- view all thumbnails
If you're having trouble getting your kitchen dreams to fit your budget, there are things you can do to cut costs. You can scale down your project by doing less construction work and eliminating luxury materials. But by combining hard work and creativity, you can keep more of your wish list intact.
Giving your kitchen a facelift is an option when you're happy with the amount of space you have and the layout of your kitchen, but you want to update the look and durability. This option can involve many projects you may be able to do yourself, saving money in the process.
Refinish Existing Cabinets
For best do-it-yourself results, don't skimp on prep work. Use a high-quality, 100-percent-acrylic finish for the base.
Think About the Essentials
Consider replacing sinks, faucets, lighting, and appliances as part of a total makeover. If these elements are more than 10 years old, they're probably showing signs of wear and may not have some of the convenience, style, and operating features that today's products offer.
Contractors and plumbers often cover their costs by charging list prices for materials. If you buy direct, your costs will be significantly lower. Let those who bid on your projects know which materials you plan to buy.
Research Before You Purchase
The Internet is a great source for bargains. Most big-box stores will special order just about anything from top manufacturers at below list price.
Consider RTA Cabinets
Many ready-to-assemble kitchen cabinets are less expensive than their semicustom counterparts.
The difference between "good," "better," and "best" appliances is often in the bells and whistles. Determine your minimum requirements and which extras you're willing to pay for.
Do Some of the Work Yourself
By acting as your own general contractor, you can save roughly 10-20 percent overall. Just be absolutely sure that you're qualified and that you have the time to oversee every detail of your remodeling.
Make Smart Compromises
If you have to choose between expensive materials and expensive labor, choose the labor. A good craftsman can make even mundane materials look great.
Try our FREE ultimate decorating toolbox to design your kitchen. Imagine it, plan it, then do it with Decorating Inspiration!