Before you dive in to start a kitchen remodel and begin ripping out cabinets, tearing down walls or prying up old flooring in your kitchen, you need to take time to sit down and plan everything from start to finish to ensure your remodel goes well. When it comes to a smooth renovation be sure to follow these simple 10 tips for remodeling a kitchen and avoid the downfalls that others have experienced.
1. Set a Budget and Stick to It
Take time to price the items you want to have in the new kitchen before you rush out and buy something that will cost five times more than an identical product may cost at another store. You should take time to think about the current housing market and what homes in your own neighborhood are valued so you won’t end up with expensive counter tops and flooring that just won’t fit in with the atmosphere of the neighborhood. For example, if you live in a family-friendly area, focus the remodel on a family sitting down for a meal. If you only have a budget of $10,000 or less, try to rehab the current cabinets and slap on a good coat of fresh paint on cabinets and walls to help update things. Stick to your budget so you don’t find yourself in over your head.
2. Know Current Trends
If you are remodeling a kitchen so you can sale a home, try to keep it updated with the current popular trends to help entice a buyer. You don’t have to go overboard financially to make a few quick changes to update to an eco-friendly dishwasher or an energy saving stove or refrigerator. Many of the current trends for kitchens also call for materials that are easy to clean when in a hurry, so keep that in mind when you are choosing materials for counters, floors and walls as well as appliances.
3. New Fixtures and Hardware
When you remodel the kitchen, it is a good idea to swap out the old sink faucets and lighting fixtures for a modern look, or for a vintage look if that is what you are going for. To help ensure many years of use, be sure to purchase quality fixtures instead of trying to save money and end up with faucets that will break or lighting fixtures that just don’t look as great as you want them to look.
4. Plan to Get a Dumpster
If you will be ripping out the old cabinets, replacing flooring with hardwood or new tile or swapping out the old counter tops for marble or another material, you are going to need a dumpster. It’s easy to rent a dumpster in the size you need for the remodel and you can fill it up with the old cabinets, flooring and even appliances. When the kitchen remodel is finished, the dumpster will be picked up and taken to the nearest landfill where the enclosed items can be sorted for recycling or disposal. It’s much easier to have a dumpster than to try to haul everything away on your own or to have the city pick up your remodeling waste.
No matter how big or small your kitchen remodel is, you need to keep the plumbing where it is and use it for the new sink, dishwasher and other appliances you might plan to move in. It’s not convenient to relocate water lines or drain lines, and you may find that doing so will add a hefty cost onto the remodel. (source: AnyTimePlumbing.net) When planning the remodel, you should consult with a licensed plumber to plan in detail every change you need to make with the kitchen plumbing.
6. Watch the Architecture
If you have an older home and want to have a modern kitchen, it can take more than a few snazzy stainless appliances to achieve the look you want. Depending on the year your home was built, and whether it’s been updated previously, you might find yourself spending quite a bit of money for updates to the electrical or even the walls or flooring. Older homes often have wiring that runs to the old glass fuse boxes, and if you want to update with new outlets, lighting or modern appliances, you need to call an electrician to have a breaker box installed and possibly new wiring throughout the home.
7. Remnants Work Wonders
Do you want nice marble or granite counter tops, but those materials are a little out of your spending range? If so, check with the supply stores to see if they have a remnant section (most do) and see what they have. If you go at just the right time, you may just find a great deal on the perfect counter top and you will be able to have that beautiful look for a fraction of what you would pay for a new piece.
8. Used or Scratch and Dent Shops
There is no written rule anywhere that says a person must spend a fortune on brand new appliances during a kitchen remodel. You can find almost new or even new with a few cosmetic flaws for a much lower price than a new appliance sold at retail value. Scratch and dent shops and used appliance stores can save you up to thousands of dollars and you can often find perfect appliances to have the look you want.
9. Lighting is A Major Importance
Lighting is going to be one of the top things to think about during a kitchen remodel. Take time to plan for under cabinet lighting or lighting that is flush with the ceiling for a modern look and better lighting throughout the kitchen. Brighter lighting is good for work areas such as over an island or over counters while softer light is ideal near the dinner table or in a bar area.
10. Keep It Safe
While it is naturally important to keep the renovation area safe for those who live in your home, it is equally important to make sure that the kitchen remodel itself produces a finished product that will be safe for those in your home as well as those who visit. Place your stovetop in a spot where children won’t be able to easily access it to topple hot pans over. Make sure the floor space is adequate for walking through the room and that the materials used for flooring won’t become slippery if someone drops an ice cube or spills a drink. Child locks are a great idea but taking time to make sure the kitchen not only looks great but is also a safe area for all is one of the most important things to consider when planning your kitchen remodel.
Once you know what you want, you can start calling remodel contractors for estimates and to get started. Keep in mind that you need to stick to your budget, keep safety in mind and make sure the floor plan is easy to navigate when you want a drink of water in the middle of the night.