate.
Like a man cave basement, you want to hook up the ventilation system to any man cave you build in the garage. Unlike the basement, you should go the extra mile and insulate everything you can in the room. This keeps the conditioned air in and pests like snakes, centipedes, spiders, and frogs out. Oh, and scorpions, if you live in the south. Those things suck, so don’t forget this step.
One thing interesting about a man cave garage is that it serves as a unique location for greenery. You should probably put in a window or door to the outside (both for safety and for lighting), then set your plant in front of it. The temperature gradient of the room will be more natural, plus the plant will do a good job filtering harmful chemicals out of the air. If you’re a smoker, this is especially helpful. Just don’t smoke so much that you kill the plant.
Bookcases and shelves add busy space to your shed, allows you to store belongs—erm, I mean display them without spending anything on new stuff—and keeps the room from looking empty. The more three-dimensional space your shed has, the better, and shelves contribute greatly to that. Since sheds have limited space, consider making rolling walls, furniture, shelves, and so on. This allows you to customize your man cave according to your current need without taking up extra space. In less than five minutes, your home movie theatre can convert to a wet bar complete with bar stools. Big stuff or stuff that needs a steady footing, such as a pool table, isn’t meant for this type of approach. However, it’s well worth considering!
If you’re looking for a quick and easy way for your man cave to have an impact, paint an accent wall. Paint is one of the cheapest (over time) decorations you can do for any room in the house. If you take the time to build a stencil, you can make a custom wallpaper-esque design that matches the theme of your man cave perfectly.
If your room has a closet, make sure to use that space. Remove the door from the hinges or decorate it with something useful—cloth, pegboards, man cave signs, and other decor all work. Set up a workspace, entertainment zone, or something similar for the closet. Avoid using it as pure storage space as much as you can. This not only adds space to your man cave, but also adds functionality. And, as we all know, true man caves need functionality to measure up to the best of them. Read more about making the best man caves on this page.
One more big thing you can do to quickly and cheaply make a small man cave look good is to add mirrors. Mirrors give off the illusion of space in your room, along with lighting it up more. Most importantly, these cheap little pieces of glass take up design space at a minimal cost. Light is particularly useful in making a room look large. It gives your brain the impression that there is far more surface area in the room than a dimly lit room ever could. It’s mostly psychological, but it works, and wall lights are cheap.
Want some specific ideas for cheap man cave stuff? Well, you might want to go with one particular theme that turns cheap stuff into a room that looks amazing. Rustic man caves are so popular because they are so affordable. I go over the reasoning for this on my full Rustic Man Cave Ideas page, but for now, all you need to know is that simple stuff has a small price tag. Rustic themes, which draw directly from nature and keep things simple, take very little money to populate with decor. A simple glass jar with a pine cone in it would be considered an acceptable and even aesthetic decoration in a Rustic man cave (and, let’s be honest, would probably help keep our man smells at bay for any guests that visit).
Stuff made of straw, simple cloth, furniture with natural cotton or leather materials, and wooden flooring or walls all look spectacular in the rustic man cave. You can find decorations like this for one or two dollars at almost any crafting store. Just try to avoid the old ladies looking for their crochet materials and you’ll have no problem finding something cheap, simple, and good for your man cave budget. Other good things to throw in your rustic man cave are simple pillows, wood-framed posters, plain canvas paintings, shelves, candles, and even some non-conventional stuff like benches or exterior furnishing. Along with that, the more photos you have displayed, the better. Rustic rooms tell a story of the past, and photographs multiply that factor ten-fold…even if the pictures are just of your fishing trip from two years ago or your dream car.
Still looking for man cave ideas on a budget? Check out my article here and see if it helps you. In the meantime, this article hopefully has you all set with good man cave ideas on a budget. Your man cave may not be glamorous in the end, but it’s not about glamour. It’s about utility and making your own little sanctuary. If you can manage that, then you’ve managed to make a true man cave on a budget. Good luck out there!