17 Small Kitchen Updates with Big Impact

Upgrading your kitchen in small ways can mean a better return if you’re looking to sell. Many times, a house purchase decision is made on the look and function of the kitchen, so even tiny upgrades can make a big difference.
Take a look at these 17 ideas for easy and fast kitchen upgrades!

1. Chopping blocks on wheels

SaveEtsy441Laird ThompsonWoodworking ideas
If you have a cozy, casual kitchen that you’d like to add some interest to, how about a butcher-block counter on wheels? You can move it around as you need it, and the look is more homey than a built-in cabinet-based island. The more the butcher block is used, the more rustic it will look. And you’ll have more storage space, too!

2. Rack your cookware

Savefrom volang.elleinterior.se315Little CopenhagenScandinavian Interior ideas
Evoke an earlier era by displaying your pots on a copper pipe rack. Simply measure the space where you’ll put the rack, and gather some copper pipe plumbing parts from your local hardware store. Put the pieces together after polishing them with brass polish, and you’ll have a unique place to hang your cookware that was created in minutes!

3. Upgrade your backsplash

Savefrom Uploaded by user22718Robin GerstenFor the Home
If you don’t want to put the time and effort into a tile backsplash, but you need to update your kitchen’s look, take a look at the wide range of solid surface materials at your local home store. One or two sheets should be all you need to create a beautiful backsplash that matches the style of your kitchen. (Inexpensive beadboard is a favorite!) 

4. Paint your cabinets

SaveHome Stories A to Z62372Marilyn Espinosahome projects
If a full cabinet replacement isn’t in the cards, paint those cabinets! All you need to do is clean them thoroughly with a strong cleaner, and then paint! If you’re feeling up to the task, change out the hardware for a new finish, and add new cabinet and drawer pulls.

5. Modernize your sink

Savefrom modulnova.com1641205The little bunny by Lory OstosInterior design
If your kitchen sink has seen better days, replace it and your faucet with brand new, modern versions. This will update the look of your kitchen for just a small investment in cash, and is easy for any DIY-er to accomplish.

6. Pull-down faucets

Savefrom plumbingoverstock.com3Sarah WalkingshawCabin
Speaking of faucets, upgrade to a pull-down kitchen faucet. They’re easy to install, only require one hand to operate, and will give your kitchen a more modern appearance.

7. More efficient dishwashing

Savecompactappliance.com38929Ann-Marie WalshLiving Small
Replacing your dishwasher with a new, Energy-Star appliance will show a big difference in your electric and water bills. And, it’ll use less water! Installation can be done yourself with a few tools and a little bit of elbow grease, so you won’t even have to hire a plumber or electrician.

8. Organize base cabinets

Savewww.kitchensource.com112Natalie SuarezJP And Natalies Fav Kitchens
Upgrade your kitchen storage by installing pull-out shelf organizers in the base cabinets. It’s an inexpensive way to modernize your cabinets while utilizing all the available space efficiently. 

9. Spices are the kitchen’s medicine

Savefrom phisick.com317Tal GonenMal de Mer
If you find a great antique medicine chest at a tag sale or estate sale, refinish it to use as a unique spice rack, or a place to hold keys. Refinish with chalkboard paint, and you have a great place for family messages.

10. Let there be light

Savefrom Uploaded by user68461Buzzbolt Electric LimitedKitchen Reno Ideas
Upgrade the lighting in your kitchen with easy-to-install under cabinet light options. These are easy to retrofit into existing cabinets, and will create bright white lighting to cook and bake by. Just make sure you cut the power to the breaker first, or food won’t be the only thing cooked.

11. Translucent backsplash

SaveMineral Tiles678April Merckxhome styling/ home inspiration
Build a completely new backsplash of translucent glass tiles. These come in sheets that are around 12 inches square, and are easy to install. Many shapes, sizes, and colors are available, and with the new urethane-based grout, you won’t have to worry about sealing!

12. Water is life

SaveCrystal Quest Water FiltersCrystal Quest®Products
How’s your water? Installing an under-the-sink water filtration system will increase the value of your home to those worried about the purity or taste of tap water. 

13. Open shelving

SaveHGTV291092423Kat KristarJoanna and Chip Gaines (Magnolia Homes)
An easy kitchen trend to implement is open shelving. Mount an open plate rack on the wall, and your dishes will be easy to locate without being in the way or taking up counter space.

14. Cozy cork flooring

SaveApartment Therapy254Nicole Newmanwhere the heart is.
Is your old kitchen linoleum looking tired and worn? Replace it with natural cork, which is cozy and warm on the feet, and can be “floated” right over your existing floor! What could be easier?

15. Rugs to the rescue

Savedomino.com194jessica lynnApartment ideas
If you’re not up to replacing the floor, add a large rug to cover most of the kitchen space. Keep the colors bright for a fresh look, and keep the pile low for easy cleaning.

16. Spiffy up the stock cabinets

SaveDig This Design61Samantha RohloffDIY
Turn stock cabinets into a gorgeous sideboard with the addition of some molding, furniture feet, and cabinet and drawer knobs. Matching this to your existing kitchen cabinetry will create a cohesive look and additional storage space for linens, flatware, and cooking tools.

17. Plate matchmaker

SaveCrate&Barrel232Stacie Slaughter-GottschRestaurant decor. ideas
This seems overly-easy, but replace all your switch plates in the kitchen to one style, one color. It’s easy to overlook cracked or mismatched plates because we’re used to seeing them all the time. Replace them across the board and see what a big impact this little change makes.
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