In 2020, more than half of Canadian homeowners renovated their homes for reasons that had nothing to do with increasing the resale value, according to the RE/MAX 2021 Renovation Investment Report: they just wanted to live more comfortably and safely. Of course, if you’re living – truly living – in your home, you’ll be spending plenty of time in the kitchen. So if you want to make that the perfect place to hang out in, how much should you actually budget for your kitchen reno? And is a budget kitchen renovation possible? Here are some answers.
Published Oct 22, 2021, Updated Feb 8, 2022
How Much to Budget Overall: From $13,000
A ballpark figure for how much to budget for a kitchen reno is about 10 to 15 percent of your home’s total value. You can stretch it to as much as 25 percent if you’re planning on staying in the home for more than five years. In terms of actual numbers, you should put aside about $13,000 to $19,000 for minor renovations, $20,000 to $39,000 for mid-range and at least $40,000 for major renovations.
Average Kitchen Reno Costs in Canada: $30,944
According to home improvement company HomeStars, the average kitchen renovation in Canada costs $30,944, or $195 per square foot. If you look at the cost of renovations for every room in your home, kitchen renos are the most expensive: homeowners say they spent between $16,402 and $45,618 – or between $97 and $326 per square foot – on this part of the house.
Overall Cost for a Small or Condo Kitchen: $6,500 to $26,000
You now know more or less what costs to expect per square foot but do you know what this actually means for your kitchen? A small or condo kitchen is usually up to 70 square feet. You can expect to spend between around $6,500 and $26,000 to give your small kitchen a makeover.
Overall Cost for a Medium-sized to Standard Kitchen: $19,000 to $52,000
A medium-sized kitchen can be a 10 by 10 kitchen. As the name implies, that’s a space of 10 feet by 10 feet: or 100 square feet. To renovate a kitchen this size, you can look at roughly $19,000 to $52,000. A Standard Kitchen Size is closer to a 12 by 12, or a space of between 150 and 175 square feet. For a kitchen this size, you should budget between $26,000 and $52,000.
Overall Cost for a Large Kitchen: From $40,000
A large kitchen is typically one that is at least 200 square feet in size. For a kitchen this size, you can usually get away with a budget of between $40,000 and $78,000 but if you’re looking at upscale renovations, you’ll need at least $100,000 in your budget.
Appliances: From $130 Per Appliance
For a small kitchen reno on a budget, you should expect to spend between $130 and $260 per appliance. For a mid-range makeover, $200 to $400 per appliance should do the trick while for a major overhaul, you should look at a minimum of $520 per appliance. Knowing where to splurge and save with kitchen appliances can help you make the important budget decisions.
Cabinets: From $130 Per Cabinet
You can completely change the look of your kitchen simply by changing the cabinets. For a small, budget kitchen renovation, you need between $130 and $260 per cabinet. A mid-range reno will require between $260 and $390 per cabinet and for a major reno, you can look at between $390 and $650 per cabinet.
Countertops: From $260
The countertops can make or break your kitchen. The right countertops can even increase the value of your home. Costs here vary widely because there are so many different materials you can use. For a small kitchen reno, think $260 to $650; for a mid-range reno, $400 to $1,300; and for a major reno, $1,300 to $3,200.
Flooring: From $780
Want to know how to renovate a kitchen on a tight budget? Think carefully about the kind of flooring you want to use. You want heavy-duty materials that can take the wear and tear that comes with the spills, steam and fluctuating temperatures in a kitchen, though, so don’t go too cheap. For a small reno, look at between $780 and $1,300; for mid-range, between $1,300 and $1,900; and for a major reno, between $1,900 and $3,900.
Faucets: From $160 Per Faucet
Faucets are another area where you can save money with your kitchen reno by choosing less expensive materials. If you also want to save money on your water bill in the long run, opt for aerated faucets. For a small reno, you should budget between around $160 and $260 per faucet; for a mid-range reno, between $260 and $390 per faucet and for a major reno, between $300 and over $750 per faucet.
Sink: From $130
When it comes to renovations, most people think of everything but the kitchen sink. But when you’ve had a sink that’s too small, stains too easily or is an awkward shape to clean and you’ll immediately notice the difference a good sink makes. For a small reno, budget between $130 and $325; for a mid-range reno, between $250 and $520; and for a major reno, between $520 and $780.
Backsplash: From $150
Backslashes are one area where you can have lots of fun with colour and texture but be sure to choose backsplashes with staying power. For a small reno, you can expect to pay between around $150 and $520; for a mid-range reno, between $500 and $1,040; and for a major reno, between $1,040 and $1,500.
Painting or Wallpaper: From $130
One of the main secrets to how to renovate a kitchen on a budget is to see what you can do yourself without botching it. And one thing that just about anybody can do is to add a coat of paint or hang some wallpaper. For a small kitchen reno, expect to pay between $130 and $260 for paint or wallpaper; between $260 and $520 for a mid-range reno; and between $520 and $780 for a major reno.
Labour: Cost Varies
There are some areas of a kitchen reno that are best left to the professionals. Their fees vary widely, so get multiple quotes. Architects normally charge around $130 to $160 per hour. Kitchen designers and general contractors normally charge between 10 and 20 percent of the total project cost. For plumbers, think around $70 to $85 per hour; for electricians, $85 to $110 and for carpenters, around $90. You also need to pay for the cost of materials.
The Factors That Affect Costs
It’s not only the size of the kitchen the extent of the reno, the materials used and the labour costs that affect the overall cost. You also need to take into account factors like the age of your home; the time frame; building permits; the complexity of the project; the city you live in and even access to the property. Budget for 20 to 25 percent more than you think you’ll need and take comfort in the fact that there are tax rebates, benefits and grants you can get for renovating in Canada.