The following affordable Kitchen upgrades can increase your value while being mindful of your pocketbook.

1.Update your cabinets by painting them and installing new hardware. Of course this is less costly if you do the work yourself BUT if you’re not great at diy projects, you might KITCHENwant to either hire someone to do the work OR reach out to a friend or family member who has proven themselves to be very handy and a good diy-er. If your cabinets end up looking repainted instead of looking like new, you can actually decrease instead of increasing the value of the ‘upgrade’. Changing out the hardware will be easier if you choose new hardware that uses the same number of holes as the old. Then you can simply unscrew the old and install the new. Maybe your cabinets don’t need painting but look like builder grade. Adding crown molding will immediately upgrade the look of your upper cabinets. Simple and effective upgrade!!

2. Change your sink and faucet. Stainless always a good choice but certainly if your home’s design warrants, farm sinks are very popular and stand the test of time because they are considered as trendy as they are retro.  Faucets should also reflect the style of your home. Big box stores along with home bargain outlets have great options at surprisingly minimal costs.  If you don’t know how to install a sink or faucet, again, don’t be afraid to ask for help or shop around for a local handyman who comes with great references for quality of work and cost to value!

3. Update or add a backsplash that blends with your countertops (if you have granite, try to match the tones with glass tiles so it looks like it was all done at that same time!) There are so many great and affordable backsplash options right now that for the minimal work involved, the value can be strong.

4. If you have old, dingy, linoleum or vinyl floors, replacing them with newer flooring or upgraded options like ceramic tile (which can be very very affordable and one of the less difficult diy projects). There are even fabulous new ceramic tiles that when installed, look like hardwood floors! Refinish hardwood floors instead of replacing but if they are too far gone, you might even consider scraping and painting them. There are sooo many great flooring ideas online. Take time to look at several and choose the one you believe you can do yourself or with a friend that will enhance your room and your pocketbook!

NEW Kitchen Appliances5. Get rid of the countertop microwave and old fashioned over range vent and replace it with a built in microwave. This can be done for under $400 and will immediately update the look of your kitchen. OR if you already have a built in microwave but an old fashioned hood, install a ductless range hood (will keep your costs down by not requiring you to add new venting). This will definitely create the look and feel of a gourmet kitchen. Anytime you’re adding or changing a hood, make sure that the height from your range to vent will fit before you do all the work and then discover you won’t pass inspection. Simply read the box before you buy and adjust accordingly.

6. If you’ve already made lots of updates and are wanting to take it to the next level of upgrade, replace your ceiling light with recessed lighting. This can certainly be more costly if you don’t know someone who can do the work, but if you do, this can certainly improve the wow factor. If you can’t afford to install recessed lighting and you have outdated or a blah overhead fixture, replace that fixture with a more current and upgraded look. Again, big box stores and outlet stores have great options at surprisingly affordable prices.  If you have a high ceiling, consider installing a fanlight!

7. Last but certainly not least, upgrade your countertops. This is a definite shop around for your best options and deals.  Granite tiles are cheaper than a slab of granite so if you want See the source imagegranite, this might be an option you’ll consider. Cement is certainly popular right now and not surprisingly butcher block is back in style. Again, shop online and then in person. Take your time!


The key to all of this is to set a budget and work to stay within that because it’s very easy to get wooed by the more expensive options. Doing so can possibly eliminate any value that you might have derived from all your hard work. And again, don’t hesitate to draw on friends and family that you know have the expertise to help you. They most likely will be happy to do so and possibly offended if you didn’t even give them the opportunity to assist you with your projects.