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Saving money on kitchen costs:
cabinets, labor, appliances and services

 

On average, people in the USA spend around $23,000 in fitting a new kitchen.

 
Taking the “standard” US kitchen that’s used to calculate prices, (consisting of a sink and base cabinet, a double base cabinet, 3 single base cabinets, 4 wall cabinets, housing for an oven and dishwasher , countertops, handles and fixings) – for off-the-shelf kitchen units you could pay:

$1-8,000 at the budget end of the market,
$8-30,000 at the mid market,
$30-60,000+ at the high end.

If you’re thinking of having fully bespoke cabinetry – well the sky’s the limit.

These prices don’t include delivery, installation or appliances, decorating, flooring or tiling.

Installation for an average kitchen can be anything from $700 to $5000 depending on site and services condition – and again fitting bespoke units will cost significantly more.

Taking a typical list of kitchen appliances – washing machine, cooker hood, oven, hob, dishwasher and fridge freezer – can cost from $2,000 at the budget end of the market, averaging $3,500 – but at the top end of the market a single extractor can cost over $10,000.
 

Saving money:

You can still get a new kitchen on a tiny budget. If your kitchen cabinets are in good general condition but are simply dated, it’s possible and straightforward to find companies that just supply new kitchen unit doors, drawer fronts and worktops. These can save you several thousands of pounds, while giving a new look and feel to your kitchen.

If you have a compact kitchen or are willing to do some basic DIY, it’s possible to spend far less than $1,000 – however if your DIY skills are less than brilliant, you could end up costing yourself in the long run. With current gas and electrical regulations, these services MUST be fitted by a trained and certified technician – so there is now no such thing as a fully DIY kitchen.

To keep your remodeling costs under control, you need to plan ahead, compromise at times, and keep emotions and financial decisions seperate.

To save money remodeling you can:

1. Seek out affordable alternatives to expensive products.

* Laminate and solid surface countertops come in colors and patterns designed to resemble stone, marble, granite and wood.
* Tiles and sheet laminate flooring, can offer colors and patterns indistinguishable from travertine and other stone floor options.
* Modern laminate floors can look exactly like wood, even down to texture and having accurate v-grooves and yet are considerably cheaper than real hardwood floors.
* You can reface and refinish your existing cabinets instead of replacing with new.
* Buy off-the-shelf stock cabinets instead of semi-custom or custom. They’re so much better than in the past and offer excellent material, color and accessory choices.
* Shallow or counter-depth appliances look like built-ins because they don’t stick out beyond the cabinets. What you lose in visual you gain in savings as they cost nearly half the price.

2. Try to maintain a similar layout. In keeping your appliances, sinks, faucets, and lights where they are, you can utilise existing plumbing, gas and electrical outlets. Moving utilities is a quick way to rack up sky-high labor costs.

If you’re looking to save money design your kitchen in such a way that there is no need to modify their positions. The money savers are keeping the sink where it is and the cooker where it is. Water supplies and waste water are easy to move short distances but to move a sink to the other side of a room is going to cost. Move the oven and hob and you’ll be looking at moving the cooker supply circuit and or a gas line. Upgrade to a higher power item and you may need to run an entirely new electric circuit back to the supply box.

Don’t forget that any time you cut into your walls, you run the risk of causing or uncovering a problem that must be fixed.

3. Allow for the worst with a contingency sum.
The National Association of the Remodeling Industry suggests putting aside at least 10 percent of your overall budget for unforeseen costs, such as:

* Structural problems that require repair
* Poor insulation
* Code upgrades required by inspectors
* The removal of Asbestos
* Fixing previously carried out poor workmanship
* Mold treatment
* Dry and wet rot
* Essential upgrades to the electrical service panel
* Termites or carpenter ants.
* Bad plumbing and lead piping

4. Try a little DIY and tackle some of the labor yourself. Fairly easy, unskilled jobs include minor demolition works such as removing cabinets or flooring, decorating walls and ceilings, or replacing and upgrading hardware.

Of course don’t take on more than you can capably finish. Many a do-it-yourselfer has tried to tackle plumbing or electrical work to save money, and then needed to hire a professional for a costly fix, or worse yet caused damage to their home – and even injury or death to themselves or others!

5. Save the fine detail or costly decorating for later. It’s easy to add custom touches and upgrades to trim and moldings, hardware, cabinet tidies or a tiled backsplash at a later date. It may end up more expensive this way, but can save money in the short term.

6. Understand the difference between needs, wants and wishes. Write a list of what you want to achieve in your new kitchen and then place each item in a corresponding column:

* A need is a must-have such as a working oven.
* A want would be nice to have and is possible such as a new stainless steel range cooker.
* Wishes are your dream items such as a heavy duty commercial grade cooking station.

By researching product prices early in the planning process you’ll have a realistic understanding of what you can afford and with some careful saving or juggling you may be able to add a few wants or wishes too!

7. Don’t feel the need to buy new. Thanks to e-bay and other furniture recycling sites, its easy to find second-hand kitchen cabinets and appliances at a bargain price, however it’s vital to make sure that everything fits – and that care has been taken to avoid any damage to the kitchen cabinets during removal and transportation – as often with older cabinets it’s impossible to buy replacement parts that match.

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