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What are the Hidden Costs of a Kitchen Renovation?

The kitchen is somewhere that is becoming increasingly central to home life, often transcending its original functionality of being simply a place to cook. The kitchen can be the setting to some of the most treasured memories in life, Christmas dinners with family members sardined in around the table, baking cakes with the kids, and entertaining friends with a glass of wine around the island.

But what about when your kitchen is in need of a spruce up? The kitchen is often the backdrop to the workings of family life, but you don’t want a renovation to cost you the earth! With the average Australian kitchen renovation coming in at $19,300 in 2018, you want to make sure there aren’t any surprises when presented with the final bill.
That’s why iBuildNew has uncovered the hidden costs of a kitchen renovation to help you draw up a more comprehensive budget.


The Toscana 47 by Masterpiece Homes

Design Costs
It’s worth thinking about what you use your kitchen for. Do you need the space to entertain friends, or are you looking for anything to aid the hectic process of feeding the kids on early mornings and between sports practises and music lessons?
After you’ve made the decision to renovate your kitchen, designing and drawing up plans can incur some unexpectedly high costs. A kitchen designer can take up a large amount of your budget. Home Advisor has provided the following estimates to help you allocate your kitchen renovation budget more wisely:

$10,000–$20,000 project cost: fees of $1,500–$3,000 on average
$30,000 project cost: 10%, or $3,000 fee
$76,000 project cost: 10%, or $7,600 fee
$127,000 project cost: 8%, or $10,160 fee

Restructuring Costs
Restructuring can be an integral part of a kitchen renovation, especially if you’re upgrading to a whole new look.
One way to go over budget is to account for the cost of new flooring, but not for the eye-watering amount it can cost when taking into account gaps left by changes in the cabinetry and layout to the kitchen. It’s also wise to factor in that you may need to refloor a large area if your new plan incorporates an open-plan design between rooms. A clash in flooring could undermine the whole new aesthetic!

You can often save on your kitchen renovation by redesigning the kitchen without relocating the plumbing outlets. But what if your new design is centred around modernising an outdated and impractical kitchen layout? Are you looking to add a faucet to the island you plan to install, for example?
You might need to create a new outlet for waste-water when integrating a new dishwasher or washing machine. Additional plumbing costs can also be incurred when there is no access to the plumbing under the floor as modifications and repairs will need to be undertaken and accounted for in granting access to plumbing works.

Updates to the cabinetry
Updating your cabinetry is one of the easiest and most effective ways of sprucing up your kitchen on a budget. Unexpected costs can manifest in the installation of cabinetry when factoring in structural changes that may be necessary.
Benchtops and cabinets are designed to fit square walls at 90-degree angles. Whilst it’s rare to consider rebuilding in the whole wall, an additional cost may be incurred in modifying cabinetry to fit your kitchen.

Thinking of starting a renovation project? Our team at iBuildNew can help you! Contact us on 1300 943 640  or for free assistance in finding a builder.

iBuildnew Advisory Team
Let us do the legwork for you.
  • We’ll ask the right questions to better understand your needs
  • We’ll create a recommended shortlist ideally matched to you
  • We’ll answer specific questions or concerns related to home building, land purchasing or financing

Emily Felton

Following a degree in Marketing, Emily cut her teeth in the world of journalism, writing features for various national publications. Her particular areas of interest are sustainable housing, renovation and good old interior design.


iBuildNew is the market leading aggregator dedicated to residential home construction and land development. As an independent platform, iBuildNew helps Australians identify and compare new home designs, house and land packages and land estates. It’s the smart way home buyers, who are considering a new build, can find the ideal options to match their individual needs. Home building is a big decision, we make sure you get it right.

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