Buck The Trends
The prices of finish materials—tile, carpet, fabric, or wallpaper—are subject to flavor-of-the-moment fads. "I often see stacks of tiles that are beautiful, but they're on sale for cheap because there's been a shift in color trends," says Mark Clement, a Philadelphia contractor and host of the MyFixItUpLife radio show. "But if the tile is an earthy tone or the wallpaper has a simple pattern, it will still be a solid choice." Neon brights and oversize prints, on the other hand, don't always stand the test of time and can look dated.