Tacoma Converted Garage // Moody Kitchen: What It Cost (+ Budget Tips)


Now that the Tacoma kitchen renovation is done, we’re breaking down the budget. And I have to admit, even I was surprised at the final number. It’s much less than I thought, considering what a big transformation this was.

psst: Pin this post for later reference

Kitchen renovations are expensive. We’ve all heard it before. And while it’s usually true, Garrett and I are firm believers that beautiful kitchens can also be reasonably priced. And here’s proof:

Budget Breakdown

$3,700 Appliances*

$2,244 Cabinets

$500 Granite Countertops

$790 Live-edge wood countertop

$50 Cabinet hardware

$199 Sink

$135 Faucet

$415 Lighting

$150 Electrical

$100 Plumbing

$1,000 Concrete Floor refinish

$100 Paint

$100 Incidentals

$9,483 Total**

*Appliance total includes Kitchen Aid gas range, which is a stand-in for the electrical range Naysa has on order

**I didn’t include the staging items in the budget (rug, art, etc) since they’re not part of the renovation, but they’d be in the range of $500-$750.

I’ve linked to a few of our other kitchen budgets at the bottom of this post and there are definitely a few consistent ways that we’ve saved money on all of these renos. Read on for 8 tips for saving money on a kitchen renovation.

Tips for Saving Money on a Kitchen Renovation

One // DIY Everything You Can. You probably saw this one coming a mile away. Garrett and I are big believers in doing work ourselves because it saves money, teaches valuable skills, and controls the end product. The only thing that was hired out for this kitchen was sanding and polishing the original concrete floors.

Two // Splurge on one High Impact Item and Save on the Rest. I’ve talked about this philosophy before (at the Porch House powder bathroom), but it’s done well by us. In this space, we splurred on the live-edge countertop and saved on stock cabinets and inexpensive hardware, among other things.

Three // Lighting. I like to use a mix of sconces and overhead lighting and use my high-low philosophy here. The lights that are the most visible and impactful are worth spending on (we often buy from Rejuvenation and the sconce on the post here came from Pottery Barn) and the rest of the lighting can be pretty inexpensive (basic can lights for this kitchen).

Four // Look for second-hand, refurbished, or out-of-the-box Items. We like to buy our appliances at scratch and dent sales. Sometimes that means a literal dent (did you notice the big one on the fridge?) but often times there’s nothing visually wrong with the appliances they’re just out-of-box or display items. We also look for sales, items that are refurbished, or materials that are original to the space (like the tongue-and-grove paneling on these walls).

Five // Backsplash (or lack thereof). Speaking of the tongue-and-grove panelling, we saved big time on money and time by skipping a tile backsplash. Instead, we clad the backsplash with salvaged tongue-and-groove paneling and spent $0 on it. Another option: use the stock 4″ stone backsplash from the countertop supplier and skip the tiles (like we did at the Porch House kitchen).

Six // Stock Cabinets. I’d love to splurge for custom cabinets, but it’s often not in the budget, especially for a rental. So we try to make stock cabinets look better with a few tricks, including adding a beefier toe-kick, painting the cabinets, and adding a soffit. You can read all of our tricks in this post.

Seven // Keep the Design Simple. This tip is pretty intuitive: having less things in your space means spending less money. Simple, minimal spaces simply cost less to build. I’m not sure this kitchen qualifies as minimal, but it is certainly simple, both in the layout and the design.

Eight // Plan Ahead! Planning ahead can save you a ton of money in shipping fees, rush order, sale prices, and well, everything. While this kitchen came together in 5 weeks, the planning started months before and it helped us flush out what was worth spending money on and what wasn’t.


Sources are all linked here.

Related Posts

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