$40 to $40,000: Home Gyms for Every Budget

Amanda Bell
Written by Amanda Bell
Updated July 25, 2016
home gym
Your home gym may or may not include pricey pieces of equipment. (Photo by Summer Gaylan)

Whether you have $40 or $40,000, use this list to create a home gym with everything from resistance bands to saunas.

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You sign up for a gym membership with the best of intentions, but, let’s face it, sometimes you just never make it there.

Don’t let inconvenience or lack of motivation be what’s keeping you from sticking to a fitness routine. Whether you can only spring for a small set of dumbbells to store in a spare room or can afford to splurge on a basement remodel including luxurious health club amenities, creating an at-home workout space can encourage you to stick to an exercise plan.

Use this list for ideas on building a home gym with any budget.

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$40 or less

For a minimal investment, you can start with the basics in any room on the lowest level of your home or in the garage.

“You can buy a resistance band for $10 at the store and get a set of small dumbbells for $1 to $2 a pound on Craigslist,” says Mark Hedegore, nutritionist and owner of Live Fit Personal Training + Nutrition in Westlake, Ohio. Round out your workout wares with a balance ball, foam rollers for muscle tension relief and jump rope.  

Pro tip: Get creative! Items you may already have around the house can double as exercise equipment. For example, you can fill empty water bottles or milk jugs with water for a quick set of light hand weights.

$400 or less

If you have a little more to spare, add a suspension trainer, BOSU (both sides up) ball, foot sliders and kettlebells to your fitness room. To get your workout regimen off to a running start, you can also hire a personal trainer, whose services average between $55 to $120 per session, says Brian Goode, personal trainer and owner of Be Goode Fitness in Gaithersburg, Maryland, who often helps clients set up at-home workout spaces.

Pro tip: Not sure what you need? Many personal trainers perform coaching sessions at your home and bring a basic set of exercise gear. Try what works for you, then buy.

$4,000 or less

Step up your home gym with a commercial treadmill, elliptical trainer, stair stepper machine or stationary bike. With an even bigger budget, you can also load your workout room with a full set of dumbbells, resistance bands and an adjustable bench.

Pro tip: With all that heavy lifting and sweating, protect your floors with rubber tiles, which range from $3 to $25 for each 2-foot square tile.

$40,000 or more

Anything you’d find in a high-end health club makes fair game for a complete home gym makeover, says David McDonald, owner of Raymac Remodeling in Cumming, Georgia. Must-haves include enough space for one or two commercial-grade exercise machines, wall-mounted flatscreens, wall-to-wall mirrors and surround sound with MP3 hookups so you can blast your favorite workout soundtrack.

If you want to give your home gym that extra “wow” factor, splurge on a sauna, built-ins to store towels and a small kitchen area with a mini-fridge, ice machine and a blender station to whip up post-workout smoothies.

Pro tip: Any home gym remodel at this price point should start with stained concrete and commercial-grade rubber mats on the floor and adequate support beams on the ceilings for any heavy pieces of equipment mounted there, such as pull-up bars or punching bags.

What piece of equipment would you consider a necessity in your home gym? Tell us your ideas in the comments section below.

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