Remodel Your Kitchen for $3,100
Some families give scarves for Christmas. Others give kitchen floors. “That’s seriously how our kitchen reno got started,” says Katherine Bailey, owner of a local design firm, Kat Bailey and Company. On December 26, 2011, five of Katherine’s relatives—including her dad, who works in commercial construction—arrived at the Baileys’ Birmingham, AL, home and began demolition on the cramped kitchen.
“At first the plan was just to redo the floor,” says Katherine’s husband, Clark, a traffic engineer. “But before we knew it, a whole remodel was in the works.” Katherine’s family completed the demo in a few days, then left Katherine and Clark to finish the job. “I worked for Katherine’s dad in construction during college, so I knew something about remodeling, but I also had to teach myself a lot,” says Clark.
Ten weeks, $3,100, and just one professional hire (a pro to put up drywall) later, the Baileys had a brand-new kitchen.
The cream cabinets and drawers (21 in all) are from Habitat for Humanity ReStore, a national chain that sells donated furniture, appliances, and building materials for a fraction of the cost. Total price: $600. New hardware for the cabinets was just $150. Katherine was able to use the old pulls, so she didn’t have to buy all new ones—a big money saver.
Katherine came across three long pieces of unfinished rubber-wood butcher block at a local salvage shop and scooped up all 26 feet for $350. They stained them Kona by Rust-Oleum, then put two along the back wall and the other on the island.
The Baileys bought all their appliances off Craigslist for a steal. The fridge, for example, was just $175. “Clark is kind of a research guru,” says Katherine. He set up alerts that notified him anytime someone in the area posted a stainless steel refrigerator—that’s how he snagged this one.
The base of the kitchen island is made from the same Habitat for Humanity ReStore cabinets, but since they were meant to go against a wall, the backs were unfinished. “We didn’t know how to solve that problem until, on a whim, I thought of galvanized metal roofing,” says Katherine. Two sheets were $40.
Four different brick styles make up the kitchen floor. Some had to be cut to size, so the couple rented a brick saw for $100. “People don’t use brick much indoors, but it’s indestructible and hides dirt like crazy,” says Katherine.