Budget Kitchen Updates - 17 Ways to Upgrade

17 Ways to Update Your Kitchen on a Budget

Revamp your kitchen without breaking the bank. Explore 17 affordable ways to refresh your kitchen, from installing a new sink to upgrading your lighting. Get inspired with Fresh Kit.

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Let’s face it – updating your kitchen is not a cheap endeavour. From cabinets to countertops, appliances and fixtures, numerous factors influence the cost of a kitchen renovation.

Some of these costs can be controlled, while others are out of your hands. With that in mind, having a budget before starting your kitchen makeover is important to avoid unnecessary expenses and stay on track.

Modern kitchen renovation

Why are kitchen renovations so expensive anyway?

The main factors are the design, quality of materials, and contractor hourly rate. You’re paying for people’s time and expertise and the price of premium quality products that professionals recommend. If you’re on a tight budget, you might be better off doing a few smaller things first and saving up for a full renovation by trusted tradespeople later.

Depending on your specific situation, the costs associated with updating all or part of your kitchen can be daunting. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t find affordable ways to update this essential area in your home. 

We created this list to help you fill the gap between an old, dull kitchen and a new, glamorous showstopper!

1: Install a new kitchen sink for an instant visual upgrade.

Choosing the right sink will depend on the look you’re going for. Sinks come in various materials, including copper, stainless steel, and cast iron. Some also come with pre-installed sinks, saving you time and money. Kitchen sinks also come in different styles, such as single or double bowl, drop-in or standard, and the amount of space between the faucet and the edge of the sink.

New kitchen sink installed into old worktop for a renewed look

Sinks with more room underneath are convenient for transferring large items from the sink to the fridge or pantry, but they don’t look as nice as sinks with a more compact design. Finally, think about the material and colour of your sink to create the look you want.

2: Replace cabinet doors or hardware with something more stylish.

Install new handles on your cabinets or drawers, or find a vintage-style set that looks great on your kitchen cabinets. You can also change your cabinet doors for a different style or material. If you have a shabby chic kitchen, you might want to find a distressed set of doors to enhance the look.

painted cabinets with new hardware to upgrade an old kitchen's look.

One of the most popular ways to get new cabinet looks is to use cupboard paint or chalk paint, available in hundreds of different shades from various brands that you can apply yourself and, in a few coats, have something unique and completely refreshed without buying new doors. Pair these new versions of your old cupboard doors with fancy new hardware, and you have a winning combination.

3: Update your countertops – Granite, quartz, or something more affordable

Countertops are a great place to start when updating your kitchen because they are the room’s focal point. Granite and quartz worktops are very popular options but can be expensive. You could try a worktop offcuts seller online to see if they have anything suitable in stock to save money.

Updated worktops for a new look in your kitchen

Concrete and stone-effect laminate are two less expensive options, but they can cost as much as a natural stone countertop if you opt for a high-end faux stone option. Concrete is a great option to personalise your countertop and make it unique to your home. You can add things like coloured aggregate or patterns to make it unique.

4: Install a pot rack to hang your pots and pans.

This will organise your pots and pans and save a lot of space. If you don’t have a lot of space for a pot rack, then you can also hang your pots and pans on the wall with a magnetic strip. If you have a lot of pots and pans, install a pot rack in your kitchen to store them all in one place. Pot racks are very inexpensive and easy to install.

5: Invest in a new kitchen appliance.

Upgrade your oven, install a wine fridge, or get a real coffee maker to make your kitchen more functional and enjoyable. If you’re in the market for a new appliance, many great models will suit your needs and fit your budget. A new oven can make your kitchen much more efficient, and a wine fridge will give you a convenient place to store and serve your favourite vintages. You can make your kitchen more functional and enjoyable with minor updates.

6: Upgrade your kitchen flooring to something more stylish.

Hardwood, stone, laminate and porcelain are excellent options for stylish kitchen flooring. They’re also all extremely durable and easy to maintain. You can install them yourself or hire a contractor to do the job. Most flooring options are fairly affordable, so you should be able to find something within your budget.

7: Add crown moulding to make your kitchen look expensive and upscale.

Crown moulding comes in various styles, but they all share the same purpose: to adorn the tops of your walls and ceilings, making your home look more beautiful. Crown moulding is easy to install and comes in hundreds of different styles, so you can find one that suits your taste. It is also a great way to repaint your house on a budget.

8: Install a new, modern kitchen tap for instant visual appeal.

Something as simple as a new tap can dramatically alter the look of your kitchen in a few hours. These are also easy to install and don’t cost much money, so they are a great option for anyone who wants to give their home a new look but doesn’t have much money to spend. Not only will a new tap give your kitchen a brand-new look, but it will also protect your pipes from rust and corrosion. You will be thankful for your new tap each time you use it.

9: Upgrade your cabinet doors with something more stylish.

There are hundreds of options on the market for stylish and inexpensive kitchen cabinet doors these days, and you can even find some great options online if you want to save even more money.

Upgraded cabinet doors for a modern look without breaking the bank.

We recommend looking for doors that are solid rather than hollow or have a veneer that you like, purchasing doors with a few small nicks or scratches if you like the style, and choosing a door with a finish that you can easily match to other cabinets in your home if you want to save even more money. Buy a used set if you want to save even more!

10: Re-organise your kitchen countertop to create more space for food prep.

Put small items away to organize your counter and make it easier to work on. Put tall jars or bottles in the back and leave the front area open for chopping and cooking. Store small items in jars to save space and make them easy to grab when needed. You can also use jars to organize your spices to make them easier to see and reach when cooking.

Put a small cutting board at the front of your counter to make it easy to chop vegetables and store them there until you are ready to use them to save space and make it easy to grab them when needed.

11: Install a breakfast bar for a convenient eating space.

Breakfast bars can also be used for additional storage of food items. You can install a breakfast bar on an existing wall or build it from scratch. They are fairly easy to install and often made of wood, metal, and plastic. You can install a kitchen island or another eating surface for additional space. Most islands are fairly easy to install and often made of wood, metal, and stone.

Breakfast Bar for convenient eating in an existing kitchen space.

These bars can be used for eating, drinking, or socializing and are a great space for enjoying your morning coffee. They also give you an easy place to store snacks or other items you may want to keep close at hand.

14: Invest in new lighting

You can invest in new lighting designed to be energy efficient and bright. You can also invest in lighting designed for kitchens, such as lights that turn on when you open your cabinets.

LED strips are the best option if you want to save on energy. You can get these lights in various colours, making them ideal for those who want to add a little personality to their kitchen lighting. They’re also easy to install, so hiring an electrician is unnecessary.

15: Upgrade your kitchen with a cosy nook (space permitting).

This is a fantastic way to add character to your home and create a focal point in your kitchen. You can also use this space to create a cosy nook to curl up with a good book or a cup of tea on those chilly days. You can do many different things to create a cosy nook in your kitchen, but the most important thing is that you make it your own.

16: Put in a TV if you don’t have one.

A TV in the kitchen may not be everyone’s idea of high glamour, but it will add a lot to the enjoyment of your time there. Cooking is more fun with a screen to keep you company, and you can also use it to learn new recipes or get inspiration from top chefs. Most large flat screens are not too hard to install, so if you think this would work for your kitchen, go for it.

17: Install a bookshelf – It’ll make your kitchen look organised and stylish.

It’ll also make it easy to find your favourite cookbooks and other books if you keep them on a shelf. Bookshelves are also great for displaying collections, so they can still look very stylish even if you don’t use them to store your books. You can display anything on a bookshelf, including ornaments, framed photos, and artificial plants.

Kitchen bookshelf for a fresh look and plenty of extra storage.

You could even use a bookshelf to store your cookbooks and make finding the one you’re looking for easier.

Update Your Kitchen On A Budget Yourself

So there, you have 17 ways to update your kitchen without breaking the bank. We hope you found some inspiration for how to make your kitchen a more enjoyable and functional space.

Thanks for reading! If you liked this post and want to discover ways to make your life more organised and efficient, please visit our blog for helpful tips and advice. Thanks for reading!

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