How to Upgrade Kitchen Cabinets Cheap

by Eric Mack ; Updated July 27, 2017

Items you will need

  • Paint
  • Hardware
  • Sander
  • Screwdriver

It doesn't take much to change the look of your kitchen. If you are getting tired of looking at your kitchen cabinets but don't have the money to replace them, here are some tips to upgrade without going over budget.

Step 1

The easiest way to upgrade kitchen cabinets is to change your hardware. Go drastic. Are your current knobs old fashioned and country? Try modern and funky. Don't have hardware? Just drill holes into your cabinet and add them. You'll be surprised what a difference this will make in the overall appeal.

Step 2

Another inexpensive way that isn't too time consuming is to paint your cabinet doors. Yes, just the doors. The contrast with the rest of the cabinets can look really striking. Or just paint the cabinets and leave the doors as they are. Another option, use a stencil to add a design to the door. The possibilities are limitless

Step 3

Of course, if you have the time and inspiration, paint the cabinets. Pick a color that you can live with. If it is a small space be sure to use a bright color and make sure it coordinates with the rest of the kitchen, and house for that matter. Don't forget to sand and prime them first.

Step 4

Another quick fix to change the look of your kitchen cabinets is to take the doors off all together. You can take off one or two if you'd like. Make sure the contents are pretty enough to display and fill in the holes left from the hinges.

Step 5

For a little extra cash, you can keep the cabinets and replace the doors. Or you can take the doors to a professional and they can cut out the center and add glass, metal or cork.


  • Be sure to remove the cabinet doors before painting. Do some research in magazines and online before you purchase anything to get familiar with different designs.

About the Author

Eric Mack is a freelance journalist and radio producer who lives in Northern New Mexico with his wife and daughter. When he's not on one of his many extensive trips around the globe, you can find him hiking through the woods of the Sangre de Christo mountains with his dog and family in tow.

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