It should go without saying that a kit 18-55mm that sells retail for around $100 is NOT the equal, in any way, of a top-of-the-line lens of similar focal length... BUT... and this is a big BUT... I suggest that almost all casual, amateur newbie shutterbugs (a) wouldn't have a clue how to put the better lens to better use, and (b) couldn't tell the difference in his/her photos taken with the two lenses. I won't go into the reasons - just trust me - it's experience talking!
However, as you become a more knowledgeable and hopefully better photographer you will begin to run into the many limitations of the "kit" lenses which, most often, become more noticeable the more the photographic conditions vary from your average full sun-over-your-shoulder snapshot. Low light - into the light - high speed subjects - macro subjects - subtle available light portrait treatments, and so on.
I have perhaps 10 lenses - most I shouldn't have bought because the kit lenses I have do just as good a job. But it's fun to play around and learn - that's what a "hobby" is all about for me. I have one "special" 2.8/85mm fully manual lens that's perhaps 30 years old and boy, when I take my time with exposure, focus and composition, using a tripod, etc., I DEFY anyone, with any lens, to get more thrilling results. I paid well over $400 USED, 20 years ago and I wouldn't sell it today for $1,000. But it too has many limitations - for example, it has such a fine focus that it's almost impossible to grab a quick shot of a moving child or pet with it. My $100 "kit" lens is a far better tool to use for those conditions. And on it goes.
So before you blow big bucks on a fine lens or two, grow to be a good enough photographer to understand WHY you need it and HOW to use it. Otherwise you're just another snob collector who hasn't yet learned that, as with many other "tools," it's knowing WHEN TO USE IT and WHAT TO DO WITH IT that counts. Believe me, a high-priced lens on your DLSR isn't going take better photos by itself, or make you a better photographer. Only time, practise, education and some TALENT can do that.