The Budget for Dan's Renovation

The Budget for Dan's Renovation

Sep 20, 2013

Name: Dan Bailey
Type of Project: Kitchen remodel
Location: East Boston, Boston, Massachusetts
Type of building: 2nd Floor Condo in a Greek-Revival Row House

The Renovation Diaries are a collaboration with our community in which we feature your step by step renovation progress and provide monetary support towards getting it done in style. See all of our Reno Diaries here.

You've heard all about Dan's terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad kitchen, and seen the inspiration for his kitchen remodel. In this post, we're answering the question on everyone's mind: how much is it going to cost?

From Dan:

When I bought my condo, I knew I wanted to replace the kitchen. Not only is it ugly, it's also located at the center of the apartment, right near the main entrance, which means that it's always on display. If I was going to update one room, I figured that renovating the kitchen would have the biggest impact on the apartment's overall livability, visual appeal, and resale value. With this in mind, I was prepared to invest some money in this space.

As I began looking into just how much money would be required, I quickly discovered that kitchen renovations can be astronomically expensive. I was fortunate to qualify for a mortgage that didn't require a 20% down payment. So I decided to withhold some of the money I had set aside for the down payment to go towards a new kitchen. These funds, combined with a conveniently-timed annual bonus from work, left me with a comfortable, but certainly not extravagant, budget. This will be the second-biggest chunk of cash I’ve ever spent at one time, right behind the down payment for the condo, which makes me a little nervous.

I'll be looking for ways to cut costs throughout the renovation. At the same time, I'm going through the trouble of a full renovation, so I may as well do it right, which means I'll try not to scrimp on quality. I’ll be doing as much of the work myself as I can manage, but I’ll leave the highly skilled work to the pros. I’m working closely with a carpentry contractor, who also happens to be my former downstairs neighbor. He’s worked on the building in the past and appreciates its age and history as much as I do, so he’ll be a great resource throughout the renovation. He’s even graciously offered to coach me through certain aspects of the renovation with which I have little experience. And even more importantly, he’s promised he won’t let me screw anything up.

So without further ado, here's the budget breakdown. At this point, a lot of these numbers are rough (hopefully high) estimates.

Budget Specifics:


    Plumbing, $800
    Electrical, $800
    Carpentry, $1500
    Sub Total: $3,100


    Building Permit, $300
    Electrical Permit, $50
    Plumbing Permit, $50
    Sub Total: $400


    Range, $1800
    Refrigerator, $1400
    Dishwasher, $689
    Range Hood, $500
    Sub Total: $4,389


    Sink, $370
    Faucet, $159
    Sub Total: $529


    Cabinets, $3000
    Countertops, $1500
    Cabinet Hardware, $365
    Sub Total: $4,865


    Floor refinishing, $500


    Tile, $125
    Paint and Plaster, $360
    Lighting, $500
    Sub Total: $985


    Miscellaneous Building Materials (lumber, drywall, caulk, screws...), $300


    Miscellaneous, $500

Total Budget:


Check out the full series (so far) and be sure to join us next week as Dan's renovation gets underway.

(Images and diary text: Dan Bailey)

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