Remodeling your kitchen is a significant investment. It can be easy to exceed your budget if you’re not careful. But with careful planning and smart choices, it is possible to get a kitchen you love and stay within your budget. By saving on some items, you can afford to splurge on others.
Thing to Save…
Cabinets – Cabinets account for more than 75 percent of your kitchen space, so they need to look great. Custom, solid-wood cabinets can cost a bundle. But it is possible to find beautiful, quality cabinets at an affordable price. A great compromise is to use ready-to-assemble cabinet boxes with custom doors and side panels. Or go for less ornate cabinet doors and dress them up with high-quality hardware. You can also save money by painting your cabinets rather than staining them or replacing them.
Appliances – Unless you’re a professional chef, you don’t need top-of-the-line, professional-grade appliances. Many mid- and upper-range brands offer great appliances at a reasonable price. Don’t spend money on expensive appliances with fancy features that you won’t use.
Sink – While your sink will get a lot of use and should be durable, it is not necessary to break the bank on one. There are plenty of great options in the mid-range that will perform great and cost significantly less.
Interior cabinet accessories – Cabinet accessories, such as pull-out drawers and organizers, cutlery trays, and under-shelf racks, can be a great addition and make your cabinets more functional. But custom cabinet accessories can be expensive. Instead, consider buying off-the-shelf inserts. The cost will be much lower and you won’t feel as guilty if you decide to replace them later.
Light fixtures – Good lighting is important in the kitchen, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. While you want to make sure you have the right amount and right types of lighting wired, you can save on the actual light fixtures. Many home improvement stores and online stores offer beautiful, stylish light fixtures at reasonable prices.
Flooring – Your kitchen is a high traffic area, so your floor needs to be able to stand up to the foot traffic, spills, and breakages. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune. If you have a large kitchen, flooring can quickly get very expensive. Materials such as reclaimed wood, bamboo, engineered cork, and luxury vinyl are durable, look great, and will stand up to wear and tear while helping you stay within your budget.
Ways to Splurge…
Countertops – Your countertops are the first thing people see and occupy a significant portion of your kitchen surfaces. A quality counter can make a great impression and set the tone for your kitchen. Your counters should also be durable and able to stand up to years of use. Materials like marble, granite, and quartz are all excellent choices that are both durable and beautiful.
Hardware and fixtures – High-quality hardware and fixtures add a great finishing touch and can upgrade the look of your cabinetry. It will also be more durable and hold up better to daily use and abuse than cheaper hardware and fixtures.
Backsplash – Backsplash is a great way to add style and make a big impression without spending a lot. Because the area is relatively small, you won’t need a lot of tile so you can afford to buy a higher quality material without spending a lot.
Faucet – Your kitchen faucet is one of the most-used fixtures in your home, so it needs to be durable. It should also be aesthetically appealing. Pick a faucet you love but don’t skimp on quality. Pull-out models add convenience and make washing dishes easier.
Second sink – Adding a second sink to your kitchen will allow two people to cook and clean at the same time. While an island is the typical location, a second sink could also be added to a wet bar or pantry closet.
Ventilation – Don’t try to save money by skipping the direct vent from the hood exhaust. All those pungent food odors will just get recirculated back into your kitchen. Instead choose a direct vent hood. If your home doesn’t have enough space or an exit point, select the best unvented one you can afford.
Cabinet task lighting – Cabinet task lighting is a great addition to any kitchen. This is a feature you will use every day and it will make tasks much easier. Adding cabinet task lighting later will cost more due to the electrical work required.
Windows – A renovation is the perfect time to add windows, which allow in natural light and add warmth to your kitchen. Invest in quality windows with good hardware.
Layout – Ensure that your final layout is efficient and meets all of your needs. Consider adding extra workspace in the form of an island or add a cozy breakfast nook.
Regardless of what you’re shopping for, be sure to shop around. While it can be time consuming, comparison shopping can result in significant savings. Prices can vary considerably from one store to another for the same item. Also, don’t forget to look beyond the big box stores. Many stores that sell to contractors are open to the public and offer discounts on big purchases and may have products that you won’t find at retail stores.