19 April 2022

Planning a Kitchen Renovation? Here Are the Costs Involved

Emma McLaren
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They say two things sell houses - bathrooms and kitchens.

A freshly revamped kitchen space adds a touch of modernisation and a tonne of wow-factor.

But how much is it going to cost to revive that seemingly prehistoric meal prep area?

Here’s the scoop on what to consider before beginning a major makeover, alongside some surprisingly realistic kitchen renovation cost examples.

Does Size Make a Difference?

Absolutely!

With average completed costs of about $25,000 - $35,000 for your run-of-the-mill kitchen face-lift, it’s important to note that these are only averages.

Like everything reno-wise, square footage dictates price. Kitchens, especially, won’t ever be granted a pass on this, so considering how much kitchen you actually need first could help conserve those small-budget plans.

Kitchen Renovation Cost Examples - At a Glance

What you’re looking at below are costs determined primarily by size and quality/luxury. While your specific kitchen refurb may fall outside these cost parameters, they provide probable starting points for those less familiar:

  • Entry-level upgrade, less than 10sqm - $10,000 - $20,000

  • Standard upgrade, between 10 - 20sqm - $15,000 - $45,000

  • Premium/Luxury upgrade, more than 20sqm - $35,000+

Keen to Get Started? Consider These First

Following careful contemplation of our kitchen renovation cost examples comes the next deciding factors motivated by these three questions:

  • What do you want from the kitchen that it doesn’t already provide?

  • How can I improve its functionality?

  • Can I achieve its new aesthetics given its existing size and orientation?

1. Budget and Its Added Value Potential

How much have you set aside for this new kitchen?

If you don’t plan to stick around long-term, consider the home’s resale potential in your new kitchen’s outline.

A general rule of thumb is to spend about 5% of the property’s value restoring a kitchen to turn a profit from its next sale.

I’m after a quick refresh on the cheap. What are my options?

We get it. Not everyone has a spare $25,000 at the ready for renovations. However, there are still a few budget-savvy options to give that cooking corner a much-needed pop outside of these kitchen renovation cost examples.

You could try:

  • DIY Cabinet Restorations - Something as simple as replacing cupboard handles or even entire cabinet fit-outs will lift those appeal levels.

  • Brightening the Benchtop - A couple of rolls of decorative contact material you can ‘stick down’ over original benches meets the eye with unnoticeably fake luxury. Use them to resemble granite, wood, or a range of other benchtop design favs.

  • Purchasing a single, major appliance - It’s amazing how much difference a brand new, top-of-the-line refrigerator, dishwasher, or stove setup can make.

  • Cracking a paint can - Revitalise cabinets, splashbacks, and cover brickwork with an inexpensive coat of paint. This requires a bit of time, labour, and patience but is well worth the result for the cost.

2. Design & Layout Costs

Reconfiguring the design and essentially the foundations of the kitchen itself can be expensive. You’ll likely be looking at about the $30,000 base price mark due to additional council applications and other costs.

The first step would be to consult a licensed architect to submit a council permit application on your behalf. This reassures authorities that the proposed works comply with state regulations and safety standards.

It’s also an entirely different ball game regarding labour, materials, and construction effort all-round, leading to higher costs most certainly exceeding our initial kitchen renovation cost examples.

Size and shape will ultimately determine suitability, with most occupiers wanting optimal space and walking distance between their fridge, sink, and oven situated in a triangular layout.

Be prepared to top up your budget by about 15-20% should you decide to take this reno route!

3. Materials/Fit-Out Costs

Cabinets, benchtops, and finishes are the three main cost categories for kitchen materials.

Allocate about one-third of the budget for purchasing and fitting cabinetry. These can run you anywhere between $100 - $1,000 per cabinet, depending on whether they’re stock, semi-stock, or completely custom-made.

A shiny new surface finish will cost about 10% of your budget. You’ll pay according to square footage requirements, finish type, and thickness. It’s common to reserve the most luxurious choice for the smaller, island-like bench spaces and utilise the thinner, cheaper styles across lengthier sections.

Finishing touch-ups like splashbacks, cabinet handles, lighting, or tapware is where the fun really starts and where your budget’s, unfortunately, likely to expand. Allow anywhere from about $2,000 upwards for these combined.

4. Labour Costs

You might only be carrying out a minor remodelling project. However, that budget-consuming labour still wants to include itself.

Altering, disposal, and smaller installation costs all apply as usual, as well as factoring in for the unexpected.

Tradesmens’ time is a valuable commodity, and they know it! But the real bank-busters are the mid-project, unavoidable, unforeseen costs.

One restoration job often unveils an additional repair project; for example, stripping away tiles might reveal underlying plasterboard problems. Discoveries like this can easily send budgets soaring in no time, so it’s crucial to start off with a little extra cash at hand.

5. Installation Costs

In addition to standard building or labour bills come general installation costs of just about every component in your kitchen.

Depending on the renovation’s type, scale, and complexity, installation expenses can increase five-fold between the most basic revamp and the most premium packages.

You can pay anywhere between $100 to $500 just for each kitchen appliance itself to be fitted/installed. Remember, there’ll be sinks, flooring, wallpaper, ovens, cabinets, and more, running into thousands by the time you’re cooking your first meal!

I’ve Considered My Estimates. What’s Next?

Happy with the figures above? Then it’s time to start stripping that cooking space!

But have you set up an alternate kitchen while renovations happen? Outdoor entertaining areas work a treat for temporary cooking spaces.

You’ll also need to clear out your cabinets and cover surrounding furnishings or areas that dust or debris can damage.

And that’s it! You’re a step closer to that dream kitchen!

Happy Renos!

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