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how to renovate the kitchen in your multifamily unit

How to Renovate the Kitchen in Your Multifamily Unit

Modern on a Budget- Renovating the Kitchen of Your Multifamily Unit

Are you looking to upgrade your multifamily units, but don’t know where to start? Do you want to renovate without breaking the bank? Remember, renovations may take time, money and effort, but there are minor ways to upgrade your units without breaking the bank.

When looking for a new apartment, most renters opt for a clean and modern place to call home. For landlords and other multifamily property owners, it is important to understand the needs and desires of your potential tenants. According to Apartment Therapy, for Homeowners and renters, “76% of them plan to renovate or remodel their homes. Of those, bathrooms (48%) and kitchens (48%) are the top priorities.”  Renters, just like homeowners, desire a sleek and contemporary design style to their kitchen.

To take full advantage of this information, it is in the best interest of property managers to renovate their units to appeal to the desires of potential tenants. Renovations may seem like a tedious and expensive project, but the reward can be great. There are many helpful tips and tricks to save money on your renovation projects without cutting corners on design and aesthetic appeal. Making these small renovations can yield a great return on investment.


Here are some ways to make your multifamily units modern on a budget.


If it’s not broken, don’t fix it

For any renovation, analyze what needs to be improved. When renovating multiple units, you only need to focus on updating a few key features in the kitchen. Remember, you don’t have to fix everything. Once you have narrowed down the key features to improve, such as cabinets, countertops and flooring, find cheaper alternatives that still provide the same look and feel as desired. Avoid moving plumbing and electrical by keeping the sink and stove in generally the same place, since this can help you cut substantial costs. New stainless-steel appliances may be beautiful and shiny, but if the current refrigerator and stove are in good condition, there is no need to replace them. Replacing every appliance in every unit can become very expensive. Making minor adjustments to what’s already there can be a great way to give an old kitchen a well-needed facelift.



A beautiful and cost-effective way to save money on countertops is to use cheaper materials such as butcher block or shiplap. Butcher block is a wood-like affordable countertop alternative that looks good in almost any style of kitchen. This countertop can update a kitchen very easily, adding warmth and a cozy feel to any contemporary style. Butcher block can make replacing old countertops in your units very inexpensive, but still stylish.



blue backsplash in kitchen

Image from


When the kitchen is looking a bit boring, adding a pop of color or texture to your backsplash can be just the right touch to any modernized kitchen. You may be thinking this is unnecessary, but these affordable backsplash options can add some spunk to your kitchen. You can easily update your backsplash with adhesive tile panels that peel and stick to your wall without the need for grout. Adding tile panels to your backsplash will make your kitchen look more inviting and polished, which is sure to grab the hearts of any potential renters. If the tile panels are still a little out of your price range, wallpaper may be your best option. Wallpaper can add some color and a unique contrast to plain cabinets, while remaining fairly affordable.



Cabinetry is a must have for any renter, everyone wants ample storage and shelving space for their items. If your plain, old builder-grade cabinets need an upgrade, start by painting or staining your cabinets to give them an entirely new makeover. You may want to have professional painters do this task for a clean and polished finish. Adding new hardware to the cabinets can give an entirely new look to your kitchen. With “new” cabinets, you are well on your way to having the kitchen of your renters’ dreams.


If your units do not have enough kitchen storage, open shelving is a great way to add some. Shelves (slabs of wood or butcher block) and brackets are all you need to make some gorgeous additional storage. To spice it up, try painting the open shelving the same color as your newly finished cabinets, but leaving the shelving as is, will also create a stunning juxtaposition. This affordable space adding tip will make your units instantly more attractive to potential tenants.


kitchen floor in white kitchen

Image from Pinterest user Brent Rucker

Floor, floor, floor

Laying new flooring is a great way to add some “wow” factor to your multifamily unit. Though traditional hardwood flooring is preferred, it can be rather expensive. But, you’re in luck, there are plenty of affordable alternatives to choose from; Laminate and bamboo are great substitutes for high priced hardwood floors. Laminate floors are super durable and budget-friendly, ranging in a variety of colors and styles. Laminate flooring is a great way to achieve a beautiful finish to your newly renovated kitchens. These floors can be easily installed on top of existing flooring, making them more cost effective and low on labor costs. Alternative flooring can give you the same appearance of hardwood flooring at a cheaper price. Don’t be afraid to explore all your options, as it’s important to find the best fit for your kitchen design and your budget.


Seems like you are well on your way to having the most desirable multifamily units on the block. You have painted your cabinets, overlaid new flooring, added additional shelving and gorgeous butcher block countertops, all at an affordable cost to you. Renovating is not a daunting task when you have these easy and inexpensive tips. Renovating doesn’t have to be difficult, you can enhance the design and appeal of your “new” multifamily kitchens with ease.


These are just some changes you can make to make your multifamily property stand up. Hurry up and make those changes, we see renters coming!