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Adding style and function to your kitchen doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag— there are plenty of ways to complete kitchen renovations on a budget. Here are a few kitchen remodel tips to get you started and get your kitchen looking like a spread in HomeStyle magazine.

Kitchen renovation tips

Paint Your Cabinets

This is one of our favorite kitchen remodel tips. Old, worn cabinets can make a kitchen with otherwise state-of-the-art appliances and finishes look dilapidated and outdated. Consider painting your cabinets to achieve your desired aesthetic, instead of wasting thousands of dollars on new cabinets. If your cabinets are flat wood, wood laminate, or metal, then you’re in luck, because these materials are relatively easy to paint over. Plastic laminate may require professional products and the help of someone more experienced. You’ll need to sand the surface of the cabinets and apply a primer-sealer so the paint can adhere more easily.

Finish the work yourself

Demolition, drywall, and subflooring installation with lumber or other hardwood can become too complicated for a DIY enthusiast. For those projects, you may want to bring in a contractor. But who’s to say you can’t put the finishing touches on yourself? Fill your kitchen with fresh paint, high-end fixtures like a tile floor, and other furniture. You can save money when you eliminate the cost of labor, so be wise when choosing how much work to give your contractor and how much to save for yourself.

Simple fixes are often best

A room’s look can be drastically updated by adding extra lighting fixtures. Lighting is one of the most impactful changes one can make to a room, so take advantage of all types of lighting fixtures: chandeliers, drum lights, small pendants, lanterns, etc. Harsh, fluorescent lighting washes people out and casts a chemical, unsightly shadow onto your kitchen. Warm it up and try to incorporate as much natural light as you can in addition to warm, interior light.

Consider all your options

Kitchen renovations on a budget mean choosing which parts of your kitchen to update wisely. You may be tempted to swap out whole spaces for something entirely different, when in fact there’s a less costly and equally satisfying option. For example, if you want to update your countertop space but have an island, consider just replacing the surface of the island with a butcher block or other material. This adds visual dimension and a rustic feel to your kitchen without all the trouble of full countertop installation. Since the island is often the focal point of the kitchen, it can distract from any design features you’re not especially proud of!

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.