Skip to Content

How To Remodel A Kitchen On A Budget

Kitchens have become a focal point in a home. They can serve as a kitchen, dining room, laundry room, and general meeting area. Additionally, open-plan kitchen/living areas are popular, especially in smaller houses. So, a beautiful kitchen is paramount to a beautiful home. But don’t despair, you can make your kitchen on a budget.

To remodel your kitchen on a budget, it is crucial to plan well and shop smart. Salvage what you can, refurbish before replacing, and buy used instead of new. Transform existing cabinets with a unique finish or a new door. Cover existing tiles with tile stickers or use stencils to create a new design.

Remodeling a kitchen on a budget does not mean cutting corners. It also doesn’t mean having to settle for a cheap look. It means buying and working smarter and understanding what small, inexpensive fixes make the most significant impact.

Looking For Kitchen Supplies To Go Along With Your Remodel? Add These Supplies To Your List

Planning & Labor

Planning and designing your kitchen remodel before starting will vastly reduce the chances of emergency spending. You need to know who you need, what you need, how much you need, and when you need it.  

Order all your supplies and materials in advance to avoid costly delays and pricey compromises. For example, if the sink you want and can afford turns out to be on back-order, you will have to settle for a different sink or wait until it is re-stocked.

Settling may force you to choose a more expensive sink or a sink you are not happy with and will end up replacing again. Waiting will extend the remodel duration and increase the labor cost if you are using professionals. 

If you are competent in your abilities as an amateur general contractor and have some friends who are willing to help, you can save on a professional contractor’s cost. You can then allocate the money you would have spent on labor to materials or appliances, or you can use some of it to hire a designer. 

You also don’t have to hire a contractor to do the whole remodel. You can hire individual professionals to do the jobs you can’t do yourself. 

Salvaging And Shopping

Catalog your kitchen before the remodel begins. Look at the floor, walls, ceiling, countertops, cabinets, furniture, appliances, sink, and lighting. What can you salvage?

Some salvageable items will need no work, and others may need refurbishing. Use the salvageable items to guide your design. For example, if you have a perfect granite countertop, choose colors and styles to complement the granite.

Habitat for Humanity ReStore sells new or slightly used building materials, appliances, and furniture for less than retail costs. Check out your local department stores and hardware stores for items before going to specialist shops. 

Compare prices online so that you know what to buy at each store. This will also prevent purchasing items at one store and finding out that they are cheaper in the next store. 

Shop online. Some stores are exclusively online, but their prices are low. Other stores have online-only sales, so you won’t get a discount if you buy in-store.

Look for sales and special offers, and if you have to wait to buy something because it’ll be half off in two weeks, then wait!


Walls and ceiling: Fresh paint or a new color on your kitchen walls and ceiling is the perfect place to start a budget remodel. Using a bold, patterned wallpaper on a statement wall can elevate the aesthetic, but it doesn’t have to be expensive because you are not covering all the walls. 

Paint your backsplash tiles a new color or give them a pattern using a stencil and paint. You can also buy tile stickers to put on your existing backsplash. 

Floors: Wood flooring can be sanded and re-stained to make it look new. You can paint your existing tiles a new color or give them a new design using a stencil and paint. You can also use tiles stickers on the floor.

Cabinets: If your cabinets are in excellent but outdated condition, modernize them with white paint. Sand and revarnish wood cabinets; you can even choose a lighter or darker stain to make the change more dramatic. Paint the hardware to update the look even further.

Another trick is to add cornice to the top and bottom of your cabinets. Or you can add strips of wood to the doors to give them a paneled look. 

Some people love glass-fronted display cabinets, and other people hate them. If you need storage space, not display space, you can line the doors with grass-cloth wallpaper instead of replacing them. 

Appliances and sinks: It always looks better to have matching appliances. Instead of spending hundreds on a new refrigerator or dishwasher to achieve this look, you can get a roll of vinyl adhesive film for $10-$20. These adhesive films are easy to apply and come in various styles to match your other appliances. 

Instead of buying a new sink, investigate the cost of refinishing it. This will make it look brand new.

Furniture: If your barstools, kitchen chairs, and tables are still going strong, but you are bored of their appearance, it will be a waste of money to replace them. You can paint, revarnish, and re-upholster these items for a fraction of the amount you would spend replacing them. 

Partial Replacement

Walls:  The purpose of a backsplash is to prevent oil and other foods from staining your walls. You can clean the tiles with soap and water, but the grout often gets stained. So, you can give your tiled backsplash new life by simply replacing the grout.

Floors: Wooden floors are not always ideal in a kitchen. If you prefer a tiled look, you can cover the boards with self-adhesive tiles. These are easy to lay and are considered a partial replacement because taking up the old flooring is half the job and needlessly expensive. You can also apply these adhesive tiles over existing tiles. 

Cabinets: If your cabinets are so outdated that no amount of paint can help them, try replacing only the doors. If you are putting new doors on existing cabinets, it is vital that you measure correctly before ordering or making them. Instead of replacing the whole door, you might get the right look with new hardware. 

If you have enough cabinet space in your bottom cabinets, consider taking out your top cabinets and replacing them with a few floating shelves for styling décor and aesthetically good cookbooks. 

If you don’t have enough storage space, which is more likely in a kitchen, buy stacking shelves to put inside your cabinets instead of building new storage. Stacking shelves allow you to efficiently use the space inside your cabinets while still allowing you to access everything easily. 

Lighting: Replace light shades instead of whole fixtures. There are countless DIY options for changing up the lighting, and they are all inexpensive.

Fully Replace Or Install New

Countertops: Countertops need to be tough. Granite is a great but pricey option. To minimize the amount you spend on granite, you can buy off-cuts that fit your countertop. Prices also vary according to color, so look at the cheaper colors. 

Granite is not the only material you can get. Treated concrete and wooden butcher blocks are also great options, and they are often cheaper. 

If you want to install an island, consider a small island to save on costs or substitute it for a tall wooden table. 

Faucets: Replacing your kitchen faucets is a cheap way to improve the look of your kitchen, especially if your new faucet matches your hardware or other accents.

Lighting: You can pick up new light fixtures at your local hardware store for a fraction of the cost compared to a specialized lighting store. Creating task lighting won’t just improve the kitchen look; it’ll make it better to use. 


Never underestimate the power of décor. You can enhance the aesthetic of a kitchen for the price of some decorative mason jars, a vibrant green potted plant, and a patterned rug on the floor in front of your sink. 

Next Steps

Remodeling a kitchen on a budget is a rewarding experience because the most minor and inexpensive alterations can make it look completely new. Planning, preparation, and hard work can save you loads of money. 

During planning and preparation, consider all aspects of your kitchen: floor, walls, ceiling, countertops, cabinets, furniture, appliances, sink, and lighting. Decide what doesn’t need work and style the rest around these features. 

Refurbishing what you have with a new finish or trim can transform the look of your kitchen. If you are replacing items, you should consider second-hand options as these typically cost much less than buying new ones and give your kitchen a unique aesthetic.

Good lighting and tasteful décor are affordable and can pull everything together to complete your kitchen’s transformation.

We’ve compiled a complete list of frequently asked kitchen questions for new and experienced homeowners.

Our team of experts answers these questions to help assist you through DIY projects and home repairs.