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WHAT IS YOUR PROJECT?
In high-income neighborhoods, many real estate agents rank outdoor kitchens as homebuyers' most-wanted outdoor feature.
An outdoor kitchen adds value and a large return on investment. Plus it’s great for entertaining guests and dining outdoors all year round!
Think about autumn dinners, winter bonfires, spring parties, and summer BBQs! It’s the perfect place to host any type of gathering and promote outdoor living.
But you’re probably curious about the cost.
The cost of your outdoor kitchen depends on many factors, including the kitchen’s size, materials, appliances, and location in proximity to your house.
We’ll cover each of these factors in more detail.
Outdoor Kitchen Cost Considerations
1. Area prep: You must have a flat and clean surface to begin your outdoor kitchen installation. If your yard is sloped or filled with debris you’ll need to flatten and clear the area. If there are trees in the way, or stumps, you’ll have to remove these as well. Any prep work done to the yard will add to the cost of time and labor, so be sure to plan and budget accordingly.
2. Designer: Many people creating an outdoor kitchen also choose to hire a designer (we’d say interior designer, but an outdoor kitchen is not exactly interior!) to pick out all the furniture and create an aesthetic. If you’ll need help finding furniture and final touches, make sure to factor this into your cost.
3. Appliance quality: An outdoor kitchen is the last place you want to skimp on quality for appliances. Do not assume that these appliances will be the same cost as normal kitchen appliances are because they’ll need to be a lot more durable. Be sure that the appliances and materials you choose to buy are built and certified to withstand outdoor use or they will not be able to withstand temperature and weather fluctuations.
Outdoor Kitchen Size & Scope of Project
Are you looking for a casual space for outdoor dining or an elaborate space to host parties?
The size of your outdoor kitchen will greatly impact its overall costs.
Just be sure that you’re getting value for your money–you don’t want to overspend if you won’t be getting a good return on it.
Budget-Friendly Outdoor Kitchen
- Average cost: $4-10k
- Average size: 100 sq. ft.
- The grill is the focal point - you can offset the costs of the grill with affordable countertop and cabinet materials.
- Most of your budget will be spent on labor, but you can opt for pre-made, in-stock cabinets, islands, and other materials.
- Also, remember that fire pits and string lights are two relatively inexpensive upgrades sure to attract future buyers.
- Other features in this price range may include tile floors, tile countertops, aluminum cabinets, and an awning.
Mid-Range Outdoor Kitchen
Average cost: $10-30k
Average size: 300 sq. ft.
This size/project scope typically includes:
- Built-in gas or propane grill
- Enough countertop space to house a sink and/or bar. If adding a sink, you’ll need to factor in the cost of plumbing.
- Brick floors
- Stainless steel cabinets
- Soapstone counters
- A pergola
High-End Outdoor Kitchen
Average cost: $50k+
Average size: 500 sq. ft.
This size/project scope typically includes:
Specialty appliances like wine coolers, warming drawers, refrigerator, dishwasher, pizza oven, deep fryer, outdoor tv with surround sound, keg dispensers.
- Note: outdoor refrigeration appliances have ongoing costs to keep them cold and functioning properly. If you don’t want to pay these costs, consider installing a beverage center filled with ice.
A separate bar and seating area
Natural stone flooring and framework
The Cost of Outdoor Kitchen Materials
The following estimates are designed to help you calculate the cost of materials for your outdoor kitchen remodeling project:
- Flooring - $40-100 per square foot
- Appliances - $1500-7000
- Framing and cabinets - $200-600 per square foot
- Cover - $25-100 per square foot
Considerations when choosing materials:
- Product warranties
- Weatherproof, susceptibility to cracks in cold weather
- The larger your kitchen, the more materials you’ll need
- Concrete and stainless steel can withstand the elements while also resisting heat and scratches, making them a practical and long-lasting choice
- Porcelain tiles are a good choice for walls and flooring, but they may not be suitable in colder climates, rain, and frost
- If you choose a luxurious material like marble, you’ll have to seal it regularly and accept the fact that outdoor elements may contribute to signs of wear over time
The Cost of Outdoor Kitchen Appliances
The following estimates are designed to help you calculate the cost of appliances for your outdoor kitchen remodeling project:
- Grill - $200-4000
- Stainless steel sink - $100
- Refrigerator - $400-1000
Money-saving tips when choosing appliances:
- Don’t spend your whole budget on the grill if it will look out of place with the other appliances and materials. Communicate with your designer or contractor about what specific features you need.
- You may be able to forgo the sink, fridge and side burner if you locate the outdoor kitchen near your indoor one. An extra bonus is if you can use your kitchen window as a pass-through.
- If you plan to remodel just to sell, keep it simple. Not many real estate agents suggest installing outdoor kitchen appliances before listing your home, but it does add an attractive entertaining element.
Location: The Cost of Perimeter vs. Satellite Kitchens
Ultimately, where you decide to place your outdoor kitchen affects the cost of the kitchen. Determining a location is helpful in early decision-making, designing, and planning. Keep in mind that the cost can also increase when additional outdoor running utilities are needed.
Try locating the outdoor kitchen near where water and electricity are already available:
- An outdoor sink requires a hot water hookup and drain to the sewer system
- A refrigerator requires electrical lines
- A grill may require natural gas piping
When speaking in terms of location, we’ll compare and contrast perimeter kitchens and satellite kitchens.
Perimeter Kitchen Costs
A perimeter kitchen is located right outside the house, possibly sharing a wall or patio cover. This set-up typically includes a grill and maybe a refrigerator, but no sink (since it is right next to the house).
If you build it against your home’s exterior wall you can save on utilities and appliance costs. It saves you approximately $300-1500 in installation costs, can connect to your home’s existing plumbing.
Some real estate agents say that the nearer the outdoor kitchen is to the house, the more value it will add to the property - but this could be different depending on your project.
Satellite Kitchen Costs
A satellite kitchen is separate from the house, so it must be more self-sufficient. This type of kitchen should basically function in the same capacity as indoor kitchens. You’ll need to pay for separate utilities with a sewer hook up or daylight drain, depending on the local codes.
You’ll also need to bury electrical cables and gas lines, perhaps in different trenches. Depending on the project, you could pay as much as 35 per linear foot to run new gas lines.
Overview of Estimates
Varies based on the elements in the kitchen, overhead structures, and paving. Depends on whether you are choosing a custom-built structure or modular prefabricated frames that are finished on-site?
General construction: $5-12k
Cost and installation of appliances: $2-5k
Cost of outdoor kitchen with brick or masonry: $400-600 per linear foot
Cost of outdoor kitchen with pre-fabricated framework: $300-500 per linear foot
- About $200 per linear foot for the raw frame itself
Costs vary by region and contractor, but may average:
- Stucco $5
- Manufactured stone $20
- Brick veneer $15-25
- Standard brick $25-35
- Natural stone $25-45
- Bluestone countertop $35-40
- Granite countertop $60-70