Want a new kitchen on a small budget?

by |December 6, 2017

Dubbed ‘Australia’s Renovation Queen’, Cherie Barber has released a book and we can’t wait to get our hands on it! Renovating For Profit is a highly practical, illustrated book that renovators will love.

The book is full of amazing before and after photos taken by the wonderful photographer Richard Mortimer, and here is an exclusive taste. Below is an extract from the chapter Killer Kitchens!

Renovating for Profit by Cherie Barber.KILLER KITCHENS
(Exclusive Extract)

So, we’ve come to the kitchen, which just happens to be the most important room in your home for adding value … No pressure!

The heat is on because this room has so many elements and is heavily used every day. Given how hard this room has to work, it shouldn’t be a surprise that a well planned and executed kitchen will add enormous value to a home.

Basically, this room is your money maker, according to bank valuers – it’s the one room they pay particular attention to (along with your bathroom). These two rooms also happen to be the most expensive to renovate, and rightly so. They have a lot of stuff in them!


For your kitchen, allocate a budget of no more than 2 per cent of your home’s current property value. Not what you bought the property for, but what it’s worth today. If you don’t have any idea what your property is worth, simply look at real estate websites for local comparable sales.

For example: if your home is currently worth $600,000, your kitchen renovation budget should be no more than $12,000, fully finished, inclusive of all materials, fixtures and fittings and trade labour. Everything, basically! If you’re disciplined enough to stick to this formula, you’ll greatly minimise your chances of overcapitalising.

Once you’ve set your budget, breathe easy … I’ve got some great money-saving ways to make your kitchen look great, without costing the earth. I’m all about maximum impact with minimum spend. And that doesn’t mean bad quality either. You should take immense pride in the quality aspect of any place you’re renovating. It is, after all, someone’s home.

Believe it or not, you can transform an entire kitchen for less than $2000. I’ve even done a fully finished kitchen makeover for just $991! See my kitchen reno on pages 124 and 125 for a kitchen that was transformed for just $2021. So I don’t want to hear any excuses, OK?



This kitchen was renovated on a minuscule budget of less than $1500. I simply swapped the laminate benchtops over to timber. I laminate-painted the base cabinets a funky new colour, added some low-cost Ikea accessories, a simple venetian and a chunky light. It’s the little things that count.



Brown timber everywhere. The owner of this home couldn’t bear to throw this kitchen out. You see, it was her wedding gift, from her late husband, who built it for her with his bare hands. Aww … where can I find a man like that? While it would have looked great in its day, it’s now looking more like a sauna! Somebody get me a towel.


The power of paint is beautifully demonstrated here in this refreshed and renewed beauty. I laminate-painted the cupboards, resurfaced the benchtops and stainless steel–painted the rangehood. Vinyl floor planks completed the look, all done for just $993. This kitchen is now suitable for steaming veggies, not yourself. And we still keep hubby’s memory alive.


First things first. If your kitchen layout is good but your kitchen looks drab, a simple cosmetic update might be all you need to bring your kitchen back to life.
Start with the cupboards. How are they looking? If the cabinetry is a terrible colour, you can easily paint those babies back to beautiful again. Laminate paint will be your new best friend.


So much yellow. While this might have been the height of fashion at some point, the colour of this kitchen was really showing its age. I knew I had to drag my bag of cosmetic tricks out. Work it, honey …


This spring chicken now sparkles from top to bottom, after a budget-busting makeover. I did this one with my younger sister, Jeneane, in just two days for $2021, inclusive of brand spanking new appliances.

Renovating For Profitby Cherie Barber

Renovating For Profit

by Cherie Barber

At last a highly illustrated, practical book that renovators will love.

Cherie Barber is Australia's leading renovation expert with over 21 years of profitable renovations under her belt.

Renovating for Profit reveals Cherie’s secrets to success and equips you with all the tips and knowledge you need to renovate and make a profit. Including information on...

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