Get New Baseboards In Your Home For Half The Price With TikTok's DIY

Baseboards do more than improve the appearance of any room by creating a smooth transition from wall to floor — they're also essential for protecting your walls. They shield the lower part of your walls from everyday damage like scuffs from brooms and vacuums, not to mention the knocks and scratches from furniture and toys. They're also great for preventing moisture damage from things like spills or when you're mopping. But keep in mind, while they're super useful, baseboards can get a bit pricey, especially when you're covering a large area — and don't forget to add the cost to install the baseboard if you want it done by someone else. Because of the high expense that comes with installing baseboards, TikTok user @diamondintherough._comes in with a clever money-saving hack. Rather than buying precut strips that measure ½ x 4 ½ x 96 inches, she recommends purchasing a large ½ x 49 x 97-inch MDF sheet. Then, sand the top parts, prime them, and paint them before installing them on your walls.

Here's where the savings come in: each precut strip costs about $6.68, but the large sheet is priced around $30.77. You can make 12 strips of baseboard and trim from this one sheet, leading to substantial savings. You can save around $50 from buying a sheet compared to purchasing 12 individual precut strips. 

Issues with the half the price baseboard hack

This cost-saving hack from @diamondintherough._ might be a game-changer, but it's essential to be aware of some practical considerations. While purchasing a large MDF sheet from Home Depot and having the shop cut it into 4-inch strips sounds great, users have raised some valid concerns. While it's true that some Home Depot branches offer woodcutting services, they typically make only a certain number of cuts for free and may charge for additional ones. Furthermore, several users noted that Home Depot might not cut pieces smaller than 12 inches for safety reasons. Before you commit to this plan, it's wise to check with your local Home Depot if their store has the tools for cutting wood and ask about their woodcutting policies.

Home Depot's service limitation shouldn't stop you from doing the DIY project. If they can't accommodate your needs or if you prefer to handle it yourself, you might want to consider cutting the MDF sheet at home. If you have the right tools, like a circular saw and a guide, this could become a satisfying DIY project where you have complete control over the cutting process. Remember to take all the safety precautions beforehand, of course.

Considerations when using MDF baseboards

While the hack focuses mainly on using MDF baseboards, many other TikTok users reacted negatively in the comment section and said that MDF isn't ideal for baseboards and trims. The material is favored for its affordability, flexibility, lightweight, and softness, making it great for custom cuts and shapes, especially if you want to add a decorative touch to your home. However, MDF also has certain characteristics that make them a bad choice for baseboards.

First off, it's important to be mindful of where you intend to install the boards. Since MDF is prone to moisture absorption, it is not the best choice for areas like bathrooms and kitchens where humidity and water exposure are common. The moisture can cause it to swell and deteriorate over time. It's also less durable than solid wood. Its composition makes it more prone to chipping, so it may not be the best option for high-traffic areas where it's likely to face more wear and tear.