How to modernise your kitchen on a budget
If you want to modernise your kitchen but you're concerned about the cost, don’t be dismayed. There are many ways to get a new kitchen without destroying your bank balance.
Downgrade to upgrade Saving money doesn’t mean you have to compromise on everything in your new kitchen. Select a few fittings or features that you want to spend a little more on, then budget in other areas. For example, if you have your heart set on a granite bench-top, perhaps you could have a tiled splash-back instead of a glass one. By choosing one or two standout features, you can still achieve the 'wow factor' you're looking for.
Don’t move mountains You can save on electrical and plumbing contractors by working within the design of your existing kitchen. Keep your sink, oven and gas hotplates in their current positions, to minimise structural and design costs.
Buy off the shelf It can be expensive to get cabinets, shelves or tables custom-made. While this may be your only option when you’re working with an unusual space, it might still be possible to buy some fittings off the shelf. Stores such as Ikea,and specialist kitchen suppliers sell flat pack or modular cabinets that you can assemble yourself, which should cost less than hiring a professional installer. Also think of creative alternatives – if your dream kitchen has an island bench, why not consider a small table or a unit on wheels instead, for a relaxed country feel.
Refresh rather than renovate Before you gut your entire kitchen, consider whether you would be happy with just a few changes. Refreshing the cabinets with new handles and a lick of paint can change the look of a room entirely.
Other low-cost changes that can lift your kitchen include replacing the bench-top, installing new window blinds and modernising the light fittings. Laminate has also had a revival, with stylish colours and designs that may just transform your kitchen at minimal expense.
'Net a bargain The internet is a treasure trove of bargains, but it’s not just the large retail stores that offer special deals online. Many individuals and small businesses offer surplus stock or items they simply don’t need on sites like Gumtree and eBay. You’ll be amazed at what people will sell for a fraction of the original cost.
Recycle Just because you want a new kitchen doesn’t mean you can’t salvage some of your current fittings. Perhaps your tapware has hipster retro charm, or you have hardwood boards hidden beneath your lino flooring. Look at your existing kitchen objectively before you start throwing anything out.
DIY While you may not have the time or skill to DIY everything, you may be able to save some dollars by splitting the workload with your tradies. Paint the walls on the weekend or tile the splash-back, and you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you did it yourself.
Creating your dream kitchen without breaking your budget is certainly possible. Don’t be overwhelmed by the initial quotes, just look at where you can make little changes without compromising on your vision.
When planning your renovation, contact your mortgage broker to find out how they can help you get into your new kitchen.
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