Tips for keeping your kitchen remodel under budget

The majority of home remodels take longer than expected and go over-budget. While it’s impossible to guarantee that a remodel goes exactly according to plan—there are many factors that you have little to know control over—there are things you can control to increase the odds that your remodel goes more quickly and under budget.

Don’t rearrange the layout

Changing the layout of major features in your kitchen is where you’re most likely to run into problems. For instance, if you’re going to tear down a wall to make your kitchen have a more open floor plan, have you thought about what you’re going to do about the gap in the flooring where the wall once was? If you’re planning on hardwood throughout, then you’ll need to have someone come and install some wood flooring in the gap. Not only that but you’ll probably have to have all of the hardwood sanded down and re-stained so that it all matches since your existing hardwood is going to look more worn and discolored than the small patch of new flooring.

Moving appliances around is difficult too. With the exception of the fridge which uses a standard 120-volt outlet, appliances usually require special outlets of a higher voltage to power them. Even the fridge can be problematic though if it needs a water line for the ice maker. That means in addition to completely tearing out cabinets and counters and rebuilding them to accommodate a new layout, you’ll also have to bring in an electrician to redo all the wiring. That will add at least a day or two of labor at $50 to $150 per hour. The same goes for moving the sink to a different location—it will require the plumbing for the kitchen to be completely redone and a plumber will cost around the same as the electrician.

Avoid the most premium options

Marble may be the favorite countertop material currently but it isn’t the most practical. For one, it’s price point means it will require a significant portion of your budget for the remodel. Also, it’s a more porous stone so it will stain more easily. A good alternative that’s still attractive but more durable and less expensive is quartz or granite. Instead of hardwood which is more easily dented or damaged by water, laminate closely resembles the look and feel of hardwood but it is a lot more durable. Finally, don’t go for the professional series appliances. They cost a lot more than their mid-grade counterparts and they’re not worth the extra money. Don’t go with the cheapest appliances either. Some mid-range stainless steel appliances from a trusted brand should work fine.

Don’t tear out the baseboard radiators

If your kitchen has baseboard radiators, or if you’re expanding the kitchen into a space that has them, you don’t have to tear them out to accommodate your vision for the space. You can purchase baseboard radiator covers which snap into place to give them a new look for a lot less than the cost of having them removed completely and replaced with some other heating solution.

 

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