The Smart $40,000 Kitchen Makeover

Smart strategies to help you get more for your $40,000 budget. Think high-end appliances that will earn their keep.

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Hide CaptionShow CaptionA good kitchen is always a good investment.

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Best for: Someone who plans to stay in their house three to seven years. At this price point, think about investing in cutting-edge, brand-name appliances and cabinetry with add-ons, like rollout shelves. "To stretch your dollars, pick one area of the kitchen to really splurge on at this price range," says editor Janice Anne Costa.

Decorative options like glazes and moldings make stock cabinets an attractive choice. Installation is important as well; consider raising low-hanging cabinets up another six inches to allow for undermounted appliances or racks for stemware to save interior cabinet space. If you have the room, install an island, which will offer additional storage and provide more counter space for a cooktop or small prep sink.

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