When we renovated our split level kitchen/living room (see before and after pics) we got multiple people asking how we stayed on budget and ways we kept costs low. For fun I put together a list of some of the ways we cut our costs and stayed within our budget, all the while creating a beautiful kitchen and living room that is entirely ours!
1. Recruit friends and family to help!
We couldn't have made any of our makeover possible without the help of our family and friends. Rally together with your community and pool your resources together. You would be surprised how willing everyone will be to help out!
2. Check your inventory of supplies before buying new (i.e. paint brushes, rollers, tarps, etc).
Before Guy and I started we went and bought EVERYTHING new; from paintbrushes, to rollers, to painter's tape, and trays (which all adds up) so when we started working on everything we realized we had double...sometimes TRIPLE of everything! Luckily we kept the receipts!
3. Don’t be afraid to literally DO IT YOURSELF.
I am speaking to YOU young people! Now more than ever we have all these resources at our fingertips with Pinterest, HGTV, DIY bloggers, etc to figure out how to paint cabinets OURSELVES without spending thousands of dollars on hiring a professional! Same goes with installing floors, painting walls, or even your countertops (how to blog here)!
4. Refurbish your old cabinets and countertops if possible.
This tip alone saved us thousands of dollars! By reusing our old cabinets and countertops we were able to not only cut the costs but save the time not having to search for those items!
5. Don’t overspend on new hardware. Reuse old hardware by spray painting.
I think we are often deceived into believing that we have to buy the most expensive hardware to get the "look" that we want when in reality stores like Menards and Lowes have these bundled packages of nobs and handles at a significantly lower price. By doing this we saved at least $150. As far as our cabinet hinges (these suckers were in seriously bad shape...corroding, covered in gunk, rusting, etc) we couldn't find the exact type that we needed without having to drill new holes into the cabinets and so what did we do? Got on Pinterest, looked up a wicked conncoction on how to "de-grunge" cabinet hardware and all it took was a crockpot, dawn dish soap, vinegar, and some serious elbow grease. Lastly, we ended up spray painting them with Rustoleum metallic spray paint and they were looking brand new! We call that a DIY win!
6. Install as much as you can on your own (i.e. flooring, plumbing, electrical, tiling).
Before we started we had never installed flooring in our lives but there's a first time for everything right! Plus doing it this way saved us $1,000! Score! If you have family or friends that are skilled in the plumping/electrical fields call on them! We were lucky enough to have a brother-in-law that was a plumbing master and came and did a HUGE chunk of that for us. If not, that's ok to...shop around for an affordable but acknowledged plumber in your area. We also did the subway tiling ourselves; we rented a wet saw, got some volunteers and got down and dirty!
7. Get smart when buying appliances.
This seems like...well...DUH! But you'd be surprised how much money you can save if you shop the right way when looking for appliances. We ended up searching around and found some crazy awesome deals at HHGREG. We didn't hear such great things about their service so what we did was we took those deals over to a very reliable, very well known appliance store in our area (Dick Van Dyke's Appliance World) where they do price matching on anything and we ended up getting everything we wanted for $3,000!
8. Look for deals...on EVERYTHING
Again, this seems like another no brainier but a lot of people don't want to "shop around" because it's too much of a time inconvenience. But let me tell you, if you are on a budget, like we were, this is WELL worth the time that it takes! When it came to our subway tiles we ended up finding some at Menards for 17 cents/tile (they're normally a $1 a piece at least). Same goes for light fixtures, we not only searched all the different department stores but we shopped online as well and found some better deals there. Shopping around pays off!
9. Second hand shops are great for finding furnishings at an affordable price.
Whether you're looking for furniture, or decor second hand shops/garage sales are where it's at. This is were I find most of my "trinkety" things like vases, mason jars, clocks, antique kitchen ware, etc. And what's funny, these are the things people ALWAYS comment on the most! If you want a unique look like we did, these second hand shopping trips are well worth it!
If you have any questions comment below and I will be happy to get back with you!
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