The kitchen is often the most expensive room in the house to remodel. I’ll show you our kitchen remodel cost breakdown including sources, before and after pics, and where we saved versus splurged. We hired a contractor for the work because we were on a tight schedule to get moved out of our previous house.
This kitchen remodel cost breakdown could be significantly less if you are able to DIY some of the work yourself. However, we didn’t have that option and we were already using the contractors for the rest of the house projects.
Since every room, wall, and floor needed some amount of work, we hired a general contractor for everything. That’ll be another post in itself and I’ll show you where we went wrong with the contractor we chose.
If you’re just starting out, check out the step by step guide for planning a kitchen remodel.
A Few Before and After Pics
Here are a few before and after pics so you can get an idea of the layout we are working with and why we chose certain things over others.
Kitchen Remodel Cost Breakdown
Budget for the Remodel
The short answer for the kitchen remodel cost breakdown is around $12,000 USD – this includes the contractor fees, labor, materials, and materials we had to purchase ourselves.
This included the following work the contractor would do:
- Remake all kitchen cabinet doors with shaker-style doors
- Install new sink and faucet
- Relocate the refrigerator to the other side of the room (this included framing a new cabinet for it)
- Build the peninsula where the refrigerator was previously. Add drawers for storage on one side and a cabinet on the other.
- Reconfigure the existing pantry to make room for the refrigerator and add a pantry door
- Add an upper cabinet to the left of the stove (we had issues with this as we discussed many times, but it was forgotten by the contractor)
- Add trim to the top of the cabinets to close a gap that was present
- Paint all walls, ceiling, and cabinet doors
- Install 50 square feet of quartz countertops
- Add a tile backsplash
- Install new hardware on cabinets and drawers
Because the existing cabinets were in good shape, we were able to save a good bit of money by just having new doors made.
Our initial quote from the contractor for the kitchen was around $9200. However, we upgraded the countertops to a more expensive option that added another $900.
We were quoted 50 square feet of “level 1” quartz. Apparently, Level 1 Quartz is very basic at the store we had available and only comes in two colors that we don’t like. So we upgraded to Diamond White quartz for an extra $900. This was a huge chunk of the budget, but one I’d splurge on if I did it again.
And with the items we purchased ourselves, we’re in the $12,000 USD mark at this point.
And for reference, we had another quote from a different contractor for the same items and it came in at around $15,000 USD. It’s always a good idea to get a few quotes before committing.
Items Not Included in the Contractor Budget
These items were NOT included in this quote because we purchased them separately and I included links later in the post:
- Pantry Door
Those items were around $650 at the time of purchase.
In addition, there were several miscellaneous items that we had to purchase like the drain covers for the sink. Those were around $75. Then there was a cabinet that the contractor “forgot” we wanted so we had to pay an additional $1000 for that cabinet at the end.
The paint is also not in this estimate because the whole interior and exterior of the house were being painted so that was a separate item on the budget.
Products for Our Kitchen Remodel
Here are the specific products in our remodel – unfortunately some have increased in price since 2021.
- Brass Faucet – this one from Amazon was the most affordable option I could find with the look I wanted. We’ve had it nearly a year and I love it – 100% would buy it again.
- Pendant Light – I wanted a smaller light that wouldn’t block the window and I loved the retro vibe of this one. It’s a bit tricky to put it together, but my husband did it.
- Cabinet Hardware – these are crazy affordable and they look amazing. I bought three packs of 10 for the whole kitchen.
- Sink – I love this sink and it’s beautiful, but I wouldn’t choose a white sink again. And the drain covers we chose are black and are already scratched in some areas.
- Pantry Door – I wanted one with an etched surface so you can’t see my messy pantry inside. At the time we purchased in October 2021, it was $268 for a 24×80 door. It’s since increased to $422!
- Tile for Backsplash – we wanted a classic large subway tile in white and this was the most affordable option
- Rug – Ours is about 3×6, but make sure to find that fits your space best. I really recommend a washable rug for a kitchen!!
- Cabinet Paint Color is Benjamin Moore Pale Oak, Walls, trim and ceiling is Sherwin Williams Pure White – Get a Sample of Pale Oak here.
What is the Largest Expense for a Kitchen Remodel?
Easily the largest expense will be the cabinets or appliances if you have to replace them. We got lucky here because we brought our current refrigerator from our previous house and the rest of the appliances were fine to continue using.
If you need to replace all cabinets, expect to spend an additional $4000-8000 USD depending on the type you choose. Expect several thousand if you choose to buy all new appliances as well.
Items Worth The Money for a Kitchen Remodel
There are a few things we splurged on that I don’t regret.
First, adding the peninsula. This gave us much-needed storage with extra drawers and a cabinet on the backside. It added more square feet for countertops which added more expense but gave me more counter space to work on.
It also gave us room for two small barstools so the kids can eat breakfast there if they want. And people tend to congregate in the kitchen so it added space for that.
Adding the peninsula cost me pantry space, but I’d still choose it. We shop weekly for groceries and don’t tend to buy in bulk anyway.
The second is having new cabinet doors made. I didn’t like the previous style at all and I’m so happy we decided to get shaker-style doors made.
And lastly, the countertops. They were a big portion of the budget, but I’ve wanted white quartz countertops for years and I love them. I’d definitely choose them again.