There are two places to spend money when remodeling that will add instant value to a home: the kitchen and the bathroom. However, remodeling can quickly run into tens of thousands of dollars. Follow these kitchen remodeling tips to save money, increase equity, and get the most bang for your buck.
Refinishing, Refacing, or Replacing Cabinets
Kitchen cabinets can be one of the most expensive items to replace in a kitchen. To the naked eye, most people can’t tell the difference between a solid wood cabinet and one that has a veneer front. Instead, splurge on functionality. Soft close drawers, a well-placed pantry, and solid sides and shelves are a few items that will pay off on resale and make a kitchen function better.
Instead of replacing the cabinets, look into refinishing or refacing cabinet doors. Refinishing involves sanding or stripping the old doors and cabinet faces, then repainting or restraining to bring a fresh new look to the kitchen. Refacing a cabinet means to actually replace the “face” of the cabinet (doors and drawers) with new ones. While this option is more expensive than refinishing, if cabinets are solid wood, this might save thousands of dollars over replacing cabinets entirely.
Stone, Laminate, or Cement Countertops
This area is where prices can skyrocket. However, if given the budget, a stone countertop can add endless beauty and resale value to a home. Cement counters can also make a bold statement. Just remember, style is subjective, so for resale, stick with a more neutral palate.
If a budget is tight, consider adding a stone remnant to an island, or stay with a less expensive laminate and add pops of color and style with stools, furniture, or a backsplash.
Cabinet handles, pulls, and knobs are known as the “jewelry” of the kitchen. These inexpensive items can make a real change in a kitchen that needs a little facelift. Changing out cabinet hardware is a fast, easy, and often less expensive solution that can change the look of a kitchen in a few hours.
With tile stores now carrying thousands of varieties of tiles, a kitchen can come to life and make a statement with a well thought out backsplash. Style, variety, and cost can vary greatly, so remember that when choosing and installing a backsplash.
Keep the budget and priorities in mind when deciding where to spend renovation money. Expensive items such as structural changes to walls or relocating plumbing or mechanical systems can quickly add up to thousands of dollars. Be firm when deciding which changes are being made; endless changes can cost extra money. Finally, go visit showrooms to get a sense of the style wanted for a kitchen.
The kitchen is the heart of the home, so taking some time to do research before making any changes can be a smart move.