It is a well-known fact that the kitchen and the bathroom are the most expensive rooms in the house, so a bit of research and planning ahead of your renovation will help to keep costs and stresses down, and have the project go as smoothly as possible.
Budget. As with any project to be undertaken, the first thing you need to do is fix your budget, and please, please, please remember to allow for overruns – you do not known what will be found in the walls or the floor that will result in additional costs to the project.
Layout. Does the existing layout work for you? Are you taking out any walls to make a bigger space, or adding windows or doors? These kinds of changes need to be taken into account when considering the layout of the kitchen. Remember the triangle between sink, stove and fridge!
Electrical Outlets. A very common problem in a kitchen is an insufficient number of electrical outlets, particularly at countertop level. If your large appliances are all to be built-in, each will need a dedicated outlet. How much countertop space will you have? Do you have small appliances that live on the counter like a coffee machine, toaster or toaster oven? Do you have other appliances that live in a cupboard and are used only occasionally? Additional outlets should be provided to accommodate these appliances.
Countertop. There are numerous choices for the countertop, from tiles to granite or polished stone, to concrete, stainless steel and various molded surfaces. And the price range is equally huge, with unique custom-made surfaces costing thousands of dollars. Be careful that you don’t overspend on the finishes as you might not get it back on reselling your property. Also think about wear and tear on the counter – do you have kids? Might there be frequent spillages that might cause staining?
Cabinets. The choice of finishes for your cabinets is limitless, from natural wood to laminates, stainless steel, glass, synthetic finishes and various combinations of them all. Do you wish your upper level cabinets to go right up to the ceiling – the advantages of this include more storage space though high up, no dust can collect on the top of the cupboards, plus it gives the illusion of a higher ceiling, which is particularly good if your ceiling is a little low.
Floor. Are you installing a new floor covering? If yes, it needs to be something that is very durable to withstand the wear and tear of traffic in the busiest room in your house! Hardwood, tile, stone or even polished concrete fill this role effectively and efficiently.
Appliances. The kitchen is often described as the “heart of the home”, so you don’t want to skimp on appliances. Stainless steel is more expensive but it will last longer. Having appliances that match is also very important to the overall look of the finished kitchen. Do you want a dishwasher and where do you want it to be located? Do you want a built-in microwave or wine cooler, and where should they be located. Now is the time to think about these things.
There you have it. Lots to think about before your project gets started, but planning ahead will more than pay for itself in the successful completion of the project.