Previously in our series Luxury Looks Less Money, we discussed the four major parts of renovating a kitchen: appliances, flooring, cabinetry, and countertops.
We discussed the various types of major appliances (ranges, ovens, and refrigerators), suggesting that not all high-end models deliver the best, most efficient performance. In flooring, we went over the pros and cons of different materials, such as the various wood types, linoleum, vinyl, tile, and more.
Iif you don’t need to fully replace your cabinets, there are ways to give them a luxurious, stylish look without depleting your budget. And in another post, we discussed pros and cons of countertops, including such materials as marble, granite, quartz, recycled glass, and more.
Spending Traps to Avoid
Most of these are common sense, and you might already know many of them – but it’s always good to be reminded. However, there might be some that you’ve overlooked or didn’t realize; some are so simple that they’re easy miss.
Poor or no planning might be the top culprit for the simple reason of time. Some homeowners simply don’t have the luxury of planning ahead. Maybe a major incident occurred – such as flooding – which has forced the renovation. Sometimes, something like this cannot be helped
However, what can be avoided is what many people are guilty of: changing the project once it’s under way. This is a prime example of poor planning. If you have the time – and a month or two, maybe longer, might be necessary – plan your project. Visit showrooms, see samples, meet with professionals, and get estimates on not only the materials but also installation.
A second major issue that will break a budget with the speed of a lightning strike is choosing cheap labor that does the labor cheaply. Sure, the goal might be to save money, but not at the expense of having quality work done. The results of poor construction will eventually show, especially in cabinet and countertop installation, where small mistakes now become huge headaches later.
The third one is the easiest one to avoid, but it takes discipline and strict adherence not only to the budget but also to your needs. The problem is that most people mistake their needs for their wants – and this can cost you. Don’t buy features that are pointless or unnecessary. Don’t buy fancy refrigerators or special burning ranges if a lower-priced one is more energy efficient and more dependable. Smart appliances are meant to save you money because they are designed to power down during periods when rates are highest. However, if your home doesn’t have the accompanying smart meter, or if your utility company doesn’t offer discount rates during these times, you’ve wasted your money.
A fourth recommendation is to avoid buying a fancy refrigerator that promises better food preservation due to its superior design and technology. Be careful, as these claims are hard to quantify. If you do your research and due diligence, then you’re sure to find a fridge that’s energy- and temperature-efficient without spending more than is necessary.
A final suggestion is to shop around. You might find your countertop stone at a local stone shop or quarry. Buy overstock materials for your cabinetry. Consider undamaged materials that come in damaged boxes for your flooring. Furthermore, don’t automatically refrain from buying flooring with minor flaws that won’t be noticed. And if you’re skilled enough to do any refinishing, painting, or installation yourself – without causing any problems – then you should obviously do the work.
Remodeling your kitchen can be as big a job as you make it to be. It can also be as expensive as you make it. With planning, due diligence, flexibility, and even ingenuity, your project can be trouble-free and within your budget, with a result that you’ll be happy about for years to come.