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How to Create a Realistic Budget for Your Kitchen Remodel

Creating and sticking to a budget during a remodel can be a difficult task.


There are many reasons why your budget can change (usually increase) during the course of your project including add-ons, unforeseen expenses or simply deciding last minute to splurge on a specific item.  However, there are a few pretty simple ways to create a budget and stick to it!   


  • Decide how much you want (are able) to spend

    Many factors contribute to outlining a budget. Deciding on your budget of course means calculating how much you can afford to spend but also clearly identifying the objectives behind your remodel.   Do you plan to sell within 5 years?  Is the remodel an improvement on your real estate investment?  Is this a long-term family home?  Is the neighborhood a “high end neighborhood”? 


  • Understand the breakdown of costs

    Know where your money is going.  On average, cabinets will make up 35% of your budget, followed by labor (20%), appliances (20%), windows (10%), fixtures (5%), fittings (3%) and the all-important other (7%). By knowing where your money is going, you can figure out what you can cut if money gets tight.


  • Planning, planning, planning

    Every hour you spend planning will save 3-4 hours in execution. That includes planning financially for the unexpected. Even the most experienced contractor is unable to know the challenges that might be uncovered during your remodel - like dry rot in the walls or corroded plumbing.  A good rule of thumb to budget an additional 20% for these unforeseen issues.


  • Set your priorities.

    Make a list that includes “must have,” “nice to have” and “willing to forego” items.  This will make it easier to make decisions if money becomes an issue.


  • Factor in “non-remodel” costs.

    Other expenses include the cost of eating out if your kitchen won’t be available during the remodel or if you need to leave your house entirely for a period of time incurring costs to stay elsewhere.


  • Changes and extras.

    Try not to be tempted to deviate from your budget in the middle of the project by changing the scope of work. This will increase all your costs including contractors, products and time.


Creating a realistic budget probably isn’t the only question you have with regard to moving forward with a kitchen remodel. Check out our other articles for more tips and information. Better yet, drop us a line - we'd love to hear from you!

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