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Adding Affordable Value to your Kitchen

By Lee Cameron Published 11/29/2007 | Home Improvement

One way that we can increase the investment of our home is to carry out improvements ourselves. Before you groan that you can only plant pansies in the yard, consider this. The second  most profitable way to increase the value of your house is to renovate your kitchen. This does not necessarily mean that you have to rip out your whole kitchen and buy everything brand new. We are talking about AFFORDABLE  value, so let us investigate a few shortcuts.

Color is one of the cheapest and most high impact ways to change a home. Interior decorating is also the number one way to improve the salability of your home. In a kitchen if you do paint it, do not skimp on the quality of the paint. It is the one room where we will always be cleaning  off marks, finger prints and splashes.

Do not underestimate the power of pure white in a kitchen. It is clean and sparkling. It will also go with any color. If you want to get started, but you are still dithering over a focus color, start with white, the cleanliness will inspire you!.

The most noticeable parts of a kitchen are: sink, cupboards, floor and counter tops. These  are the areas to examine for your new look. Obviously, to replace everything with brand new is the ideal, so study each of these carefully and critically. If you are trying to improve your kitchen within  a budget, something's gotta give!

For instance, could your sink be improved by re-caulking and just replacing the faucet with a nice modern set?

How about a back splash? Changing (or adding) a tiled backslash behind your sink serves several purposes. It takes away the focus from your sink and it is practical. If you do not want to stay neutral, it also allows you to bring in your color scheme and it can be extended, according to the design of your kitchen. It is also a very inexpensive 'face-lift'. Because of the relative cheapness, you could make it a luxury touch and incorporate the new glass-effect or natural 'field' tiles.

Kitchen cupboards are a very expensive outlay which can be cleverly avoided in most cases. They can be painted or revamped using an intense color stain gel. Also, many companies advertise that they will replace your cabinet doors (ONLY doors) for a very modest fee. These new kitchen cabinet door fronts can be as reasonable a 20.00, although an oak door can start nearer to 30.00. This idea will considerably lower the cost of a new look for your kitchen.

If the kitchen is dark you can order white doors, or if you want luxury, you can order cherry doors, or anything in between. As most of us have had to learn how to use a screwdriver, this will be an improvement that you can manage on your own. An easy way to brighten up a kitchen is to add strip lighting units beneath your wall cabinets. These can be bought cheaply,  just pay attention that the  wiring does not look messy.

Improving a floor need not be as expensive as you think. While linoleum is still pricey, the acrylic floor tiles that look like Italian ceramics can be found as cheaply as 1.00 per foot. (One tile  measures 12" x 12") Colored dyes can now be bought for the grout, to give  a tiled effect or to just keep it plain.

Well,   the counter top had to be dealt with at  the end. Yes, there is a budget way to spruce up your counter top, but this is one area where you may have to bite the bullet! First let us examine one of the ways to save your counter top.

One way is  by re-coating the existing top, to use the word 'paint' would be to over-simplify. There is much prep work, including cleaning with detergent and with alcohol, fine sanding between all coats of primer and top coats of oil based paint. Then finally several finishing coats  of marine varnish (or polyurethane is a second best option).

Once completed, you must always use a chopping board and do not place hot pots directly onto the counter. These are rules that we often follow for our laminate surfaces as well. The ever-faithful laminate counter top is getting some competition these days from the granite gang. The gang comprises of   granite and other real stone countertops and also top quality look-alikes to choose from. If you are choosing a new counter top on a budget, then granite is not the least expensive option!

If you are still in the planning stage, then start to collect a file of ideas for kitchen decor. A piece of squared graph paper will help you plan within your true measurements.

Although a kitchen renovation can be a costly venture, it can also be fun and very rewarding. At the end of all your work, you will have a bright clean kitchen to work in and you will have improved your investment. Money spent on the kitchen is most likely to show the best financial return on resale of your home. Experts say that up to  75% of your expenditure will be returned to you via the increase in sale price.

Provided by the writing team of Lee Cameron. Lee is one of the top real estate professionals working in the Orlando real estate market. If you're looking to invest in Heathrow FL real estate, visit  www.leecameronrealtor.com today!