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9 Ideas For a Kitchen Remodel on a Budget For Your Kitchen

Kitchens are often the heart of a home. They are where friends and family tend to gather during all sorts of get-togethers. You make food and memories in the kitchen all the time, but rarely do you ever get the kitchen of your dreams whenever you move into a new house.

A professional remodel is often too costly to justify but you shouldn’t just give up. In this article are 9 ideas for a kitchen remodel on a budget that shows just how close you can get to your dream kitchen without breaking the bank.

9 Ideas for a Kitchen Remodel on a Budget

Creating your dream kitchen is definitely not budget-friendly. Before you know it, your budget is out the window, and you haven’t even made any real fixes yet. Whether you’re trying to focus your money on more necessary fixes or you just don’t have the income to invest in a full fix, these budget kitchen remodel ideas offer a great fix.

1. Fit Storage Everywhere

Fit Storage

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There are a lot of items stored in a kitchen. Unless you have a spacious bathroom, you like to keep food, cleaning supplies, kitchen appliances, trash bags, and more inside or right next to your kitchen. If your kitchen wasn’t designed with storage in mind, most of the products and tools are just lying around, tossed in a corner, or in the back of the pantry to be dug out later.

When remodeling the space, think about all of the items you need space for. In this picture, the wall next to the cabinet is now storage for cleaning supplies, including the brooms and mops.

Usually, this space is just hollow, to create a sort of frame for a fridge. All you have to do is cut out the outer wall, attach doors, and put in the shelves and hooks you want. When trying to do it yourself, it can feel a little frustrating, but it saves a lot of money compared to going and buying specially-made shelves that fit in that area.

You don’t just have to do this next to your fridge either. See what other spaces are empty holes that you can fill, like the corner where cabinets meet up, spaces near the stove, and unused walls of your island. By putting up a shelf or creating a cabinet, you give yourself a lot more space.

2. Create Unique and Custom Cabinet Spaces

Cabinet Spaces

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If you’re really handy and creative, you can even make cabinet spaces tailored to your needs. In this picture, we see a cabinet that perfectly holds a trash and recycling bin. Above that is a cutting board with a hole straight into the trash so you don’t have to make a mess on the counter or use extra dishes.

This idea is great, but there are so many other options. Some people put in cabinets that perfectly hold parchment paper and plastic wrap. Other people put in vertical organizers for pans, baking trays, and cutting boards.

If you’re good with electricity and know how to make a sturdy shelf, you can even make a shelf that holds a toaster or mixer, complete with an outlet. Then, the shelf can just pull out. You don’t have to strain your back anymore to lift the heavy mixer with this idea, just gently pull out the shelf and get to work!

This does take a little work to do yourself but is well worth it. It might not be a great idea for someone who’s never remodeled before, though.

3. Get Rid of Yellow Lights

Yellow Lights

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Nothing makes a kitchen look more dated than old yellow lights. No matter how updated your kitchen is, if you don’t have good access to natural light, or white light in the kitchen, the room looks dingy and old.

Consider replacing all your bulbs with something brighter. You may also have to consider cleaning up your light fixtures or getting new ones. If you’ve replaced the bulbs before, but are still getting a dim yellow shade throughout your kitchen, it’s likely due to grease and dust build-up on the glass fixture around the bulb.

Take the time to remove all of the grease on the fixtures to ensure actual bright light comes in. If nothing wants to come off, and you’ve tried every degreasing trick out there, go and buy some budget light fixtures.

Clean the windows thoroughly and get rid of any dingy curtains to increase the natural light in the room, which also easily brightens up a kitchen and makes it feel new.

4. Remove Clutter and Add Decorations

Remove Clutter

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If you’re considering renovating your kitchen, you likely have a lot of clutter around. Spices might be stacking up on the counter, cookbooks on the island, and random appliances just thrown all around.

Try to find spaces to fit these items. Consider getting some organizational tools like bins and containers to make it easier to stack items in a cabinet and free up space.

Once your counters are bare, find some fun decorations or your favorite cookbooks to put in key places around the kitchen. This makes the kitchen look more intentional in its design and on the minimalistic side.

Simple products with a small burst of color are best for a more modern-looking kitchen. In the picture, you can see that most of the books are a neutral color, as is the basket holding the fruit. Only the, likely fake, lemons add a pop of color and brighten the space while also pulling the eye that way.

Of course, to clear clutter off of your counters, you first need to have places to put everything. If you’ve tried downsizing your collection of appliances, dishware, and spices and bought some organizational tools, but you still don’t have enough space, you may need to consider adding more cabinets or shelves somewhere in your kitchen.

Another great idea is to tailor your cabinets to your needs. While you saw some of this with the single-use cabinets, another trick is to space your shelves exactly as far apart as you need them.

Measure the biggest item you put on one shelf, such as a box of cereal or mac and cheese, and move the shelves down so they are just taller than that. If you organize similar-sized products together, there are likely going to be shelves you can make shorter, which then means you can add another shelf and reduce wasted space in a cabinet.

5. Get Cabinets Designed for Small Kitchens

Cabinets Designed

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If you’re looking to put in more cabinets and want to make sure you get the most storage you can, don’t look at standard cabinets. Instead, consider small kitchen cabinets. In small kitchens, storage ideas have to be creative, including thin, pull-out shelves as shown in the picture above.

If there was dead space in your kitchen before where a full cabinet couldn’t fit, that might be the perfect place to put one of these thinner cabinets. Since these cabinets are fairly common in small apartments and homes, you might be able to save some money by looking for these to fill awkward spaces in your kitchen.

Otherwise, you might have considered trying to get custom cabinets that fit better in your home, which costs a lot of money, or just leaving empty spaces throughout the kitchen. This option provides a more budget-friendly way to make the most out of the space in your kitchen without spending a lot of money on custom cabinetry.

6. Don’t Buy Real Stone

Don’t Buy Real Stone

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Almost everyone loves the stone look, whether it’s quartz or marble, a solid slab of stone in your kitchen, or all throughout it, really finishes a look. Unfortunately, even the cheapest stone can put a pretty big hurt on your budget.

If you want something that looks nice and is still functional, consider getting contact paper. There is contact paper out there that looks like expensive marble for a tiny fraction of the cost.

Sure, contact paper will get cut up, burned, or ruined at some point. But even if you have to replace all of the contact paper in your kitchen in a year, it’s still cheaper in the long run to do so than to try to get a stone slab that may also get damaged or broken at some point.

7. Use Wallpapers and Stickers Instead of Real Tile

Wallpapers and Stickers

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On a similar train of thought, don’t look for expensive tiles. If you already have tiles, or at least a smooth wall, in your kitchen, go for stickers instead. Tile stickers provide the appearance of tile for a lot less, and you can change them out later if you decide you don’t like them.

They take some time to put on as you have to line everything up almost perfectly, but they come in all sorts of colors and patterns to suit whatever theme you want. These are pretty black-and-white mosaic tile stickers, but there are more plain options, or crazy bright options as well.

Pro tip: These tiles are usually pretty easily removable, though you may want to double-check reviews to make sure. This means that they are usually renter-friendly if you want to change up the place you’re living without making permanent renovations.

8. Get Organized


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If you can’t afford to give yourself more space, find ways to make the most out of the area you have. This creative idea simply allows you to hang up trash bags like you would toilet paper in the bathroom. This stops them from becoming a tangled mess under your sink or in the pantry. It also makes them easier to find and grab.

Ideas like this don’t necessarily constitute a remodel, but they can be part of the process. Instead of getting custom cabinets that fit trash bag rolls, just hang them up out of sight! By doing that, you easily save a couple hundred dollars, and your kitchen doesn’t look any worse on the outside while remaining as functional as it would have had you bought the fancy cabinetry.

9. Change up the Floor’s Direction

Floor’s Direction

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Another great renovation that completely changes the look of a kitchen is to change up the flooring. If you have halfway decent floors already that you don’t have to break to remove, you can take the time to carefully remove them and just reuse the pieces, but in a new pattern. Go for a herringbone pattern instead of a horizontal run.

Another cheat is to leave the floor and put peel-and-stick on top. I know, if you follow all of the advice on this list, you’re looking at a whole kitchen filled with stickers. But it really is a great way to cut costs and looks just as good.

Plus, when your kids drop something that dents it, or your dog’s nails start to cut into the flooring, it’s not as upsetting as it would have been had you paid for expensive flooring. Peel-and-stick flooring is also often renter-friendly, by the way.

Diane McGee

Diane enjoys cooking, reading, and writing at her desk. She loves to let her words captivate the world and writes regularly for online publications. Diane also enjoys teaching kids during her free time.

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