Spring is right around the corner, and with that comes spring cleaning, a time when many people clean out, remodel, and refresh their homes. When it comes to improving your home--whether to increase your resale value or just to enjoy your living spaces more--one of the most immediately rewarding upgrades you can make is to your kitchen. Although many kitchen upgrades and remodels can be pricey (upgrading kitchen appliances is rarely an inexpensive task, the average kitchen appliance remodel coming in at about $18,000), we’ve put together a list of budget-friendly kitchen updates that you can complete in just a few days that will improve the look and feel of your kitchen.

In the past when you had to choose cabinets, you only had two choices: wood or white. Nowadays, cabinetry runs the gamut of colors across the spectrum, so you can customize your cabinets to fit your exact design specifications. Without having to invest in a whole new set of cabinets, however, you can just repaint your existing cabinets for a quick refresh. You can buy a gallon of paint and completely change the look of your kitchen with only a few coats!

The least time consuming and probably the cheapest way to refresh your kitchen is to replace your existing pulls and handles with more modern options. Nowadays, handle pulls aren’t just at Home Improvement stores; you can find them at World Market, Amazon, and even Target! For an, even more, cost-effective option, grab a can of spray paint and clearcoat, and you can repaint your existing handles to look brand new.

Along with (or instead of) repainting your cabinets, consider revamping your actual kitchen walls. Opt for more modern and neutral colors, like light gray, light blue, or tan. If you already have neutral or white walls, consider adding an accent wall in a dark or bold color to mix things up.

If you’ve watched HGTV lately, you’ll know that backsplashes are all the rage right now. Installing a tile backsplash can run you anywhere between $5 and $20 per square foot plus all the other equipment that goes along with it. Or, you can go a cheaper and much more accessible route by grabbing a tiled wallpaper that looks just like the real thing for $2 - $10 per roll. Installing wallpaper is easier, cheaper, and looks just as good!

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Replacing your kitchen floor is a tremendous time and budget investment, so if you’re looking for a cheaper version, consider shopping for an accent rug or a couple of non-slip mats in complementary or contrasting colors to give your kitchen floor a new look. Pro tip: consider putting an anti-fatigue mat in areas where you spend a lot of time standing, like in front of the sink or stove.

Take some of the blah out of your kitchen by adding fun new color elements throughout your space. Think of small appliances (like a standing mixer, teapot, and even your toaster) as both functional and design elements, so instead of the standard black or stainless steel, opt for a more colorful version. You can also add colorful vases to hold your kitchen utensils next to your stove. Consider painting your knife block to add a fun new pop of color, as well!

Take advantage of the materials you already have--utensils like knives or spatulas, pots, and pans, or wine glasses--as design elements. Rather than hiding them in a cabinet, consider making them a focal point of your kitchen by installing wall or ceiling hangers to put them on full display so that they’re both functional and fashionable.

What are some of your favorite kitchen upgrades on a budget? Let us know in the comments!

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