7 easy ways to refresh your kitchen

7 easy ways to refresh your kitchen

Does your kitchen need a facelift? A full kitchen remodel can be costly, but the rate of return for a minor renovation is typically around 85 percent (according to Remodeling’s 2023 cost vs. value national average). So, if a full remodel isn’t in the budget, here are 7 great minor renovations that can make your kitchen feel new:

Update your fixtures

Upgrading small fixtures can make a big impact. Swap out your faucet to a modern touchless model or upgrade your cabinet hardware.

Discover the magic of paint

A fresh coat of paint is a cheap way to update any space. Choose a great color for your walls and consider painting your cabinets, too. If you’re planning to DIY, take note that painting cabinets takes a lot of work to be done right and last the test of time. Do your research and be sure you’re committed before beginning.

Refresh your countertops

Sometimes, all a kitchen needs are new countertops to make it shine. Choose something easy to maintain like quartz, and if that isn’t in the budget, butcher block or laminate can be great options. Or choose both—a butcher block island paired with otherwise stone countertops can look great!

Focus on organization

Organizing your kitchen drawers and cabinets can help your kitchen function in a brand-new way. And finding smart storage solutions for items that usually live on your countertops will declutter your kitchen—giving it a fresh, clean look.

If you’re looking to make a bigger change, consider adding display shelving or pantry space if possible. Nearby small closets or unused wall space can easily be transformed into smarter storage using items such as hooks, hanging racks, or shelving.

Update your shades

Are your window treatments looking dated? Neutrals are a great, timeless option, but don’t be afraid to choose a bold fabric Roman shade or fun bamboo blinds.

Adjust your lighting

There’s nothing better than a light and bright kitchen! Poor light fixtures can outdate a space and make it feel small and dark. Consider updating your current light fixtures or adding new lights altogether. Adding under-cabinet lighting is an easy way to brighten up your space. 

Upgrade your appliances

Though this can be a more costly update, consider purchasing new appliances if yours are particularly outdated or inefficient. Appliances are a feature of your kitchen, so make sure they look nice, work properly, and keep your energy bills in check.

Don’t forget about your small appliances either. It might be worth it to upgrade that old toaster or coffee maker for a shiny new model if it’s in plain view every day.

Other budget-friendly options

If you’re working with a shoestring budget, consider smaller updates like buying new dish towels, hanging new artwork, adding some air-purifying plants, or simply focusing on cleaning and organizing your current space. It may even pay off to check your garage and attic for wood that could be used for new shelving or forgotten hardware that’s come back into style over the years.

The bottom line

Breathing new life into your kitchen doesn’t have to be a costly (and time-consuming) project. But before you begin making upgrades, do some research on the value of your home so you can choose fitting finishes and fixtures. For example, if you’re in a lower-value neighborhood, it may not be necessary—or bring any extra value—to pay for higher-end items like marble countertops or imported tile. That being said, if you’re making upgrades for yourself—do what makes you happy!