No matter the size of your kitchen (or your budget), at the conclusion of your remodel project, you’ll want to have a space that functions better, looks better and feels more like home. And that makes sense; after all, the kitchen is a unique space in the home where functionality and aesthetics are equally important — both of which you must consider when conducting a renovation.
With that in mind, here are six kitchen hacks that will help you get the most out of your renovation so that you create a space that looks, feels and functions like the kitchen of your dreams.
1. Use the Insides of Your Cabinets
Making the most of your cabinetry is a small fix that will increase the functionality of your kitchen dramatically. When installing or updating your cabinets, add hooks and small baskets to the insides of the doors. You’ll be amazed by how many uses you’ll find for them. Indeed, the baskets are great for storing sponges and other cleaning supplies in lower cabinets as well as spices or oils on the pantry doors. In fact, the hooks can hold everything from gloves and scrub brushes to measuring cups and spoons.
2. Consider Using Alternative Materials
The cost of a kitchen remodel is dependent on how much of your budget you allocate to each part. It’s hard to have your heart set on renovating a certain aspect of your kitchen — like your countertops or flooring — only to realize it’s out of your budget. Before you lose hope, however, know there are wide price ranges for every element of the kitchen. For example, flooring can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $6,500 for a 125-square foot kitchen.
However, there are some great alternative materials that sell at various price points and that will still give you the look you desire. If you have your heart set on stone countertops, look instead at stone remnants, which cost a fraction of the price. Likewise, if you love wood flooring, choose a less expensive wood, like hickory, instead of oak.
3. Don’t Mess with any Plumbing or Electrical Lines
One way to stretch your budget is to keep the existing layout of your kitchen intact, particularly the location of your sink and stove, which would require relocating the plumbing and electrical lines. And that’s something you probably want to avoid. Case in point: On average, moving plumbing lines will run you $4,000, while moving any electricity lines will run you $3,200. Not only can messing with these areas eat into your budget, but changes to any electrical and plumbing lines tend to also require securing additional permits. Plus, it will inevitably extend your renovation project by several days or weeks.
4. Paint, Paint, Paint
Freshening up your kitchen can be as simple as applying a new coat or two of paint on your drab-looking walls. In particular, crisp, white cabinets that feature some form of new hardware will turn your dark, outdated kitchen into the bright farmhouse space you’ve been wanting. However, you can save hundreds of dollars by painting your kitchen tiles instead of replacing them altogether.
5. Buy Stock Fixes for Rollout Storage
Installing rollout drawers for your shelves and cabinets is one of those easy fixes that will truly change the way your kitchen functions. In fact, these fixtures make it so much easier to organize and access everything in your kitchen that you’ll be kicking yourself for not having done so sooner. However, you don’t have to purchase expensive custom cabinets to get this great feature. In fact, most big hardware stores sell premade, easy-to-install drawers at a reasonable price. Make sure to also look for ball-bearing slides, which will support heavy pots and pans, and will allow your drawers to fully extend.
6. Pay Attention to Lighting
The big-ticket items — floors, countertops and appliances — usually get and rightfully deserve the most focus in a kitchen renovation. But that doesn’t mean you should skimp on other areas. In fact, lighting is often an afterthought, but is something that can make a huge impact on the look and function of your kitchen. More importantly, kitchen lighting should be bright and focused on areas in which you plan to spend a majority of your time. Ultimately, you’ll want to spend your money on a few beautiful pendants or one statement fixture, plus some type of under-cabinet lighting.