Update Your Kitchen in Budget-Friendly Ways

20 Nov, 2020

Are you thinking of remodelling your kitchen? Be careful—what seems like an easy project can easily turn big and expensive. The good news is that there are ways to update the look of this space even if your budget is limited.

Cost-Effective Kitchen Renovation: Understanding the Projects and their Prices

Kitchen renovation can be an expensive undertaking, but there are many cost-effective options that can give your kitchen a fresh and updated look. Here are some common kitchen renovation projects and their typical costs in Singapore:

  1. Cabinet refacing: Cabinet refacing is an affordable way to update the look of your kitchen cabinets. This process involves covering the existing cabinet fronts with new veneer or laminate. The cost of cabinet refacing typically ranges from $8,000 to $20,000.
  2. Countertop replacement: Replacing your kitchen countertops can give your kitchen a fresh and updated look. Popular options include granite, quartz, and solid surface countertops. The cost of countertop replacement typically ranges from $4,000 to $10,000.
  3. Appliance upgrades: Upgrading your kitchen appliances can improve their functionality and energy efficiency. Popular options include new refrigerators, ovens, and dishwashers. The cost of appliance upgrades can vary greatly depending on the type and brand of appliance, but typically ranges from $1,000 to $5,000.
  4. Lighting upgrades: New lighting fixtures can improve the look and functionality of your kitchen. Popular options include new pendant lights, under-cabinet lights, and chandeliers. The cost of lighting upgrades can vary greatly depending on the type and brand of fixtures, but typically ranges from $500 to $1,500.
  5. Flooring replacement: New flooring can improve the look and durability of your kitchen. Popular options include tile, hardwood, and laminate flooring. The cost of flooring replacement can vary greatly depending on the type and brand of flooring, but typically ranges from $2,000 to $5,000.
  6. It’s important to keep in mind that the cost of these projects can vary greatly depending on the size of your kitchen, the materials used, and the complexity of the work.

You can certainly make a major impact in your kitchen without spending a lot of money by combining some elbow grease, creativity, and patience. Here are some ideas for your kitchen renovation in Singapore.

Budget-Friendly Kitchen Renovation: Tips and Tricks

If you’re looking to update your kitchen but are working with a tight budget, there are many budget-friendly options available. Here are some tips and tricks for budget-friendly kitchen renovation:

  1. Painting cabinets: A fresh coat of paint can give your kitchen cabinets a new look without the cost of replacing them. Consider using a neutral color that will complement the existing decor.
  2. Adding new hardware: New cabinet hardware can give your kitchen a fresh and updated look without the cost of replacing the cabinets. Consider using new knobs, pulls, or handles that complement the existing decor.
  3. Using removable wallpaper or decals: Removable wallpaper or decals can add a new look to your kitchen without the cost of repainting. These can be easily removed without damaging the walls.
  4. Incorporating second-hand or vintage items: Incorporating second-hand or vintage items can give your kitchen a unique and personalized look without the cost of new decor. Consider using vintage plates, bowls or glassware as decorative elements.
  5. Organizing and decluttering: A clean and organized kitchen can make it look and feel bigger. Organizing and decluttering can be done at a low cost, it can be done by using drawer dividers, creating a command center and using storage bins and containers.
  6. Using open shelving: Open shelving can give your kitchen a modern and updated look without the cost of new cabinets. Consider using open shelving to display your favorite dishes and decor.
  7. Being creative with the layout: By being creative with the layout you can create a more functional and efficient kitchen. By using a combination of these tips and tricks, you can create a budget-friendly kitchen renovation that will give your kitchen a fresh and updated look.
  8. It’s important to plan and prioritize the renovation and decorating projects according to budget and time available. And always consider getting quotes from multiple suppliers to compare the cost and value they can bring.

Some general tips

  1. Have a plan.

Perhaps the most important rule with updating a kitchen is to take time to plan things out. You can start by getting ideas about kitchen interior design in Singapore in organizing them in one digital folder, or using Pinterest. If space is a consideration, then be sure to look at magazines and interior decorating websites for ideas on how to do small kitchen design in Singapore.

Think about your priorities as you plan. What do you really need? What features and amenities are non-negotiable? Having a clear list of priorities will help ensure that your project does not balloon to twice its size, keeping you within budget.

Have an honest look at your kitchen. Step back and try to be as objective as possible. What bothers you about the space? What about it do you like? Are their features that you can live with, even if you don’t love them? For example, maybe you really need a new countertop, but your cabinets are okay as they are. Perhaps your current kitchen layout is not so bad, so you don’t have to relocate the kitchen sink and do major replumbing. The more elements you leave untouched, the cheaper your remodelling project will be.

Once you have a clear idea of what changes you want to make, get advice and a quotation from several contractors. You don’t have to sign a contract with them right away, but getting a quote can give you a rough idea of how much you can expect to spend on your project.

  1. Save money on materials.

Keeping what you have when possible is the best way to cut costs on materials. In most cases, all you need is a fresh coat of paint to give dingy cabinets, counters, or kitchen walls a fresh new look. It’s also a good idea to check other rooms in your home for pieces that you can potentially reuse in the kitchen. Maybe that tired old bench in your foyer is perfect for creating a new breakfast nook. Or maybe an unused outdoor lamp can be repurposed as kitchen lighting. Websites that feature creative kitchen design in Singapore will give you more ideas.

Take time to shop around. It can be tempting to buy things that you like as you see them, whatever the cost, just so you can’t take them off your list and move on. But more often than not, you will see them again for much less—sometimes at half the price. You might also see better alternatives that are cheaper.

Don’t be afraid to shop second-hand. You’ll be amazed at all the things you can find and reuse centres—from kitchen sinks to appliances to hardware all the way to lighting fixtures, at bargain prices. You can also try looking for used items online.

It might also be a good idea to sell some of your old stuff to make money that you can put or it’s your kitchen renovation. Who knows? That old microwave you hate might be the perfect piece for someone else who is also doing a kitchen remodel.

Finally, think about mixing it up. You don’t have to go low end or high and all the way. Use just a touch of luxurious accents and then go for affordable materials elsewhere. For instance, you can splurge on fancy cabinet doors for your upper cabinets and choose a more basic model for the lower cabinets.

How to save money on specific items

  1. Kitchen cabinets

Kitchen cabinets can quickly eat up your remodelling budget. Fortunately, there are several ways to keep costs down in this regard.

  • Repaint or refinish your old cabinets. Take all the doors off and clean them with a degreasing agent. Give them a light sanding before applying primary and repainting them. To refinish old doors, sand them thoroughly and then apply some fresh stain and varnish.
  • Reface your cabinets. This means replacing all the kitchen cabinet doors and drawer fronts, and then applying new veneers to the boxes. It’s a great way to really change up the look of your kitchen for less.
  • If you want to replace your cabinets entirely, go for stock models instead of having them custom built. Stock cabinets vary widely in terms of quality. Most of them are made of particle boards and veneers instead of plywood, but don’t worry—well-made ones will hold up to wear and tear just fine.
  • Choose open shelving. Modern kitchens in Singapore these days beach cabinets altogether and use open shelving instead. It is a great small kitchen idea because it tends to make the space feel airier and more open.

  1. Kitchen counters

The total price you have to pay for a kitchen counter renovation will depend on the material you choose. Here are some budget-friendly options:

  • Laminate – Made from a core of compressed paper or particle board covered in a layer of hard plastic, laminate is not only easy to install—it’s also very affordable. This material comes in a wide range of patterns and colours. Don’t cut on it though, as it scratches easily.
  • Solid surface – Made from polyester acrylic or a blend of the two, this material a stain resistant. Small scratches and nicks can be sanded out.
  • Butcher block –This trendy countertop material is actually made of thin wood strips that are bonded together to form a slab. It’s fairly easy to install and can give a modern kitchen a warmer look. However, it’s vulnerable to scratches and stains.
  • Granite – This is a bit more expensive than the materials previously mentioned, but it’s also more durable. Granite resists heat, scratches, and cuts. It looks great, too.
  • Quartz composite – Also called engineered stone, this material provides the hardness in the look of a natural stone slab but is much cheaper because it’s made from quartz chips bonded together with epoxy or acrylic. Like granite, it is resistant to stains, scratches, and heat damage.

Here’s another great way to save on your countertop renovation: fake it. Get cheaper granite tiles and set of a solid slab of granite, and then install those tiles over a plywood base and tile backer board. Use dark grout to camouflage the grout lines and make everything look like a single piece.

  1. Kitchen appliances

It sure is tempting to splurge on professional kitchen appliances from brands like Wolf or Viking, but unless you are a chef or in a very serious home cook, you really don’t need them. Here are some ways to keep costs down:

Replace only appliances that truly need replacing. Don’t toss something if it’s still in good shape. If you’re worried that they won’t match the new appliances you are bringing in, consider repainting them. These days, you can easily by appliance paint in a wide range of colours and can even mimic the look of stainless steel. You can even paint your refrigerator with chalkboard paint to give it that trendy look that also makes it functional as a message centre.

If you’re buying new appliances, make sure that they are energy star models. They cost so much less to run, thereby saving you a lot of money over the long term.

Final word

Patience is key when embarking on a kitchen remodel project in Singapore. If your budget is tight, you don’t have to do a head-to-toe renovation all at once. Proceed in stages. For example, you can replace your kitchen cabinets this year and your kitchen counter next year.

21 Woodlands Close #09-43 Singapore 737854 (Primiz Biz-Hub)


+65 9484 1863




+65 9484 1863

2018 - 2020 SHE Interior Design Pte Ltd (201801974 M)