Easy Kitchen Makeovers for Fraction of the Cost

written by: Mike Gosser

You can spend a lot of time and money for a designer kitchen or you can do a kitchen make over with a fairly minimal investment. I have done many of both, but I feel in this new economy, the make over is usually a good choice, if and only if the design and labor is done correctly.

I will describe the basic steps on how I transformed a thirty-five year old kitchen into a very beautiful updated kitchen.  The kitchen type is called a Galley kitchen; it has a straight row of cabinets, which functions as the work area. In this particular layout, the oven/range is adjacent to the cabinetry separated by a doorway. I believe by doing some basic replacements, we can create a more functional, visually appealing and cost controlled project at a fraction of what it would take to completely remodel the kitchen. The total budget for this makeover is $18,500.00.  For this cost, the outcome is quite impressive.

Five basic changes were made to produce this makeover.

1. New wood maple laminate flooring (removing two layers of old vinyl flooring).

2. Supply and install solid wood maple cabinet doors and drawer fronts (including new, full extension, ball bearing drawer glides, hinges and pulls).

3. The owner had ten inches of open wall space between the existing base cabinetry and the doorway trim at the end of the Galley run, where the owner kept a free-standing trash container. I decided to build a pull out trash can cabinet, therefore, the owner will have picked up an additional 10″ of needed counter space.

4. I also replaced the existing dated ceramic tile back-splash with a new stone/glass mosaic mix tile back-splash.

5. We also replaced the old and worn laminate counters with new quartz stone counters, a new under mount stainless steel sink and faucet. We decided to replace the garbage disposal, since we were replacing the counters. All other appliances are in good shape.

We first proceeded with this project by removing the existing vinyl flooring down to plywood sub-floor. We re-nailed the sub-floor to minimize any movement and squeaks. We scraped the existing tile off the walls. Keep in mind, sometimes you have to cut and remove the drywall to be able to remove the tile. Luckily, this type of removal was not needed. The existing cabinet boxes are made of maple, that had been previously painted, but in good condition, therefore, we decided to keep them and just paint a new coat. The new doors and drawer fronts will be stained and finished to match the new maple floor planks.

We proceeded to install the new glass/travertine stone tile back-splash, new laminate flooring , new quartz stone counters, sink, faucet, disposal, cabinet doors, drawer fronts and related hardware. We then installed  a new base shoe at all the base boards. The painting was done by owner. We provided a, ” ready to use”, cleaning of kitchen. In case your wondering we blue taped closed the cabinets to keep the dust out, during the demo part of project.

Before Pictures:

After Pictures:

Next week I will discuss windows, product choices, applications and costs.

Mike