It is no secret that a kitchen remodel provides one of the best returns on investment, neck-and-neck with the master bathroom. But many homeowners wonder: at what point do you make your money back on kitchen upgrades? The ROI threshold for a kitchen remodel is highly variable, one that depends on personal goals and your specific market. And, you’ll also be happy to know, there are some smart tips for kitchen remodeling on a budget you can benefit from!
However, before even starting a kitchen remodel, you should consider if you are in your forever home or plan to move in less than five years. Also, don’t neglect to look at comparable houses in your neighborhood during the planning phase so you can allocate sufficient funds to this home improvement project. Note what level of finishes they use as well as the level of customization and layouts.
In either case, it is wise to pay careful attention to the budget to maximize your kitchen remodel’s ROI. Lucky for you, we’ve learned a few cost-saving tips on our house flipping journey that may help you keep line items in check.
How to Save Money on a Kitchen Remodel
The best way you can save money in a kitchen remodel is through DIY-ing demo, ordering your own materials and, if you have the contacts, subcontracting out installs yourself.
Aside from that, the most achievable way to capitalize on saving opportunities is through careful planning on these big-ticket items:
Our Top 7 Tips for Kitchen Remodeling on a Budget
1. Save When Purchasing Kitchen Cabinets
Box stores like Home Depot & Lowes sell cabinets, and sometimes carry them in stock. Personally, we haven’t been impressed with the quality of their standard cabinet boxes, so there’s a sacrifice in the quality you will need to consider. Another option is trying Cabinet’s To-Go, a second-hand shop, or visiting your local kitchen showroom. If the only thing the showroom has to do is place the order, they may be willing to negotiate on price. Our favorite cabinet vendor is CNC Cabinets.
Worst case, there’s always the option to preserve the existing cabinets and update the countertop, backsplash, and hardware! Check out the example below of how we updated the existing wood cabinets in a budget kitchen remodel.
2. Budget-Friendly Cabinet Layouts
Depending on how you prioritize a kitchen’s functionality vs. cost, you can make some decisions in the planning phase that will save money right off the bat. Galley kitchen designs create the least amount of wasted space, but your layout may not allow for that. If you must work with a corner, the options for non-custom cabinetry are often limited to a blind or a space-eating corner cabinet. Creating a blind is the most budget-friendly option, although not the most visually appealing.
When selecting cabinets, remember that a bank of drawers is significantly more expensive than a cabinet door base. That being said, we suggest accounting for at least one drawer bank in your kitchen design.
You can also achieve a high-end look at a fraction of the price by wrapping an island or peninsula in wood trim and painting it an accent color.
BONUS: Save Big with Floating Shelves
Selective use of floating shelves in place of wall cabinets is a solid money saver, although they many not be quite as functional. I love them purely because of their potential for styling!
3. Cost-Saving Backsplash Ideas
A backsplash can break the bank if you aren’t careful, but it may be where you want to splurge. The good news is you can go without a backsplash for a while, giving yourself time to save for what you actually want. Plus, there are tons of videos on DIY kitchen backsplashes to save on install costs.
However, if you’d rather just be done with the job, white subway tile is your best bet. You can always mix things up with the layout: a herringbone, grid, or vertical layout. (I have a whole Pinterest board dedicated to this) Our favorite tile is by Daltile, found at Home Depot, and runs about $0.15 per tile.
4. How to Save on Hardware & Lighting
We can’t neglect a kitchen’s jewelry: hardware & lighting. You better believe there are budget-friendly options out there. As much as I love supporting small businesses, it must be said that Amazon’s hardware prices can’t be beaten. There you will find my go-to kitchen pull-in matte black and simple, classic knob. I also have a whole list of lights, most of which are dining/kitchen pendants.
5. Budget-Friendly Countertops: Remnant Granite, Quartz, or Marble
This is probably my favorite tip for saving money in your kitchen remodel, but it involves a little leg work. Look for small local granite suppliers in the area, visit their shop and see if they have any remnant pieces left over from other jobs. If your kitchen is small to medium in size there’s a good chance you will find a partial slab of granite, quartz, or marble – at least something you can live with. Don’t be afraid to negotiate on the remnant, either!
6. Re-think the Island
One option to save some coin is to do a free-standing table in place of island cabinets, creating an eat-in kitchen. We’ve used this idea in both the Dennis the Menace and Stud-ly Flip.
7. Save on Flooring
It’s difficult to allocate this line item to just a kitchen remodel – since flooring in one space often affects others. Sometimes if there are hardwood floors throughout the home except for the kitchen, and budget is an issue, then LVT is a solid option.
Try setting up a wholesale account at a supply house! Recently, we found an LVP product by Cali Bamboo and we couldn’t love it more. In fact, this flooring is now a standard for our new construction and flip projects.
Hopefully, these tips for kitchen remodeling on a budget help you not overspend and empower you to manage your kitchen renovation, save money, and help you accomplish your goals for one of the most significant investments you can make – in your own home!
Until Next Time…
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