Case in point: Photographer and designer Erin Kestenbaum transformed her kitchen as part of this fall’s One Room Challenge and thoughtfully included enhanced storage space. Kestenbaum’s creative solutions included vertical tray storage above the fridge, a narrow drawer for oils and spices by the range, and a coffee bar built into a full-height cabinet. "I love designing upfront ways to hide the clutter and appliances that, without a home, will inevitably end up on your countertop occupying space," she says.  

I had countertops installed the Saturday before Christmas. They arrived at 5:00 in the evening. The top was two sections of cabinets. The one section arrived with a small chip on the edge. The other section had a small chip at the seem which they just filled with epoxy. They dropped glue on my newly installed floor as well as outside. The product they used to clean when done splashed on my newly painted wall and won’t come off. Now the wall has to be repainted which means buying more expensive paint. There was a long rust colored line on the edge of the countertop that won’t come off. Nowhere else does that color appear. There is a caulk joint of about a 1/4 inch between the top of the cabinet and underside of top. Cabinet was level so don’t understand the need for the caulk. We like our choice of color and the looks of our tops. Our issue is with the installation. Would not recommend. Read less
Before you start planning, consider the market and decide whether a low-, medium-, or high-end kitchen remodel makes the most sense. Costs can run the gamut from $2,000 for a simple paint-and-hardware upgrade to $50,000 if you’re installing expensive countertops and luxury appliances. Knowing your neighborhood will help keep from overspending – you may not get your investment back installing travertine in your tiny starter – or worse, underspending. Let’s face it, you’ll never see Formica in a high-end home, and in fact, it may become a barrier to your sale.

Flooring installation costs $1,500 to $4,500, depending on various factors. The largest factors include the square footage and material you choose. Vinyl and linoleum flooring tend to be the most affordable but add little or nothing to the value of your house. Tile, granite and wood are more expensive and will help to increase value. The more expensive flooring sometimes proves to be the more difficult ones to maintain.


The installation of my granite countertops was a disaster. It was cut wrong and then the company and the installers tried to blame me the customer for this issue. They the installers wanted to cut my new sink to fit the counter which was cut wrong to begin with. When they (installers) left the first time they said that the company had already used my second slab for another job. Disappointing isn't the word for what we went through with this installation. Once it was all said and done 2 weeks later I found damage to my new dishwasher!!! My home was left a disaster during and after the installation and for what we paid this should never have happened. Read less

Installing kitchen appliances costs $100 to $300 per appliance on average. Investing in higher quality stoves, dishwashers or refrigerators will certainly drive up your total price. However, if you want to improve your home’s value, it will pay to install higher quality products. There are various options to choose from, including EnergyStar-certified, custom built-in, high-end store bought and budget outlet products. If longevity is important to you, look for products with longer life expectancies.
Before you start planning, consider the market and decide whether a low-, medium-, or high-end kitchen remodel makes the most sense. Costs can run the gamut from $2,000 for a simple paint-and-hardware upgrade to $50,000 if you’re installing expensive countertops and luxury appliances. Knowing your neighborhood will help keep from overspending – you may not get your investment back installing travertine in your tiny starter – or worse, underspending. Let’s face it, you’ll never see Formica in a high-end home, and in fact, it may become a barrier to your sale.
Similarly, you can update your kitchen by changing the color of your cabinets. You don’t need a complete remodel to update the look. You can paint your cabinets and make them look like new again! While you can likely complete the painting in an afternoon, it may take a day or two to dry completely. Remember this as you’re planning your paint project. See our tutorial on the Best Way To Paint Kitchen Cabinets. 

The average cost of kitchen fixtures, appliances, and labor differs by U.S. region. Remodeling projects in the Southern United States are generally cheaper than identical projects completed in Northern and Western areas. For instance, a major kitchen overhaul with midrange materials could cost $56,639 in Titusville, FL and rise to $77,460 if completed in San Francisco, CA.


The rate to update a small kitchen is between $5,000 and $20,000, depending on what you install, repair or upgrade. For this room, small is defined as 70 square feet or smaller. You'll have limited options for a project of this size. It's important to set your budget and plan for some DIY work to save time and money. Here are some recommendations for keeping expenses low:

Although the following figures are for each project done separately, you’ll likely be able to save on each project when completed as part of a total kitchen remodel. However, these amounts will give you an idea of how much money each specific area of the kitchen will require. Then, you can add items together that you want completed to come up with a budget objective.
I had countertops installed the Saturday before Christmas. They arrived at 5:00 in the evening. The top was two sections of cabinets. The one section arrived with a small chip on the edge. The other section had a small chip at the seem which they just filled with epoxy. They dropped glue on my newly installed floor as well as outside. The product they used to clean when done splashed on my newly painted wall and won’t come off. Now the wall has to be repainted which means buying more expensive paint. There was a long rust colored line on the edge of the countertop that won’t come off. Nowhere else does that color appear. There is a caulk joint of about a 1/4 inch between the top of the cabinet and underside of top. Cabinet was level so don’t understand the need for the caulk. We like our choice of color and the looks of our tops. Our issue is with the installation. Would not recommend. Read less

Consider narrower cabinets, because most people don’t use the space at the back of cabinets, you can get cabinets that aren’t as deep but are better designed for full access—with pull-out baskets, spice drawers, sectioned drawers, corner cabinet carousels, etc. Fill an extra space with narrow filler cabinets with sliders. Consider reducing a double sink to a single for more workspace as well.


In a well-designed kitchen, lighting serves various functions. For example, an overhead fixture brightens up the overall space, while sconces illuminate specific tasks. "For kitchens, there’s definitely been an uptick in pendants for use over islands," says Ashley Fothergill, creative director at Mitzi and Hudson Valley Lighting. "Sconces are in demand, too, for lighting the washing of dishes in the sink or as an accent along a backsplash behind the stove."


I shopped for days to find the perfect tile backsplash. I spent hours looking for the one in that pin. Then I walked into Emser Tile in Sacramento and it was on the wall of one of the displays. The clouds parted and angels sang…and then I found out it had been discontinued and the wall was getting demoed the next week. (#saddness) Luckily, while we were looking around at Emser Tile, I found another subway tile I loved: Lucente Cascade.
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