If you're working on a kitchen remodel, you know how easily lights, tiles, sinks, appliances, cabinets, and other materials can add up. It can be difficult to create a quality kitchen without blowing your budget. Instead of splurging for that $1000 espresso machine or high-end tile, consider the following alternatives:
Instead of purchasing custom cabinets
Check out returns at your local home improvement store. Before you even design your kitchen, look at your cabinet options. When stores get returns on custom orders, they usually can't return them to the manufacturers. Custom cabinets are hard to resell because they don't match up with just any kitchen. Rather than hold onto the merchandise, they sell them at discount, which is where you come in. Even if you have to order a few additional cabinets, you can still often get a great price.
Rather than custom cabinets, you can also refinish retro cabinets, which you can find for extremely low prices. Stay away from anything trendy, which will look outdated in a hurry, but there are tons of classic options that just need to be stripped and re-stained or re-painted. Sure, you'll spend more time remodeling this way, but you'll also save hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
Instead of purchasing fancy tiles
Use stock tiles with splashes of customization. Those Italian floor tiles backsplashes look pretty, but they can be hard on your budget, especially if you have a fairly large kitchen. Instead, opt for a less expensive stock tile. Choose a color you like and then find a fancier option with a design using some of the same colors. Sprinkle these more expensive tiles throughout your floor or backsplash or create a patterned border. The result? A designer look for a fraction of the price.
You can also choose to purchase inexpensive tiles in multiple colors to create a mosaic effect. You don't have to be particularly artistic to create a mosaic - simply log online, find a design you like, and follow it as you lay tile in your own home. It is kind of like a paint-by-number. If this is your first attempt at tiling, stick to a simple, classic design.
Instead of purchasing dozens of cool, trendy gadgets at full priceâ€¦ ask for show or floor models. Most products are demonstrated or displayed. If you go to stores when they're being traded out for newer gadgets, you can purchase that model that was used, often for a much cheaper price. Sure, there might be a little wear and tear, but in most cases, show or floor models are still in great condition. For the best chances at scoring one of these models, attend conventions, conferences, and shows where they are being displayed. Companies may sell to avoid shipping them home again.
In addition, you can save money on all of those trendy fondue pots and blenders if you're willing to purchase products with missing pieces. While that might initially sounds like a horrible idea, the fact of the matter is that the coffee maker you love will work just as well and look just as nice even if it out comes with three cups instead of four. Don't be afraid to ask if they have any returns with missing pieces. As long as the missing piece is non-crucial, you'll get a great gadget at a very low price.
Instead of purchasing an expensive wall treatment
Stick to a neutral color that you can purchase in large quantities. Buying wallpaper or hiring an artist to create a faux treatment is pricey, but you can create a beautiful wall color on your own. The key is to use classic, timeless colors. If you want to bring in color, do so with a painted border or choose pretty colored fabric for curtains and place settings.
You also can attempt a fun wall covering for your kitchen using a decoupage technique and old cookbooks. Simply paint the wall with the decoupage paste, apply a page from the cookbook, and paint over the entire thing with more paste. The result is a fun wall covering for any kitchen (and you can use this same technique in other rooms of your house - like in an office or library).
Instead of purchasing expensive appliances today
Watch for sales tomorrow. The best tip is often the most obvious! The prices of the appliances you want will drop during slow times of the year, which varies depending on the item. For example, refrigerators are typically less expensive in January and June and stoves usually go on sale during February, March, and November. Of course, most items go on sale for Black Friday, after Christmas, and around the Fourth of July. Your kitchen remodel doesn't have to happen all at once. If you can use your old appliances for a few months, you can save a lot of money on new items at a later date.
Along those same lines, don't be afraid to ask for a discount. When you purchase big-ticket items (anything over $1000), you can negotiate for a lower price, ask for free shipping, or even get you old appliances removed for free if you pay cash or provide your own financing. Don't be afraid to haggle.
The bottom line is that your kitchen doesn't have to be expensive to look expensive. In fact, with a little creativity, you can remodel your kitchen on a shoestring budget without looking cheap. People will never guess that your new kitchen didn't cost a fortune!
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