Renovating a kitchen is expensive. If you don’t have the budget, you can still use these cheap ways to update your kitchen without breaking the bank or busting out the hammer.
While we all might have visions of our dream kitchen dancing in our head or multiple images pinned to a Pinterest board—doing a full-scale renovation might not be in the budget at the moment. But that doesn’t mean that there’s nothing you can do. Hitch Property Constructions has an extensive range of kitchen renovation Melbourne to take the hassle out of deciding the right furniture that matches.
Ways to improve your kitchen without renovations
Here are a few easy ways to update your kitchen—no remodelling necessary.
Paint the walls
One of the easiest and least expensive ways to refresh your kitchen is to give it a fresh coat of paint. Changing the colour can give you a whole new atmosphere and mood. You may find this article about the best shades of paint if you’re selling your home comes in handy because these are also the favourite shade for new home buyers as well as people who plan to live in their homes a while.
And, if you’re looking for a shade of grey, check out this article about The most popular shades of grey paint. It also includes how to coordinate with a darker grey accent wall.
And, if you’re planning to paint yourself, here are some tools I’d recommend as they will make your job easier. The products below can be found on Amazon and delivered straight to your door.
- Painting brush – this one costs a bit more, but it’s totally worth it. It will help you paint faster and more accurately. If you’re going to paint yourself, don’t skimp here. Incidentally, this is Amazon’s Choice as well.
- Painter’s tape – a must-have. Use for all the trim as well as ceiling area.
- Paint roller kit – this includes a tray. Use the brush for the edges and the roller for main areas of the wall (and ceiling).
- Drop cloths – Yes, you’ll need them for sure. Some people have some on hand, but often not enough if you are doing many rooms.
Replace the hardware on the cabinets
This is another inexpensive product that can make a big difference, especially if cabinet handles are dated. And, if you’re a do-it-yourselfer, it’s a pretty easy job. Cool colours are in, so that means brushed nickel (or else chrome). Most prefer brushed nickel as it looks nicer and coordinates better with stainless steel appliances. Brushed nickel costs a bit more, but in my opinion, it’s worth it, especially since this is a small investment.
INSTALL NEW FLOORING
There’s so many options these days when it comes to flooring, so don’t immediately jump to labour intensive tile or brand new hardwood.
If you don’t like your current kitchen floor (hello ancient linoleum!), then an easy DIY option like luxury vinyl is the way to go and can get take your kitchen from drab to fab in a weekend.
Stick to the existing kitchen layout
This will reduce your costs considerably – moving cupboards, plumbing, walls, electrics and so on starts to get into big money. And the more you can do yourself, the more you’ll save.
Get some new lighting, especially pendant lighting
Lighting can really brighten your space and add some design flair. And, good lighting can also make your space look larger. Soon, I’m going to do a whole article on pendant lighting.
Lights and light switches play a big role in how bright and welcome a kitchen feels. That’s why, as a general rule, warm lighting is better in kitchens, notes Davis.
Avoid overly dim lighting in favor of a brighter, warmer, more welcoming feel. Also consider swapping out the light favour panels, which should match the hardware and overall feel of the kitchen well.
Shopping around for new light fixtures and light switches is easy at most home improvement stores, and you can even compare prices online.
Finding an expensive lighting fixture you love in a magazine, then looking for a cheaper lookalike (or full lighting set) in a big box store.
I’ve staged million-dollar house dining rooms using lights from Lowe’s. No one ever suspected it was something other than top of the line.
Switch Out the Hardware
You won’t believe how quick and easy it is to give your old, outdated hardware a refresh. Warm-up your finishes with a brass option in a sleek, modern shape. This will instantly make your kitchen look on-trend, but it won’t cost a fortune to achieve. Check out our range of kitchen renovation at Hitch Property Constructions.
Jazz things up with new paint and new curtains.
An interior design consultant says never to underestimate the effect of a new coat of paint and new curtains to match.
Changing the colours will always feel like a huge change — and it is. It will be a refreshing new look for the room and the only thing needed is paint.
Not only does painting offer a cost-effective way to make a huge, sweeping change to your room, but you can probably do the labour yourself, too. Doing the bulk of the grunt work for your paint job can save you even more money.
Curtains can also make a surprisingly big difference. It’s necessary to change your kitchen curtains from time to time as they absorb all smells and smoke. Upgrading them and matching them to the new colours in the kitchen will make it feel like a new room, as will splurging for a few matching accent rugs, pictures, or décor.
Pay for new appliances, but go with the basic brands.
New appliances can definitely make your kitchen feel newer, but the added expense can send your kitchen remodelling budget into a tailspin in a hurry.
You can save a bundle by avoiding the fancy designer kitchen brands and going with whatever is available on sale at your local hardware store. If you’re brave, you may even want to consider buying used appliances cast off during someone else’s kitchen update.
Appliance sales happen several times a year, usually during major holidays. Check out department and box stores to save up to 40% off retail. You can also shop classifieds on Facebook and Craigslist for used appliances.
Re-use your appliances
If your appliances are still okay, then re-use them, and before you throw the kitchen sink away, give it a good going over with a gentle abrasive cleaner, then spend the money you save on a new tap!
REPLACE THE COUNTER TOPS AND SINK
One of the grossest parts of our kitchen, when we moved in, was our off-white laminate countertops. I had dreamed of an all-white kitchen for a long time, but this was not exactly the vision I had in mind.
With a limited budget to update our 80s kitchen, my dream marble-like quartz countertops were not going to happen. Instead, we opted to install new faux soapstone laminate countertops from Wilsonart. Our kitchen has a huge span of counter space, and we still came in under budget.
Whether you need a short-term upgrade until you can fully remodel in a few years or a more affordable option for your current remodel, laminate countertops have come a long way. They are a great budget alternative to the pricier stone and manufactured options.
Looking for kitchen renovation Melbourne? Look no further? Hitch Property Constructions has you covered.
Shop for budget countertops.
While most full kitchen remodels inevitably require new upscale countertops, you can easily save on this expense simply by shopping around. If you’re keeping your old cabinets and simply refreshing them, it may even be the perfect time to rip out and replace the countertops you have.
Shopping for new stone countertops at discount granite shops or home improvement stores instead of with a designer. She bought brand new granite countertops for less than half the price of what she would have paid elsewhere just by shopping at Lowe’s during one of their big annual sales.
Also consider other options like resin, which can be put atop an existing laminate counter, or concrete.
Replacing or covering existing counters with wooden butcher’s block. They’re much cheaper and will age gracefully if cared for. Round out the look with a matching wooden dish rack and wine rack. Add a bottle of two of stuffy-looking French wine, and it’s a whole new look.
The right countertops for your specific kitchen depend on your existing cabinetry, style, and budget. Still, you can save a bundle by keeping your mind open to different materials, comparing prices, and setting up the installation yourself. Meanwhile, you may also save additional funds if you’re willing to remove your old countertops yourself versus paying an installer to do the demo work.
Update (don’t replace) your kitchen cabinets.
While the focus of any kitchen remodelling project usually involves installing brand new kitchen cabinets, you don’t have to fork over tens of thousands of dollars for new cabinets if your current set is in good shape.
If they’re solid wood especially, a few simple upgrades can make your kitchen cabinets look a lot better – and more up-to-date than they do now.
According to real estate expert, simple (and cost-effective) cabinet upgrades to consider include:
Cabinet pulls: Any kitchen cabinets can be updated by replacing the hinges, knobs, and pulls with contemporary hardware.
Sanding and restaining: Wood cabinets that are sanded and restained to get rid of oily stains, scratches, and a colour that doesn’t fit your design scheme become vibrant components of your low-cost, high-appeal kitchens.
A new paint job: If stained natural wood isn’t the look you prefer, then sand the cabinets and paint them in a colour that appeals to you. While a lot of people choose fancy colour schemes for the cabinets, bright white kitchen cabinets can create a clean and updated look in any kitchen.
Paint the cabinets
If you have those dated oak cabinets and you want to change them, paint them. It’s a great way to do a kitchen makeover without spending a fortune. It will do wonders for your space and save you a lot of money. And, importantly, it’s a much faster process vs installing new cabinets and countertops. (Yes, when you replace your cabinets, it becomes a domino effect, and you usually need to replace your countertop, sink and backsplash at the same time, and you need a plumber too, so the costs rapidly increase, and you can be without a usable kitchen for many weeks.)
Most people are choosing white (although grey is the 2nd most popular colour). Not only will this update your kitchen, but it will lighten and brighten it, so it looks larger. You will be amazed by the impact.
Add roll-out kitchen shelves.
If you skip the new kitchen cabinets but still want the feel and improved functionality of a new kitchen, adding some newer upgrades to your existing cabinets can offer a big bang for your buck. Darla DeMorrow of Heartwork Organizing is big on adding roll-out shelving to kitchens that need better organization and more room.
Roll-out shelving units are typically around $100 each, says DeMorrow, but they give you back precious square feet of otherwise lost kitchen cabinet space. They can also make existing cabinets more usable for people with mobility issues, says DeMorrow.
Upgrade to a fancy kitchen faucet.
Nothing downgrades the look of a kitchen quicker than an old, leaky faucet. Even if yours isn’t quite leaking yet, a shiny new faucet is like a beautiful piece of jewellery in your kitchen.
Changing out an old, ugly kitchen faucet can give your kitchen a more updated look — and it can also improve your kitchen’s functionality since new faucets tend to have features that make cooking and cleaning easier.
For example, the increased height of newer faucets makes filling pots and washing big pots and pans a much simpler task.
For an especially modern look, you can also consider changing out the finish to something trendy like brushed brass or black, or go with easy to clean stainless steel.
ADD A KITCHEN RUNNER
A runner in front of a long span of cabinets is a nice way to break up your flooring and add some colour to your space. Even if you can’t afford to replace your floors, you can disguise them – or at least distract from them – with a pretty runner.
Add a fancy backsplash.
If your backsplash has dated tile or if there isn’t tile, you may want to consider replacing or adding a backsplash. You can just do a simple white subway tile, or some sort of marble or tumbled stone or a glass backsplash. Many of these tiles are mosaics that are on meshed sheets, so they are rather easy to install.
Adding a tile backsplash is one of the most cost-effective ways to change the whole style of your kitchen, Gibson says. Not only will the change be dramatic, but it’s fairly easy to swap out old tile for new – or add a backsplash where there wasn’t one before.
Chuck those outdated travertine tiles and choose colourful subway tiles. You can even go with peel and stick tile backsplash for an easy install.
As long as the material you’re considering is dirt and water-resistant, don’t be afraid to use it. And if your budget for backsplash is super low or nonexistent, it’s okay to think outside of the box.
One of the affordable options is stencils and paint, as it can let you add dimension with minimal investment and lots of styles. Obviously, you’ll need to have some artistic skill to pull off this look.
ADD NEW DECORATIVE ACCESSORIES
Don’t forget the power of colourful pretty accessories! Adding in some plants and flowers – whether real or faux – can instantly uplift a kitchen.
Hanging art on the walls – a sure-fire way to bring personality into any space and certainly one of the most inexpensive ways to improve the look of any room.
DIY ARCHITECTURAL DETAIL
Sounds fancy and expensive, right? Wrong! There are so many simple DIY projects you can do in a kitchen to transform how it looks totally.
When I did my DIY Kitchen Makeover in 2019, my favourite project was the range hood that we built. It was a quick afternoon project that made our old cabinets suddenly look fresh and modern. Plus, it only cost us $100!
Other easy ways to add architectural detail in the kitchen include adding corbels around your window cabinets, or feet to the base cabinets. These are both cheap items to purchase that really make stock cabinets look high end.
These are just a few cheap kitchen update ideas to get you thinking. There are just so many things you can do yourself, and you can do them over time. Don’t try to tackle everything at once because you will get burned out.
Gradual change is good for you and your wallet. How have you updated your kitchen without renovating? Stainless steel appliances are the next on my to-do list…just have to save up for those a bit more.