Where was your money well spent?What could you have done without?

glitter_and_gunsJuly 19, 2013

I closed on a house in January knowing that the kitchen was going to need an update. The "bones" of the kitchen are good, and I find it a very comfy space in which to work. My initial plan was that I would tear out to the studs (removing a section of wall) and start over. Having lived in the house this long, I realize that I would really rather split my budget, doing an update to the kitchen, and taking every penny I don't spend to put into the pool area to construct an outdoor kitchen & ramada.

I know that I am going to slate the floors to all the common areas. Thankfully my favorite flooring is cost effective. I need counter tops (icky laminate now), new sink, new faucet, new backsplash, a bit of lighting, new hardware (there is none). I have "big box store" stove (slide in - not what I want) & dishwasher & built in microwave in stainless - I had intended to upgrade those, but think I could hang onto them. Then the cabinets become the question. They work well, are in good shape, and loaded with pull out shelves, spice racks, and all that stuff - they are golden oak and I can't stand the color - again I had intended to pull them out and buy all new... but... maybe with the gel staining they could stay. I don't want them to look like I SHOULD have upgraded them but got too tight with the purse strings.

So, help me out - where did you cut? where should you have cut? where do you regret cutting? What did you feel was a splurge but has been worth every penny? Things that you splurged on that you wouldn't do again? I refurbished a century home years ago, but the internet was not such a dominant force, so it was easy to not be sucked in by the latest counter edge cut, the edgiest trend in color, or the perfect light fixture important from foreign lands produced by recluses that only open their doors to send out light fixtures once a year for 3 days during the spring rains.

Thank you!

This post was edited by glitter_and_guns on Fri, Jul 19, 13 at 0:58

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If its only the color that you don't like and the layout, construction, etc are ok then I would try gel staining.

You were wise to live in the space for a while before starting a reno.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2013 at 9:59AM
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Can you post a picture of your current kitchen?
Gel staining can look really good, if you are looking for a darker look.
But, going back to your question. I am happy i have my subzero paneled fridge and paneled DW.
I have a small kitchen and there really isn't anything extra that I could do without.
Our budget did not allow for making our kitchen bigger. It was possible to go out three feet, but the expense was prohibitive.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2013 at 12:31PM
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Good topic. I kept the cabinets since they were high quality and I painted them (this meant not opening up the kitchen to the great room) and the lighting b/c it would have required a lot of drywall. I spent on the appliances, counters, and floor. To save money on appliances I shopped for months until I could hit a sale with a rebate. It's amazing what cleaning and paint can do.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2013 at 10:17PM
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We just moved in this month.

I removed the fake jennaire cooktop and micro/wall oven combo.

Installed a nice gas range and 600 cfm ducted hood. A clean smelling home is important and I hate lingering food odors.

We removed the Formica counters held together with scotch tape. Did oiled butcher block on the island where the cooktop had been. Did porcelain tile, which I had and loved in previous kitchen, for perimeter counters with new sink and faucet.
We are keeping the oak cabinets oak, as they are high quality.
I added new stainless pulls. I will be painting the trim and the doors to the room all in white.

I will eventually paint the island cabinets a washed black/gray color.

Goal is to be done for thanksgiving.

So to me, a good gas stove, good hood, and functional counters and a deep sink are what I think is important to make a kitchen a pleasure to use.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2013 at 9:08AM
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This is great info. I will be sure to post up pictures when I get a bit closer to the redo. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2013 at 7:58PM
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