Every home improvement project comes with its fair share of challenges, but kitchen remodels can be especially expensive and tedious because you need to think about more than just how the area will appear and feel; you also need to decide which appliances to get, what to do about the plumbing, and how to organise the storage. Not to mention that you still need to eat meals with your family, and takeaway quickly becomes boring.
However, don’t let the extra labour involved in remodelling your kitchen persuade you to continue using an old room or one that doesn’t function well for you. We’ve compiled 7 smart suggestions that will make the journey to your ideal kitchen painless.
#1 Always plan ahead
The planning phase of your kitchen renovation ought to take longer than the building itself. Planning ahead will help you reduce the length of time you have to put up with construction chaos. Additionally, you’re more likely to stick to your budget.
How long should you devote to planning? At least six months is advised, according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association. By doing this, you can avoid the temptation to make changes in the middle of the project, which would raise the cost of construction and reduce your return on investment.
Some planning tips:
- Examine your current kitchen: How wide is the entrance to it? An extra-large refrigerator is a common mistake made by homeowners, who then discover they can’t fit it through the doorway. Make a drawing of your kitchen with measurements for the doorways, walkways, counters, etc. to prevent errors like these. Also, remember height.
- Ergonomically sound design: A wall oven instead of a range, adjustable counter heights, and drawers or pull-out shelves in base cabinets are all elements that make a kitchen usable and accessible to all people.
- Plan for the unexpected: Even if you’ve planned your remodel down to the precise amount of nails you’ll need, be prepared for the unexpected. Include a small buffer for finishing the renovation.
- Before beginning, decide on all of your fixtures and supplies: Contractors will be able to submit more precise quotes, and there would be less of a chance that back-orders will create delays.
#2 Reconsider appliances you need
Planning a new kitchen presents a lot of opportunities for overindulgence. While a six-burner commercial-grade range and a refrigerator from a luxury brand may add striking visual elements to the space, they might not suit your cooking demands or way of life.
The design and functioning of the complete kitchen should be the focus of the makeover rather than the appliances. Therefore, unless you’re a great cook who cooks frequently, focus your money on long-term elements that increase value, such as cabinetry and flooring.
#3 Maintain Your Footprint
Nothing will increase the expense of a redesign more quickly than moving electrical and plumbing outlets and demolishing walls. This is typically where unanticipated issues arise.
Therefore, if at all feasible, leave walls, plumbing, and appliances in the same spot. By reducing the quantity of dust and debris your project produces, you’ll also save money on demolition and rebuilding charges.
#4 Never Underrate the Power of Lighting
In a kitchen, the right lighting can make all the difference. It can appear bigger and brighter as a result. Additionally, it will support safe and effective work. In your kitchen, you should have two different forms of lighting:
- Task lighting: Since cabinets provide such dark work spaces, under-cabinet lighting should be on your must-have list. There won’t be a better time to hardwire your lights than while you’re redecorating. To prevent shadows, designate at least two fixtures for each task space. For islands and other worktops without low cabinets, pendant lights work well. Over sinks and other prep areas without overhead cabinets, recessed lighting, and track lighting both function effectively.
- Ambient lighting: Track lights, wall sconces, and flush-mounted ceiling fixtures all work together to illuminate your kitchen as a whole. To control intensity and mood, add dimmer switches.
#5 Increase Storage Rather Than Space
Storage will always be in need, but if you’re keeping the same footprint, here are some suggestions for increasing it:
- Install cabinets that reach the ceiling: They could be more expensive, and you might require a stepladder, but you’ll gain useful storage space for seasonal items like Christmas plates, etc. Furthermore, you won’t need to dust the tops of the cabinets.
- Hang them up: Install tiny shelf units behind cabinet doors and on vacant wall space. Stock pots and large skillets can be hung from a ceiling-mounted rack. Aprons, brooms, and mops can be hung from hooks attached to the backs of closet doors.
#6 Be Quality-Aware
Choose products with long warranties and low maintenance requirements instead of low-quality deals. For example, solid-surface countertops may be a little more expensive, but with the right maintenance, they’ll last a very long time.
Additionally, devices with long warranties are a selling point if you want to move soon.
#7 Clearly communicate with your remodelers
To remain inside your budget, developing a good working relationship with your project manager or construction crew is crucial. To maintain a good flavour in your project. Make sure to:
- Visit the project when it is active: Your presence communicates your dedication to excellence.
- Create a communication schedule: Place a bulletin board where you and the project manager can post daily updates. Give team leaders and substitutes your cell phone number and email address.
- Establish house rules: Give specific instructions regarding smoking, boombox volume, adequate bathrooms, and proper parking.
- Be kind: Offer them drinks (a little hospitality goes a long way), compliment them when appropriate, and refrain from talking to them, making jokes at their expense, or asking them questions while they are working. They’ll do better if given some rest and space to focus.
And as a final piece of advice, while the building is going on, consider including ideas for a temporary kitchen in your new kitchen’s design. If you can eat dinner while construction is going on, you’ll be happier (and less annoyed).