DIY Kitchen Remodel: How I Remodeled My Kitchen For Less Than $2,000

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If you’re a fan of HGTV or other home shows, seeing remodeled kitchens that transform a dated space into a dream kitchen is pretty much standard fare.

Their ideas are great if you’re interested in kicking your cooking space up a notch. But if yours is a home valued well under $100K, then a kitchen remodel may seem way out of your league.


A kitchen remodel can be the most daunting project in your home when it comes to making modern updates. The cost of cabinets, appliances, and plumbing for starters can run into astronomical figures real quick!

However, it doesn’t have to be that way if your goals are modest and your needs simple.

I recently completed a top to bottom kitchen remodel, while keeping my budget in the $2,000 range.

Of course I did the work myself. But I can assure you I’m just an average home owner with mediocre skills at best. The key is to keep your eye peeled for sales, bargains, and low prices.


Details Of My Low-Budget Kitchen Remodel

First, I identified the products I needed:

  • Appliances I chose were smaller apartment sized, mostly because of space restraints. The smaller appliances can be plain-Jane models, with zero bells and whistles. They cook … they refrigerate. That really is all you need, and they will likely outlast loaded up appliances with a bunch of fancy features. If your budget allows, some of the smaller-sized models can include those luxury features if you want them.
  • The cabinets were stock models that came unfinished. A quick rub down with some sandpaper, and a coat of clear polyurethane, and they turned into very respectable oak cabinets, complete with drawers. I chose to leave them with no hardware, but that is an option if you choose.
  • The pre-made Formica countertops were stock off the shelf lengths all set to be glued and held to the base cabinets with some clamps (here’s how). They aren’t fastened to the walls, they can be moved out for cleaning when needed. Total cost for cabinets and countertops came to about $700
  • The savings were great because the vinyl floor was the last item to be installed when I stumbled upon a closeout sale of $.39 a sq. ft. Here are some tips for installing vinyl flooring in the kitchen.
  • The water heater in the corner, and the pressure tank mounted below it disappeared behind a simple sheetrock and 2’x4′ closet-like enclosure. An $11 shower curtain hung on a closet rod provided the simplest way to make it all look neat and clean. If this is the first water heater you’ve ever bought, here’s how to choose a water heater.
  • Sheetrock is the quickest and cheapest way to put a wall where you need it. Don’t be concerned about doing a perfect job taping, mudding joints, and mudding screw heads. You don’t have to be a Master Plasterer to make it look nice. Any minor imperfections won’t likely be noticed by anyone, and you can add a coat of paint to make everything look new and crisp!


The End Result

My local home center provided everything I needed, and this kitchen remodel project was completed over a period of time — which allowed me time to look for sales and items on closeout before I purchased them.

Mine was a second home, a cabin in the country. Fancy just wouldn’t have made sense — both for the aesthetics of the setting or the financial investment required.

What I ended up with was a simple, clean, inexpensive, and (most importantly) functional remodeled kitchen.

By doing it myself and shopping modestly, it was mission accomplished — on a budget!


Before photos:

kitchen remodel before 2 kitchen remodel water heater


After photos:

kitchen remodel

new countertop and cabinets


More Tips For Your Kitchen Remodel On A Budget