Here’s a handy guide to help you start planning your kitchen budget, with tips on where to spend, save and manage your money throughout the project…
Coming up with your budget
When making a budget for your kitchen, you need to be as detailed as possible. Get a rough cost for everything, right down to the handles, screws and feet for your units. Don’t forget to get some quotes for labour costs, and always overestimate to avoid nasty surprises later.
Important: always build in a contingency fund. Kitchens nearly always come in over budget. It’s important to have the cash available to finish the room properly, or all your hard work will be wasted. You may not need your contingency fund, but it’s really nice to know its there.
Where to spend
Only you’ll know what really matters to you in your dream kitchen, but the key areas you really shouldn’t skimp on are:
- The fitting. Even if you spend a fortune on your kitchen units and appliances, a poor fit will let the whole room down. If the quote from the fitter is too good to be true, it probably is. Always use a reputable, experienced kitchen fitting specialist like A&J Kitchens, where you’ll get a competitive price and complete peace of mind that the finish will be absolutely perfect.
- Worktops and door/drawer fronts. These are the most visible parts of your kitchen, so they need to look good. You don’t need to spend a fortune on door fronts, as there are many great-looking affordable options out there. However, it is important to get a good worktop that meets your needs practically as well as delivering the look you want.
- Taps and handles. Again, you don’t need to break the bank here, but bargain basement taps and door handles may let the finish of your kitchen down.
- Appliances. These are functional, practical necessities, so quality is important.
- Lighting. Avoid super cheap light fittings, but more important than spending money on lighting is taking the time to plan it out properly.
The pricier elements of your kitchen out of the way, now it’s time to claw back some funds. You can save money by:
- Reducing the number of appliances you have – do you really need two built-in ovens, after all?
- Buying cheaper unit carcasses – these are hidden away, so they don’t need to be fancy
- Having fewer tiles – you don’t necessarily need to tile all the way up the walls, so save yourself some money and paint instead
- Look for ex-display kitchens – they’re often a fraction of the usual cost!
- Choosing a simple sink – provided it is big enough and fits with your kitchen, a relatively cheap stainless steel sink will do the job perfectly.