Kitchen remodeling cost guide

Among all of the rooms in a home, the kitchen, perhaps, plays the most vital role. Some homeowners may spend there as much time as they do in the living-room, preparing and eating meals, receiving guests, watching TV, or surfing the Internet. That's why when a house is put on sale, most prospective buyers are very particular about the condition of this important space. A well-furnished and functional kitchen may be a considerable house price booster. If you don't feel that your own kitchen fits the description at the moment or you're just tired of its old interior (cited as reason one for renovation among homeowners), you might want to remodel it and wish to know how much money you'll have to spend on that.

Here you will learn about:

Renovating/remodeling a kitchen may suggest a number of furnishing and construction tasks, depending on the scope of work. Homeowners may want to change everything in their kitchen: replace plumbing and gas lines, flooring, electrical wiring and fixtures; install a new stove and sink; or renew the walls by using a different material such as tile. In certain cases, homeowners may wish to change the layout of the kitchen or demolish one of the walls in order to make a combined space with the dining-room. All those operations normally require the help of professional contractors and are performed after drawing a corresponding plan by a designer. Alternatively, some people only want minor adjustments such as refinishing cabinetry or having a new backsplash. So, the scale of renovations is one of the factors that shapes the price. Other important considerations are the cost of materials and the size of the room.

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The average sum homeowners pay for remodeling their kitchen is $22,200. A room relatively small in area costs from $6,000 to $16,000 to renovate. $16,000 to $32,000 may be spent on remodeling a kitchen of a larger size with a greater number of changes. The most frequently reported budget is from $25,000 to $50,000. The variety of materials and the number of renovations are the greatest in this case. Finally, no more than 9 percent of homeowners can afford to spend $100,000 and more.

Price-related questions

How much do I have to spend on countertops?

Choosing a countertop depends on whether you're going to sell your house at a higher price or want to have a durable surface with an attractive pattern and color. If your objective is simply to create an impression, go for laminate which will cost you from $1,100 to $1,900 or solid surface such as Corian or Formica ($1,600 - $2,900). On the other hand, if you're interested in quality and durability, try tile ($1,000 - $3,900), stone such as granite ($3,000 - $7,100), or wood ($1,900 - $7,100). Other popular options include concrete ($2,500 - $5,500), metal ($1,900 - $7,100), and bamboo ($2,100 - $3,100) if you're environmentally aware. All those materials vary in the degree of maintenance and resistance to heat and tear and wear. Some of them can be installed by professionals, others (like tile) by homeowners themselves.

How much may I have to spend on appliances?

Purchasing and installing new appliances may certainly raise the overall value of a house. At the same time, buyers will almost never give a price even remotely close to the price of the expensive equipment in your kitchen. So, you should find the golden mean: your expenses vs. the required functionality and quality.

If you opt for an EnergyStar refrigerator or dishwasher — a high-end option that will reduce your electricity bill - prepare to spend from $300 to $3,300.

For a custom built-in appliance expect to pay much more ($1,500 - $11,000) plus some building expenses you may incur.

You can also buy expensive store equipment with numerous useful features for up to $5,500 or cheaper outlet appliances for $150 - $2,100. The latter may be "bare-boned" but can perform all the standard functions as long as their more expensive counterparts without breaking.

How much do I have to spend on cabinetry?

The cabinets in the kitchen represent another important price-forming variable. If a prospective buyer sees an old cabinet of an indistinguishable color with scratches all over its surface, the kitchen value will drop in an instant. The price for cabinetry may vary a great deal depending on its quality and style. Experts say, however, that few buyers are interested in brands, putting the aesthetic and functional aspects above all else. Just start selecting suitable cabinets as early as possible. You have several options here.

A fully custom cabinet of your dream may cost you from $550 to $1,700.

A semi-custom one, that is a stock cabinet with some tweaks to suit one's taste, can be bought from $200 to $1,100. You can also transform your old cabinets into new ones by refacing them, that is replacing their doors, handles, and fronts. That may cost you up to $10,000. The cheapest option is to purchase standard cabinets in furniture stores – from $100 to $500.

How much does it cost to replace flooring?

Top factors: total area of the kitchen and type of flooring. If your intention is to boost the price of your property, select more expensive options including hardwood (no less than $4000), stone ($1,500), or tile ($1,400). Cheaper flooring types such as vinyl ($900) and linoleum ($1,400) may not make a favorable impression on potential buyers. All those materials are not identical concerning the degree of maintenance they require. So, this last characteristic is probably crucial for those who are not planning to change locations.

How expensive is the electrical side of a remodeling project?

If the last time you replaced the wiring in your kitchen was a couple of decades ago, it's the right moment to do so: wires tend to wear over time and can no longer cope with the increased load from new kitchen appliances. Installing new outlets instead of old ones is highly advisable, too. Professional electricians normally charge by the hour. The typical range is $60-$110. The outlets and wires will cost $110 or slightly more.

What is the cost of replacing gas lines in my kitchen?

When moving your gas stove, you'll have to replace the gas lines as well. This is an expensive project and will not only require professional help (demolishing a wall to reach the line, removing the flooring, and other tasks), but also receiving the green light from the local authorities. Prepare to pay around $1,200 if you still want to install new gas lines.

How much does it cost to replace plumbing?

A new layout plan for your kitchen may assume rearranging the plumbing. Just like gas lines, this operation may become a heavy burden on your budget. Not only will you have to hire a professional plumber and purchase appropriate materials. You will also have to ask the local authorities to allow you to perform the work and connect your pipes to the main pipe. Expect to pay up to $1,600 for having the pipes replaced and $2,600-$3,100 for a drain installation. A thumbs-up from the city may cost you up to $700.

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What is the average cost of hiring a designer for the project?

Working with a certified kitchen designer is a recommended first step in the entire remodeling process. He/she has all the skills and knowledge to cover every detail of the future project and give you valuable advice based on his/her experience. To hire a designer will cost you in the range $50 to $80 per hour.

How much may it cost to have my kitchen windows moved?

You may have to pay form $1,600 to $4,600 for moving one window.

Information to check

Permits. Contact the city council to learn about any rules and regulations concerning remodeling projects. Depending on the scope of work, you may need to obtain permits for replacing plumbing, electrical wiring, gas lines, or changing the layout of your kitchen.

Contractors. Obviously, finding a reliable contractor is extremely important when it comes to the renovation work. You need to do a thorough online research or ask your friends who have remodeled their kitchens to give you their contractor's contact details. Compare at least 4-5 companies before you make the final choice. Seeing fees that are either too low or two high should put you on alert. The best time to start remodeling is after the winter holidays and before the spring begins. This is the most inactive period for contractors and they are willing to offer discounts then. Also, make sure the contractor has the appropriate license and insurance. You can find it out at your local building department.

Other frequently asked questions

How do I calculate the kitchen remodeling budget?

You may decide to renovate your kitchen for two main reasons:

  • 1. You're going to sell your house soon. So, you believe a new look of your kitchen will increase the price of the entire house.
  • 2. You're going to improve the "user" experience in your kitchen, making it more functional and aesthetically appealing as you're planning to live in the house for many more years.

Looking at these options, you should spend more when you're not going to sell your house in the foreseeable future.

As you will be using the kitchen equipment often, it must be of good quality to withstand the repeated use. On the other hand, splashing your money if you simply want a prospective buyer to be impressed by its outward appearance is not wise (option two).

In general, to know how much you should allocate to the kitchen renovation project, experts recommend taking the overall house price and subtracting 5-15 percent from it.

How can I save money on the project?

  1. 1. Think what work you can do with your hands. For instance, you may remove the cabinets and some appliances, as well as do some painting work prior to the arrival of the professionals.
  2. 2. You can select all or certain materials in stores and deliver them home yourself.
  3. 3. Consider buying standard appliances and furniture rather than high-end custom ones.
  4. 4. Try not to change the layout of the kitchen. Avoid moving the gas lines and water pipes to new locations.

Bottom line

Remodeling a kitchen is a serious affair. Depending on how much change you wish to make in this room, its size, and materials you intend to purchase, you may pay $22,200 on average. Most homeowners spend from $25,000 to $50,000.

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