Budget Breakdown

From kitchen renovations and tiny house builds to sweeping home renovations, this series illustrates how good design can be had for virtually any budget.

Budget Breakdown: A Seattle Family Builds a Rugged Cabin on a Remote Island for $41K
Budget Breakdown: A Seattle Family Builds a Rugged Cabin on a Remote Island for $41K
Working with salvaged and donated materials (and without ferry service), the Stinns assemble a dreamy getaway piece by piece.
By Rachel Gallaher - 13 days ago
Budget Breakdown: How a Couple Built a 480-Square-Foot Home for $68K in Cash
Two cozy living pods, one incredible oak-covered deck—and no bank loan.
Our 10 Favorite Budget Breakdowns This Year, From $26K to $705K
Let's talk money, people. Read on for real budgets from real projects to inspire your next architectural adventure.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Reimagines a Ramshackle Catskills Cabin for $170K
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Reimagines a Ramshackle Catskills Cabin for $170K
After discovering a rough-and-tumble 1959 getaway, Drew Stuart sets about polishing it up with period-appropriate fixtures and finishes.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect DIYs a Luminous Work Shed for $10K
Tim Vander Hoek designs and builds a 60-square-foot office using a mix of lumber and a hallmark wraparound acrylic clerestory.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Builds an Experimental Garden Studio for Less Than £5K
In the British countryside, Stirling Prize nominee Michael Dillon builds a tiny office as an exercise in low-carbon, low-cost construction.
Budget Breakdown: A Designer Polishes Up a Lackluster Guesthouse for $54K
Avalon Rossi uses reclaimed wood, plaster built-ins, and four sets of French doors—a lucky score—to recast an 800-square-foot San Diego home.
Budget Breakdown: A Couple Roll Up Their Sleeves to Revamp a Colorado A-Frame for $164K
Amy Pigliacampo and Corey Szopinski brave snow, fire, and falling trees as they transform a ’70s cabin into a Scandinavian-style retreat.
Budget Breakdown: A DIY Designer Builds a Tiny Guesthouse for $109K
Kelli Hix creates a charming ADU off the back of her historic bungalow in Nashville, Tennessee.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect’s £224K Remodel Makes a Splash With Pastel Tile
Inspired by a David Hockney painting, Grant Straghan colors his London home in soothing tones of seafoam and rose.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Overhauls His Garage Into a Finely Tuned ADU for $75K
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Overhauls His Garage Into a Finely Tuned ADU for $75K
Valery Augustin rolls up his sleeves and converts his two-car structure into a long-term rental in Los Angeles.
Budget Breakdown: Four Minnesota Housemates Turn Their Dingy Garage Into a Workspace for $26K
The friends scoured Facebook Marketplace and local salvage centers—locating such treasures as decades-old Douglas fir flooring from a decommissioned munitions plant—to remake the...
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Tinkers With Passive House Design on Long Island for $705K
Wayne Turett of The Turett Collaborative designs his own energy-efficient holiday home in Greenport, New York, as an exercise in experimentation.
Budget Breakdown: An Architecture Student Turns an Old School Bus Into His Home for $7K
Caleb Brackney transforms a 1995 Thomas International bus into his full-time residence in Knoxville, Tennessee, using recycled and found items to repurpose as furnishings.
Budget Breakdown: A $614K Renovation Carves Up an L.A. Bungalow Like a Slice of Swiss Cheese
Shin Shin Architecture brings playful porosity and a fresh ADU to a 1923 single-family home.
Budget Breakdown: Partway Through a Renovation, the Potential of This Atlanta Home Becomes Clear
Local designer and artist Briana Babani creates a luminous dream home from a once neglected and dreary interior.
Budget Breakdown: A New Zealand Architect Builds a Passive House for His Family for $490K
Drawing on a simple material palette of plywood and corrugated metal, architect Rafe Maclean designs a certified Passive House on a steep, challenging lot in Dunedin.
Budget Breakdown: This $851K Riverside Home Is a Case Study in Smart, Sustainable Living
Combining creative nous with careful planning, architect Mark Lawton builds a net-zero home inspired by the typology of a fisherman’s shack.
Budget Breakdown: A DIY Builder Creates an Off-Grid Cabin in Canada for $22K
Perched on a cliff above the North Saskatchewan River, this 240-square-foot family retreat soaks up jaw-dropping views.
Budget Breakdown: A Seattle Architect Crafts a Hardworking Shed for Just Over $2,200
A humble composition of two-by-fours, plywood, and polycarbonate, the Uphill Utilitarian is a flexible storage space and studio.
Budget Breakdown: An Oregon Retreat Revamped for $135K Channels Nautical Wes Anderson Vibes
In the tiny community of Cape Meares, a DIY couple turn an unassuming shingled house into a maritime-inspired getaway.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Couple Find Work/Life Balance With a Backyard Office Built for $144K
The founders of Austin-based Hunt Architecture create an elegant workspace and guest room without breaking the bank.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Turns Her Parents’ Garage Into a Tiny Home for $2,695
Moving home to Torrance, California, to take care of her dad, Monica Chang makes clever use of 170 square feet.
Budget Breakdown: A Miami Designer Builds a 400-Square-Foot Backyard House for $140.5K
Emma Pereira drew inspiration from Japanese micro homes to build Atelier Lumi, a tiny studio and guesthouse.
Budget Breakdown: A Seattle Architect Gives Her Galley Kitchen a Mod Update for $28K
Aimée O’Carroll of goCstudio uses color blocking to fantastic effect in her 60-square-foot kitchen.
Budget Breakdown: An Architect Revives a 1963 Cabin in the Californian Sierras for $50K
San Francisco–based couple Tom McElroy and Scott Turco breathe new life into a dated retreat in the forests of Arnold.
Budget Breakdown: A Portland Home Packs an Off-Grid Punch for $820K
On challenging terrain overlooking a wetland, Minarik Architecture creates a resilient, dual-volume residence.
Budget Breakdown: A Historian Couple Revamp Their Storybook Victorian for $174K
A modern addition to an old London home offers ample space for a growing family, as well as a floor-to-ceiling bookshelf situated under a skylight.
Budget Breakdown: An Interior Designer Livens Up Her Dated Kitchen for $57K
Leonora Mahle gives her midcentury home a fresh new look with a pool-inspired color palette.
Budget Breakdown: A Shipping Container Is Transformed Into an Off-Grid Tiny Home for $23K
The eco-friendly escape is powered by solar panels and a wind turbine—and it even includes a full bath.