Kitchen Remodeling on a Dime

by Jane VanOsdol on July 7, 2011

If updating your kitchen has been on your wish list for a long time, but you just haven’t had the budget to do it, don’t lose hope. Instead, explore the following home improvements that won’t break the bank but will break the monotony of an outdated kitchen space. Let’s consider a few economical updates that pack a big bang for the buck.

Add an island. If extra workspace is what you’re craving, you can easily add that with a portable island. You’ll be happy at how inexpensive this kitchen home improvement can be. For example, World Market lists several islands on their Web site ranging from $115 up to $320. You’ll have extra workspace, storage and possibly seating if you purchase an island with an overhang for a small breakfast bar—all for less than $400.

Add a butcher-block top. For an additional permanent workspace, why not replace the small countertop area between your range and refrigerator with a butcher-block top? You’ll make this often overlooked area much more functional, and what more convenient space for slicing and dicing could you find then right next to the stove? And for such a small space, the butcher block will be fairly inexpensive.

Swap out your kitchen cabinet hardware. Changing out your cabinet hardware can help update the look of the cabinets even if you can’t replace them. If you’re really feeling ambitious, paint your cabinets for a totally new look.

Go for a backsplash. There’s nothing like a new backsplash to brighten up a tired space. And, it doesn’t have to be expensive, either. From inexpensive tile to tin, a backsplash can breathe new life into and create a focal point for your kitchen.

Hunt for the bargains. If you have a builder-grade fixture in your kitchen that is driving you crazy, such as a cheap sink, keep your eyes open for a bargain find. Look for garage sales, at flea markets and on Craig’s List for the find you’d love to replace it with.

Pay attention to details. Sometimes all you need for your kitchen remodel is to complete the look with some finishing details. Add a few potted plants, some artwork or a couple of colorful throw rugs to complete the look.

Add a message center. Are you trying to keep track of a multitude of family members coming and going? Why not replace the facing on one or two of your cabinet doors with chalkboard? Your family can easily scribble a message for you before they leave.

Support a good cause. Shop a Habitat for Humanity ReStore for your building materials and supplies. ReStores are stocked with donated appliances, building materials and fixtures at a fraction of the price for what you’d pay for them new. Your purchase will be helping to put a family into a new home too.

Your kitchen remodeling project doesn’t have to blow your budget. With some ingenuity and smart shopping, you can update your kitchen and still have enough money for the groceries to put in it!

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