DIY Kitchen Remodel: How to Find Great Deals Without Giving Up Design

Article by guest contributor Danielle Hegedus 

The kitchen is probably the most utilized room in your home, as well as the room where you spend the bulk of your time with friends and family. If you’re thinking about taking on a home improvement project, why not start with the kitchen and make this high-traffic zone into a space that you absolutely love. At Modernize, we know that even if you’re on a budget, there are plenty of ways to  increase the functionality and the style of your kitchen. With a little creativity and hard work, you can have the kitchen of your dreams for a price that won’t break the bank. 
Even better news, kitchen remodels are almost always worth the investment. According to the 2015 Cost vs. Value Report, a kitchen remodel can yield a 67-79% return on your investment, depending on the scope of the remodel. Read on for DIY, budget-friendly ways to turn your kitchen into a beautiful space that reflects your personal style and works for your lifestyle.
Set the Tone  for the Room With Custom Kitchen Cabinets
Your cabinets definitely serve as the foundation (design-wise) for your kitchen. If your cabinets are dated, it’s hard for any upgrade to give the room a fresh look. While ordering new cabinets and having them installed can be convenient, it can also be very expensive. If you’re willing to put in a little elbow grease, you can have beautiful, affordable cabinets that meet your storage and style needs. Ready To Assemble (RTA) offers stylish, durable custom cabinetry for a fraction of the cost because you assemble the cabinets in your own home. Assembly is a breeze with all parts being pre-cut, and holes pre-drilled. The end result will be a stunning kitchen that serves as the backdrop for family dinners, holiday gatherings, and culinary experiments (delightful and disastrous) for years to come!
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Maximize Storage to Stay Organized 
As you upgrade your kitchen, add smart storage solutions to help make your kitchen a clean, organized space where you’ll want to spend time preparing and enjoying meals with family and friends. Install multiple shelf units within cabinets to double and sometimes triple your vertical storage space. You can also make the most of those faux drawers (typically found below the sink) by converting them to tilting drawers that hold sponges and other small cleaning supplies. If you’re working with limited space for dishes, install a rack that hangs underneath the cabinets with hooks to hang coffee mugs. You can also add a magnetic strip to the wall to safely store knives and save drawer space.
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Add a Fun Backsplash
Adding a backsplash to your cooking area is a quick and easy way to update your kitchen. Tile is definitely the most popular option for backsplashes. It is easy to install and to keep clean (no spaghetti stained walls!) and comes in an amazing variety of sizes and color combinations. For a more modern look, consider an easy-to-install stainless steel backsplash. To create a more rustic look, consider stacked-stone panels. Depending on how bold your choice, your backsplash can easily become the major design component of your kitchen.
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Explore Your Countertop Options 
Granite and marble are beautiful and popular choices for kitchen countertops, but they can also be prohibitively expensive. If you’re willing to explore other options, you can find budget friendly countertops in an array of colors and patterns to fit into your design scheme. Formica laminate countertops come in hundreds of styles and are durable and wear resistant, so they’ll look good for many years to come. Other inexpensive, easy-to-maintain surfaces include solid wood and butcher block countertops, as well as unexpected materials like concrete or glass which can be customized with stains and dyes (concrete) or LED illumination (glass).
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Make Your Own Custom Kitchen Island
If you have the room, definitely consider adding an island to your kitchen. Kitchen islands provide extra counter space for meal preparation, a serving surface for parties, and a casual dining space. A factory ordered island may perfectly match your cabinets, but it will also cost you a pretty penny. Check out antique stores and look for an unexpected item to serve as your kitchen island. You’ll save a lot of money, get all of the benefits of a traditional island, and have a great conversation piece when guests visit your home. You can upcycle almost any piece of furniture (a chest of drawers, display case, console table)  that fits your space and that you can securely firmly to the floor.
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If you’re looking to update other items in your kitchen, such as appliances or lighting, be open minded to shopping consignment. Visit restaurant supply and salvage stores to look for deals.
Ultimately, you’ll want to prioritize kitchen upgrades based on your lifestyle. If you are a gourmet cook, it may be worth it to invest in top-of-the-line appliances. If you have a large family with chaotic schedules, storage to keep your kitchen organized may be the most important thing to you. If you like to entertain or simply need a casual dining space, you definitely need a kitchen island. With a little patience, you may just get everything you need for your dream kitchen without the hefty price tag!