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10 Tips to Update Your Kitchen without Breaking the Bank

As with any relationship, things can get stale between you and your kitchen. Sure, it still looks good when you give it a thorough clean. But maybe those appliances don’t sparkle like they used to and that backsplash doesn’t make you smile like it once did.

But that doesn’t mean you have to blow all your spare cash on a kitchen remodel or spend the next year eating out of cans while you attempt a full-blown DIY kitchen makeover.

image - 10 Tips to Update Your Kitchen without Breaking the Bank
10 Tips to Update Your Kitchen without Breaking the Bank

With a few simple changes, it’s easy to update your kitchen in the space of a weekend. And often, these small kitchen update projects can make a big impact without the need for a big budget.

Read on for some great kitchen updating ideas that won’t break the bank.

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  1. Paint Your Cabinets

The cabinets take up a lot of surface area in your kitchen. As such, refreshing them with a coat of paint is a surefire way to bring new life to your kitchen in an instant.

But compared to the other suggestions on this list, painting your kitchen cabinets is tricky to do yourself. Which is why we recommend hiring professional cabinet painters for this particular job.

It’s true that this will stretch your budget a little more. But the high-quality finished result will be worth it. And you won’t have to worry about retouching areas you missed or hiring professionals later down the line to redo your handiwork.

  1. Incorporate New Lighting

Kitchen refresh ideas can be practical too. Adding task lighting above your kitchen island is a great way to add a focal point to the room while also giving you better visibility while you work. And if you choose well, you can get some chic lighting without breaking the bank.

Pendant lights in wrought iron or copper can help you create a French country kitchen look. Or you could go for modern lighting options if you prefer a sleek and stylized kitchen.

  1. Upgrade Your Accessories

Wondering how to update a kitchen on a very limited budget? Upgrade your small appliances and kitchen accessories to make a big impression without the need to spend big bucks.

Updating these small details is the kitchen equivalent of adding colorful throw cushions to your sofa. Except these kitchen accessories have a practical purpose as well as an aesthetic one.

Consider a pastel blue tea kettle, a cute vintage-style toaster, or a shiny new coffee machine. Other options are setting out a new set of wooden chopping boards, hanging up copper cookware, or displaying decorative storage jars.

  1. Put up Shelves

Your kitchen cabinets are great for hiding a multitude of sins, such as ugly Tupperware boxes and mismatched cookware. But if you’re lacking storage space, adding in some shelves is an ideal kitchen update.

Not only do shelves provide much-needed storage, but they’re also a lot easier and cheaper to install than extra kitchen cabinets. Rustic wooden shelves are always a winner. Use them to display everyday dishes, food storage jars, or cookware for a unique and practical solution.

  1. Go for a Color Contrast

If you’re unsure about painting all your cabinets in a new color, how about trying one of the hottest kitchen update ideas and opting for a color contrast instead?

This involves painting your bottom cabinets in a different color to the upper cabinets. A black and white contrast often looks modern and stylish, especially with metal accents on knobs and handles. Or you could consider two different shades of the same color, such as a palette of grays or blues.

  1. Bring in Decorative Touches

Often, people forgo decorative details in the kitchen and stick to practical and functional accessories. But the simplest kitchen update ideas can often make the biggest impact.

For something unexpected, bring decorative touches like Roman shades, plants, and wall art to your kitchen decor. These kinds of details add a softer edge and breathe new life into a space that should be as much about socializing and entertaining as it is about cooking and cleaning.

  1. Add Wallpaper

Kitchen tiles and cabinets only take up so much space in a kitchen. If you have large expanses of boring walls, how about adding some wallpaper for one of the more unexpected kitchen refresh ideas?

These days, peel-and-stick wallpapers make it a lot easier to bring new life to your walls. And with so many patterns to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect pattern for your space.

  1. Makeover Your Appliances

Colorful refrigerators often come with a hefty price tag. A much cheaper option is to breathe new life into your old fridge by painting it in a bright or pastel shade. It’s a lot simpler to do than you might think, and is a fun way to add a pop of color to your kitchen.

Another option is using liquid stainless steel paint on your refrigerator and oven. Not only will your appliances shine like new, but they’ll also look like they’re a matching set.

  1. Update the Backsplash

Updating your backsplash sounds like a complicated kitchen update. But thanks to the wonders of peel-and-stick technology, a new backsplash can be yours without any need to deal with grout.

Stick-on backsplash panels are super easy to install and come in a variety of designs for a new look. Faux subway tiles look fresh and modern, while copper-like ones add warmth, and marble-look tiles add a luxurious feel.

  1. Paint the Floor

Are your kitchen’s wooden floors looking a little tired? For a high-impact kitchen flooring update without the need to pay for professional refinishing, try painting the floor instead.

Pale blue or dove gray is classic choices that look chic without every speck of dirt showing up. Or you could try stenciling a design onto your floors to create a stylish and bold patterned effect.

Great Ways to Update Your Kitchen on a Budget

It’s a lot easier than you think to update your kitchen, no matter how small your budget is.

As these ideas show, a lick of paint, a few new accessories, or some practical additions like lighting or shelves can make all the difference. And some of them are so simple, even DIY beginners will be able to complete them in a flash!

For more inspiring interiors and decorating advice, be sure to check out our other blog posts.

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