Sarah Beeny shares a surprising tip on where to save during a home renovation – as well as where to splurge

The renowned property expert never ceases to amaze us!

Sarah Beeny
(Image credit: Getty Images/Kate Green/Stringer)

Sarah Beeny is undoubtedly a seasoned property expert, becoming known for presenting TV shows such as Property Ladder and her own recent docuseries, Sarah Beeny’s New Life in the Country among many others. And that's not to mention the invaluable experience of renovating several of her own homes. So when she gives advice about where to save and where to splurge when renovating a home, we make sure to listen.

It's always a delight when experts manage to surprise us with their advice, as Sarah did with her budget kitchen idea in a recent interview with Ideal Home that just might save you from some kitchen renovation regrets and help save some cash for areas where it's more greatly needed.

Sarah’s tip neatly aligns with Kevin McCloud’s IKEA kitchen philosophy, in that you don’t have to spend a lot of money on the base of your cooking space. ‘You can always get away without a proper kitchen,’ explains Sarah. ‘You can just use bits of furniture that you can get so cheap!'

A kitchen made of vintage furniture

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Sarah Beeny’s home renovation tips

‘You can buy second-hand furniture for practically nothing and then paint it all the same colour,' says Sarah. 'That way you could get a makeshift kitchen for probably £200. And it won't do forever but it'll do for a while.'

A kitchen with a vintage open bookshelf used to display tableware

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tom Meadows)

As for what to do with the savings? Invest in the key baseline of the home that you might regret cutting corners on. ‘Make sure that your wiring and your plumbing is done right,' she advises. 'Make sure you don’t have damp on the walls, have the plastering right, electrics right, get all of those base things right. And then worry about doing more expensive things later on.'

Those expensive things include the costs of getting new kitchen cabinets or curtains. The latter is one which Sarah has yet to pick and hang hers in her home.

‘The kitchen isn’t quite finished. We haven’t got curtains in there and I haven’t got round to that. And there’s quite a lot of rooms that haven’t got curtains in!'

So even for Sarah Beeny, there’s always a little (or large) home project waiting around the corner that needs to get done.

News Writer

Sara Hesikova has been Ideal Home’s News Writer since July 2023, bringing the Ideal Home’s readership breaking news stories from the world of home decor and interiors, as well as trend-led pieces, shopping round-ups and more. Graduating from London College of Fashion with a bachelor’s degree in fashion journalism in 2016, she got her start in niche fashion and lifestyle magazines like Glass and Alvar as a writer and editor before making the leap into interiors, working with the likes of 91 Magazine and copywriting for luxury bed linen brand Yves Delorme among others. She feels that fashion and interiors are intrinsically connected – if someone puts an effort into what they wear, they most likely also care about what they surround themselves with.