A husband and wife DIY duo have explained how they completely renovated their kitchen for just over £1,200 instead of splashing out £13,000.
Mark Kelly and Kelly Kelly, from Tyldesley in Greater Manchester, say they are “obsessed with saving money” and scour the internet for the second-hand bargains on sites like Facebook Marketplace, eBay and Gumtree .
They’ve also taught themselves how to do certain DIY tasks, like tiling and joinery, so they don’t have to pay someone else to do it.
Mr and Mrs Kelly – who have appeared on TV shows like Don’t Tell the Bride and Coach Trip – created their new kitchen based on one they’d seen at a well-known store.
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They say the kitchen units alone would have cost between £8,000 and £9,000 but they managed to snag similar versions for just £500 on Gumtree.
They were stunned when the ex-display units arrived with all the appliances as well, and despite being in a “right state” managed to clean them up so they look good as new.
The couple also found grey tiles for sale on a local Facebook group for half the price they would’ve paid at Wickes – getting four boxes for £20.
Mr Kelly even created their island unit himself after bartering down a local seller for two lengths of solid oak from £150 to £100.
He also managed to get the laminate for the island free on Gumtree and use timber from a stud wall they had previously removed from another room.
They estimate the total cost of the finished kitchen, including time they spent doing it, would’ve been £1,200.
This saves them around £11,800 on the rough £13,000 guide price they say it would’ve cost them if they paid for everything full price and called in professionals.
Mr Kelly told Manchester Evening News : “We are obsessed with saving money – my wife will tell you I’m tighter than cramp honestly.
“We found the kitchen units for just £500 on Gumtree, and when it turned up it included all the appliances as well, we couldn’t believe it.
“It was in a right state because it was ex-display, but we cleaned it up and you would never know it wasn’t new when we’d finished.”
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Mr and Mrs Kelly are professional entertainers who do magic and music shows at live venues and holiday parks.
But when the lockdown came into force last year, and their business had to stop, they decided to sharpen up their DIY skills and launched Rooms Reloved, where they share inspiration on how to find bargains and do up homes on a budget.
The couple, who have three children, Leah, 15, Beth, 11, and Logan, 4, aim to buy everything they need in renovations for half-price or less.
As well as renovating rooms in their own home, they’ve also saved other families in the North East of England hundreds of pounds redecorating bedrooms and bathrooms.
Talking to the Mirror, the couple claim they’re now in talks with a production company to turn their makeover on a budget ideas into a TV programme.
Mr Kelly said: “When lockdown happened, everything just stopped for us as professional entertainers and presenters. We had to look at what else we can do and draw on the skills we have got.
“I’ve taught myself DIY skills over the years by shadowing local builders here and there and YouTube videos.
“Kelly watches every design and makeover show on TV and lives online looking for new ideas before I start the work so we both pick as much up as possible really.”
How much did the couple spend – and what did they save?
Units with appliances – £500 (should have been £9,000)
Fridge/freezer – £300 (should have been £500)
Island – £100 (should have been £150)
Grey laminate for island – Free (should have been £120)
Wall tiles – £20 (should have been £40)
Floor tiles – £260 (paid full-price)
Total paid – £1,180 – labour free
Original cost – £10,070 – not including paying for labour, which the couple estimate would have taken the total figure to around £13,000