There's absolutely nothing wrong with doing up a house so you can sell it on at a profit – many successful businesses have been founded to do just that. However, it's a process that can easily get away from you if you don't know what you're doing.

We've all seen programmes like DIY SOS and Changing Rooms that focus on helping people who have started trying to improve their home but have run into trouble for whatever reason somewhere along the way. With a bit of luck and planning, you won't ever have to apply to go on these programmes.

In terms of interior decoration tips, the best thing you can do before you start knocking through walls is to plan exactly what you're going to do (distinguishing between anything that actually needs to be done and anything that you'd quite like done) and what sort of budget you're going to need to achieve your aims. Once you've done that, don't be tempted to start adding and taking things away – think carefully about what you need and then stick to the plan, as many projects have gone awry due generally to unstructured planning and a poor building/decorating process.

It's also important to decide on what sort of style you want to bring into the house – with so many out there, you need to ideally choose one definitive style and work it in throughout the whole of the home. Although two or three styles may work in combination with each other, it can be very difficult to match them up in a satisfactory way. Unless you've appointed an experienced and creative interior decorator to do it for you, it's probably best to stay within the lines of Mediterranean or African themes rather than trying to smash them together.

An element of decoration that is often overlooked is the addition of home and office plants. These come in many forms and can significantly brighten up a room, especially if they are alive and fresh. However, there are companies that supply replica plants for a variety of clients that obviously don't have to be replaced every few days but won't affect anyone with allergies, and are ultimately no less effective in terms of making a real difference to the room and home as a whole.