Determining a Kitchen Remodeling Budget

It is vital to determine a budget for any do-it-yourself project, and kitchen remodeling is not any exception.

A word of caution: I spent several hours researching kitchen remodeling cost and budgeting on the net to gather data because of this article. I ran right into a couple websites that gave square footage pricing for kitchen remodeling. Although I commiserate with their attempt to find a simple method to find out remodeling pricing, this kind of advice is not located in reality. Remodeling jobs in general are so specific to the conditions of the building and tastes of the homeowner that no square footage pricing will ever be realistic. I also ran into many sites that didn’t offer you any real information regarding establishing a budget but basically interpreted Hanley Wood’s Remodeling Cost vs. Value report which is published each year. You’re far better off visiting the Cost vs. Value report online and evaluating the results for yourself.

Like anything else nowadays a kitchen remodel will probably cost a lot more than you thought it could and the sky may be the limit on what it can cost based on your tastes. You can find multiple factors that get into determining a remodeling budget.

There are several places online you can go to help you establish a basic budget number to start with. My personal recommendation is Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report which is released by region and major city every year. Kitchen remodel concerning this report is that it gives a description of the “average” project so as to gauge if your kitchen remodel will probably fall above or below the benchmark. I also find their average pricing to be a precise reflection of the pricing for the company, so by recommending to clients before I even meet with them they investigate this report they are more likely to establish a realistic budget we can work within to give them a fantastic kitchen.

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While Remodeling Magazine’s report is quite helpful, it is still a very one size fits all approach to establishing a budget. Keep reading if you’d like to try to hone your numbers a little.

Get out a pad and paper and jot down a few notes about each factor as you go through this list:

Factor 1 Home Value- Consider not only what you think your property is worth, but also the value of similar homes in town that already have updates. The best website to check on home values is, simply enter your address and you get an interactive map with home values along with other information listed right on the map. Take note of which homes are of similar size to yours, have already been purchased more recently, but have a higher value, then peek within their windows to see what the house looks like. Ok, seriously, I was only kidding. If you don’t know them perhaps it’s time to meet the neighbors and ask for a quick tour.

Factor 2 Wow! – This has everything to do with your targets and motivations. Write down each motivational factor which is important to you in a kitchen remodel. Here are some possible examples: Kitchen is falling apart. You like to cook and the layout doesn’t suit you. You like to entertain and want to open up your kitchen as a place to assemble. You will want kitchen that wows your guests. You are getting ready to sell your home and the kitchen is really a sticking point with buyers… Now that you have your list, evaluate which motivations are most significant and relist them in motivational order. Imagining your budget starting in “the middle” take note of which factors might move the budget up or down…i.e. wanting to remodel to encourage a sale might move the budget down, remodeling to wow guest might max it out…etc.

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