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Budget rental kitchen remodel that is easily reversible

Think you’re stuck with your rental kitchen the way it is and that you can’t do anything to change it? This rental kitchen remodel will change your mind! I had a $500 budget to inject some fun and personality in a generic rental kitchen and to make it more functional to prepare meals.

The star of this kitchen makeover? The peel and stick tile backsplash. I used VINTAGE smart tiles in AZUR – they are full of life and color, and perfectly match the eclectic quirky sense of style of the renters: Shaina, Tessa and Waffles the dog. I was able to install the peel and stick smart tiles right over the existing subway tiles so this project was quick, easy and mess free, with stunning results.

I used the smart tiles as inspiration for the rest of the makeover, including the rustic window cornice/valance I made with some scrap wood, and the IKEA kitchen cart revamping that I did: I gave it new wheels, a new top and made it even more functional by incorporating a space rack. It’s now the hub of the kitchen and with the beautiful blue stain I chose for the top, it looks right at home with the peel and stick tiles.

The entire kitchen remodel, including the plants came in under budget at $446 and by doing it as soon as they moved into the house, Shaina, Tessa and Waffles the dog will get to enjoy their new kitchen for the next 3 years while they live in the house and work on their tiny house business, the LATCH collective, making the investment well worth it.

Want to find out more about the LATCH collective and what’s happening around tiny houses in LA? Here’s the link to what Shaina, Tessa and Waffles are up: http://bit.ly/2rdvY24

Here’s a cost breakdown for the makeover:

Total cost: $446

Backsplash: $368
VINTAGE Azur Smart Tiles – 46 tiles @ $8 each – product info: http://amzn.to/2scL8F4

Window Cornice: $10
$6 wood and corner brackets
$4 paint (custom color)

IKEA BEKVAM kitchen cart hack/revamp: $48
2 ½” casters w/ brakes: $14
Wood: $15
Stain: $8

Plants: $20

For more rental kitchen decorating ideas, you can watch how I gave a makeover to my LA apartment kitchen in this video: http://bit.ly/1G7OtAH

Tutorial on how I revamped the IKEA kitchen cart: http://bit.ly/2s5ZplS

Want to see what I’m working on next? Follow me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/eyspace/

Watch how I’ve transformed all the rooms in my LA apartment here:

Want to see what I did to my NYC studio apartment? Watch season 1 of the show: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL6G39TvbIKJgSEfB7vdR0RFmvkw3xF90O

Subscribe to my channel so you don’t miss any of my videos: http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=EngineerYourSpace

Want more DIY tips and inspiration, find out about product giveaways and other news? Visit my website and sign up for my newsletter: http://www.engineeryourspace.com/

Thanks to Smart Tiles for sponsoring this makeover!

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  1. Crystal Cyrus Sartin

    I liked it before in its original state.

  2. Been in this apartment only three months and still trying to "figure it out". I'm getting ideas. Thanks! The tiles are a great addition. I think I could do that!

  3. wow super

  4. These comments are so unnecessary. Nobody cares if you preferred the bland tiles. They wanted color, and that's not the point.


  6. Hi! I’m wondering if the smart tiles cause any damage at all to the original backsplash! I’m moving into a new place (rental) and it has existing glass backsplash that I don’t like but I’m super nervous that the smart tiles could somehow mess it up.

  7. How tacky, covering beautiful subway tiles with a cheap looking paper imitation

  8. Wow..i am a great fan of yours..what r those sticker tiles called.can I get in in India?

  9. People please remember THIS is for someone ELSE and in no way involves YOU!!! Lol don't like it don't cover it the end! I can't believe how many people are childishly Fr€akinG out like its YOURS and FOREVER!!!

  10. So nice i wanna alot have my own house , to be free to live my life without a man , but in musulman country is just impossible.

  11. Can you do this on a painted wall

  12. Wow. It changed the look of your kitchen. Nice

  13. semilladearandano

    another creative and delightful project. Keep up the awesome work!

  14. No no no and noppp

  15. The white tile are wayyy better

  16. Wow!!! Fantastic!

  17. NothingToNoOneInParticular

    Most over used word in english? Eclectic.

  18. EngineerYourSpace, or anyone, lol: Is there a reversible update I could do to my wooden kitchen cabinets?

  19. The look was attractive, but the price was awful. For those that are counting there pennies, rental reverse needs to be considerably less. How about a budget friendly makeover!

  20. LAB-Lil' Angry B!tch

    This Kitchen looks nice however #1 Design rule: DON'T use Blue in a Kitchen or Dinning room. Blue is the least appetizing color in our visual spectrum, & it not a good color to use where food is being eatten or prepared. Case in point: Most Restaurants don't use the color blue. The only reasons to use blue in a dinning area or kitchen: if you are trying to lose weight or are planning to not use those spaces very much. Any professional designer knows this.