A couple years ago we decided to move across the state for my husband’s job. He didn’t have to transfer, but he wanted to. I was totally on board because neither of us were happy where we were.
So off we went to look for a new home.
When we walked through this house, I quickly checked it off my mental list and was ready to see the next house. But my husband saw something more. He saw the potential that I couldn’t see. So, we went to a few more showings that day and ended up back at this one.
This is what the kitchen looked like when we bought the house. Surprisingly, it was actually one of the most updated rooms in the house! Crazy, right?!
At closing, the previous owner told us that the kitchen used to be carpeted, but they added the laminate flooring before putting the house up for sale. Yikes! I’m pretty sure this house really would have been off my list if I had seen that carpet!
None of the appliances matched, so over the first year of living here, we replaced them all.
That was definitely the most expensive part of our update. We chose to go with white appliances instead of stainless to keep the price down. And our dishwasher was actually returned after a couple uses by its previous owner, so we got it for a steal!
We also painted the cabinets with Chalk Paint® in French Linen. If you look at the sides of the cabinets in the before pictures, you can see that they were fading. The sun was turning them a grayish color and they just looked so ugly against the cabinet fronts.
So we took 4 months to paint them! Yeah, you read that right! I honestly don’t know when we started them, but we finished half the kitchen by my daughter’s birthday party that September and didn’t finish the other side until our guests came for Christmas in December.
We’re so pathetic. If you’ve ever painted kitchen cabinets, though, you’ll understand! It’s not a fun time at all!
Another update we made were new knobs, drawer pulls, and hinges on the cabinets. We chose black and couldn’t be happier with them. I love how they stand out against the gray/green cabinets.
We also bought new light fixtures, painted the walls, trim and ceiling, bought new blinds, and a new faucet.
Fortunately, we didn’t have to replace the backsplash, countertop, or flooring. We were able to keep costs down by working with what we had.
It’s definitely not a “show” kitchen. We didn’t have the budget for that. But we updated what we could and are living with the things that are good enough. And one day we’ll sell the house and hopefully make a little money on our updates.
To recap, these are some things you can do to keep costs down on your kitchen update:
* Buy white or black appliances – which (usually) cost less than stainless
* Buy returned/gently used appliances – make sure the issue was fixed and that the appliance is in working order
* Paint cabinets instead of replacing them
* Use what you have – if something isn’t perfect, but it works for now, embrace it and work it into your design
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So now I can tell my husband he was right for once! Even though I wasn’t too sure about the house when we bought it, it has definitely challenged us to look past what it is and see what it could be. And this kitchen is proof of that!
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See how we keep our updated kitchen organized (on the days that I actually clean!) by clicking here.