7 Ways to Skimp on a Kitchen Renovation

Who doesn’t love the idea of a brand-spanking-new kitchen filled with gleaming appliances, flawless cabinets and pristine countertops? Kitchen remodeling top homeowner renovation wish lists—and for good reason. Not only do they make daily living more comfortable, but they increase the resale value of your home. Unfortunately, a full kitchen remodel rings up at a premium. Luckily, budget-friendly DIYers can shave substantial dollars off kitchen renovations, and get a new look at a fraction of the cost. Here's a handful of creative ideas for your next project.

By Donna Boyle Schwartz | Updated Nov 16, 2020 12:53 PM

A Pretty Face

How to Redo Kitchen Cabinets

Replacing the kitchen cabinets undoubtedly transforms a kitchen—but it's one of the most costly elements of a renovation. Instead of replacing your cabinets, give them a facelift. Remove the doors, then strip and refinish, or repaint them. If you favor an even more dramatic change, get rid of the cabinet doors entirely to create open shelving.  Then line the back with decorative wallpaper to put your dinnerware on display.

Related:  10 Easy Ways to Update Your Kitchen Cabinets

Zillow Digs home in Sarasota, FL

Light Bright

Under Cabinet Lighting

Old light fixtures can make even the best kitchen look dated. Simply switching out the fixtures can change the look of the room, though. Pick up some stylish pendant lamps to install over a kitchen island or grab some task lighting to fit under your cabinets. No need to shell out hundreds of dollars; a simple self-stick light can go a long way to improving the functionality and feel of a kitchen.

Related:  Hanging By a Thread - 9 Inventive Ways to Hang Pendant Lights

Zillow Digs home in Vero Beach, FL

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Fashion Under Foot

Kitchen Floor

If your hardwood kitchen floors have seen better days, you can give them a second life by refinishing them. Renting a sander and purchasing a stain is a great alternative to putting in a new floor. But if refinishing isn't an option, consider an affordable flooring material like laminate, vinyl, or engineered hardwood. Or, if you're feeling adventurous, try peel and stick tiles or even paint to change the look of your floors without a new install.

Related:  Just Floored! 15 Totally Unexpected DIY Flooring Alternatives


Accent The Positive

Cabinet Knobs

It's all the in the details. Drawer pulls, handles, faucets, and towel racks might seem like small potatoes, but they help contribute to a kitchen's ambiance and function. You can walk into any home improvement store for a variety of options, or try your luck at a local thrift store or Habitat for Humanity ReStore to find reasonably priced fixtures and hardware.

Related:  Knobs of Note - 16 Ideas for a Cool Cabinet


Sink Hole

Kitchen Sink

An old, chipped, or stained sink can make the entire kitchen seem dated and dirty. Luckily, with the right tools changing out the sink is a quick fix. You can find stainless steel or acrylic models for less than $100; or splurge for a porcelain sink for under $500. For an easy install, check the directions before you buy—many sinks simply “drop in” to an existing countertop, making it a great project for even the beginner DIYer.

Related:  Sink Style - 10 New Forms and Functions for 21st-Century Kitchens


Counter Culture

Kitchen Countertops

Changing out the counters can make a kitchen nearly unrecognizable—but that dramatic reveal comes at a price. You can cheat your way to better countertops by painting tile with a special kit and enamel paint, or invest a little more time and energy by creating your own concrete counters. If you'd rather buy than DIY, consider laminates; they're one of the least expensive options and come in an eye-popping array of colors.

Related:  8 Countertops You'd Never Believe Were Handmade


Art For Art’s Sake

Kitchen Art

Freshen your kitchen with some cheap and easy art pieces. Try framing seed packets, vintage kitchen towels, or your child’s artwork to add personality. Or hang everyday items as art—like decorative cutting boards and vintage utensils.

Related:  Kitchen Paint Colors - 10 Handsome Hues for Hardworking Spaces


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