Kitchen Makeover on a Tight Budget

Today, I discovered some great ideas to makeover your kitchen creatively and economically.  What’s more appealing, these tips leave room for your own personality and taste, accessibility to different resources, and a variety of design choices depending on your budget.  With the advice given by Designer Genevieve Gorder, of HGTV’s “Dear Genevieve“, here are some simple ways to give your kitchen that much needed face-lift that’s friendly to your wallet.

First, let’s look at common problems most people wish to address:

• Cabinetry/hardware

• Counter-tops

• Floors

• Backsplash

• Ceilings

• Appliances

Now, you might be wondering how to tackle all these problems and keep to a strict budget plan.  It’s doable with these clever solutions:

Cabinetry/hardware: Re-face with marine paint and change out the old with new updated hardware. Marine paint is not only durable, it’s easy to clean.  You can also find inexpensive updated hardware at places like Habitat for Humanity ReStores or Target.

Cost advantage:  New custom cabinets = $6,000-15,000, re-facing = $3,000-5,000. To reduce the budget even more, do it yourself!

Counter-tops: Use butcher block to bring in natural colors and a liveliness often found in granite and marble, but much less expensive. Season your butcher board counter-tops 1-2 times a year to keep them looking new and to prevent them from staining and absorbing food odors and bacteria.

Cost advantage: carrera marble = $120 p/sq. ft., butcher block = $61 p/sq. ft.

• Floors: Install wood laminate flooring. God knows, anything is better than those old sticky linoleum tiles.  Laminate flooring has come a long way with a wide variety of wood grains, colors, and plank widths.  They’re also both economical and durable.

Cost advantage: hardwood = $7-10,000, laminate = $2,000-3,000 (depending on the square footage of your kitchen).

• Back Splash: Subway tiles can be applied to look classic or antique. A great way to integrate a new feature with your current color scheme is white subway tiles.  You can use white grout for a classic look, or black to bring a more antique feel to your kitchen.  With black grout, the advantage is, “dirt or grime” is camouflaged, there is a nice contrast between tiles, and it pops!  Alternatives: find tile on sale to add color that fits your design style.

Cost advantage:  Subway tiles are easy to find, cost-effective, and look great! Check out these listings on DiggersList for other low-cost tile options as well.

• Ceilings: Cover with beadboard to brighten and heighten your kitchen ceiling. Additionally, stains, peeling paint, and/or the dreaded “popcornspray are covered and gone!  Alternatives: faux tin or white ceiling tiles can also be a great updating choice.

Cost Advantage:  because these materials are inexpensive and relatively easy to handle, you can do a DIY install or hire a handyman to complete the job.

• Appliances: Paint or pick-up discounted appliances. First, don’t be afraid of painting your appliances.  Quickly and inexpensively freshen your appliances with specially manufactured spray paints (available at most home improvement stores). NOTE: be sure to buy the specific paint for ovens and cook-tops that take high heat into consideration.

Second, discounted appliances can be found on DiggersList (Habitat for Humanity ReStores), Sears Outlet stores (reconditioned models-previously dented or chipped), or restaurant supply stores. Check for the manufacture’s warranty on all newer appliances.

Cost advantage:  You have a variety of options that can be explored by doing a little research.  Because kitchen appliances are so personal and usually very expensive, take the time to see what’s out there…you’d be surprised!

So, unlike Joan Rivers, with these clever ideas, you won’t have to pay a fortune for this face-lift (ba-dum-bump!).  With a little research, and a close eye on your budget, you can make your kitchen makeover dreams come true.  Bon appetite!

Skaie Knox

Written by Skaie Knox

Decor nerd, design enthusiast and the Editor-in-Chief/Writer for HomeJelly and co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Dwellingz, a real estate home story-telling website. Skaie is also a published singer/songwriter and kids book author, voted "Class Clown", and rescue dogs crusader. If you're in the market for a new home, or just want to learn the "inside scoop" on Los Angeles real estate, click onto her photo and read her home tours and stories at www.dwellingz.com.

Conversation

  1. VegasMommy on June 3, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    Great ideas! Just a quick FYI. Concrete counter tops are a great way to create distinctive tops for kitchen cabinets and islands, etc. Prepared, colored and finished, a concrete countertop looks like natural stone – way less expensive. ($50-100 per sq ft) If you make this a DIY project – count on it to become a conversation piece for anyone who sees it.

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