We’ve all been tempted to take a sledgehammer to something in our homes, perhaps after binge-watching a Remodeling show just out of sheer frustration with a less than perfect work space. Before you break out the sledgehammer, ask yourself a few important questions
1: Will you stay or will you go?
Unless you are looking to put your house on the market in the next 12-36 months, any remodeling project in the kitchen should be a reflection of your personal style and needs.
DON’T spend money on a remodel for a supposed resale that isn’t happening any time soon.
DO spend money making your kitchen both functional and beautiful for your enjoyment.
If you are listing, be advised that most buyers are more concerned with the condition of the roof than the types of counters you have.
2: Are you respecting the home’s architectural style?
Make sure your new kitchen flows with the rest of your home.
This is important for resale as well.
If your house is a Center Hall Colonial, you probably should steer clear of a modern aesthetic in your kitchen. Classic shapes like a Shaker door style can lean modern while still keeping a classic style that won’t fight with a more traditional home.
DON’T create a kitchen space that doesn’t compliment your Home’s Architecture and furnishings.
DO work with a designer to make your kitchen current, functional and work with your home’s style.
3: Are you skimping on cabinetry?
Putting in cheap cabinetry is not the way to go. Cabinetry is the biggest investment in your kitchen. Choose a quality product with warranty and you will get a lifetime out of your cabinetry.
DON’T sacrifice quality to cut your budget. Look for ways to save that you can upgrade or add later. Go with a laminate countertop if your budget is maxed out. You can always change a countertop or add a backsplash. You won’t replace the cabinetry with your expensive quartz tops installed on top.DO Shop for quality even if it means temporarily sacrificing some kitchen amenities in the short term. A good designer will steer you in the right direction and let you know what’s best to do now and what can be installed later.
4: Do you really need those high-end appliances?
It is advisable to invest in quality appliances however, you should assess your needs before you leap into that really beautiful Viking Package of appliances and its price tag.
DO consider how much you will use your appliances and how much wear and tear they will endure. Think about your lifestyle and choose appliances that will give you the most features and fit for your budget… be honest with yourself.
DON’T burn your budget on appliances. Your kitchen should be a well-rounded space.
Your high-end appliances may look silly next bargain basement cabinetry.
5: Do you trust your contractor?
Hiring a contractor can be a struggle for many customers. Ask questions, trust your instincts and steer clear of anyone who won’t provide references.
DO your research before hiring a contractor. It can easily turn into a disaster if you don’t.
DON’T hire someone if you get a bad vibe from them. You’re letting this person into your home, trust and comfort should be #1. If you have a bad feeling about someone, you’re probably right.
Trend Discussed: Mismatch or Staggered Edge Tile Trend.
6: Is your kitchen too trendy?
We’ve all seen magazines with trends in kitchens like open shelving, industrial elements, bright splashes of color and many more. Be realistic when selecting trendy items for your kitchen. Is this a trend you will love long term? Are you organized enough to have open shelving stacked with bowls or will it end up a dusty clutter of mismatched dishes?
DO have fun with your space. Add trendy elements you will love long term or in small doses. Focus on some trendy accents rather than a trendy room.
DON’T be afraid to embrace a trend that you love. Plan carefully and you can have the perfect balance of trend and longevity. If you’re trying to appeal to the resale market stick to classics over trend as they’ll have a broader appear to potential buyers.
7: Is your kitchen functional?
A place for everything and everything in its place. Take an inventory of what you have and how you can store it. In the process you may find you have stuff you just don’t use. Take advantage of the opportunity to purge the unwanted while planning your storage needs.
DO consider your pots, pans, plates, spices, cutting boards, gadgets, serving platters, baking equipment, trays and even think about where to store your appliances, garbage can and WINE! Drawer dividers can help organize small items while Rollout Shelves and deep drawers can hold pots, pans, dishes and even small appliances!
DON’T put everyday items out of reach or in awkward spaces. It’s important to consider workflow when you plan your storage solutions. Store flatware near the dishwasher or keep cooking utensils near the stove.
8: Are you maximizing headroom?
If you can, take your cabinetry all the way to ceiling. Dead space above your cabinets can create clutter and dust. Filling in the gaps created the illusion of height even when you have low ceilings! Do you have high ceilings? No one will ever reach those? You can use false cabinetry to enclose the space.
DO make use of as much space as possible. No one ever complained that they had too much room for storage.
DON’T keep that old soffit or drop ceiling from 1982. If there isn’t plumbing or ductwork hiding out in those soffits, RIP THEM OUT!
9: Do you need help?
If you want your home to hold its value, function in the real world and look good at the same time, working with professionals can be the way to go. Working with a professional can ensure you consider everything when planning your remodel. For example, you planned this beautiful space, did you consider lighting? A pro can help you come up with a lighting plan, help you figure out how many pendants to hang over your island or simply make sure enough light beams down on your gorgeous new space.
DO make sure you leave room in your budget for lighting. Lighting can make or break your space so plan ahead!
DON’T be afraid to ask questions. A pro will know and if they don’t, they will know where to find the answers. Asking questions before you finalize your project will spare you disappointment in the end or the added cost of changing something later.
10. Understand what will actually save you money.
We often go into renovations with inaccurate ideas of what will save money. Understand the biggest ways to save. Remember, DIY isn’t always cheaper, replacing an appliance can save money in the long run, keeping your current layout can save on plumbing and electrical and buying that faucet on the internet isn’t always the value savings it seems to be.
DO get multiple prices for your materials. It’s important in understanding the range or costs out there and to make sure you’re getting the best value for your money. Be transparent with your designer, they will make sure you’re getting an apples to apples comparison. Sure, that other shop was cheaper, but what are they selling you? Significant price differences should trigger you to ask questions and see what the differences are.
DON’T hire your neighbor and pay him in beer and pizza. Even if he’s a professional. Odds are he has a full-time job. You may be saving money but at what cost? If your job gets installed on nights and weekends you could be into this remodel for the long haul, or you may have to hire a pro to fix what your neighbor did.
11. Budget 10 to 20% more money than you expect to need.
Your project will likely cost more than you budget for and that’s okay if you planned ahead!
The truth is sometimes you forget to plan for something and sometimes unforeseen items can come up when renovating. If you’ve budgeted for it you’ll come out on top.
DO be very clear and organized about what you want with your contractor/ designer. This will eliminate regrets (or unwelcome surprises) later on.
DON’T keep your budget a secret. Communicating where you are in terms of budget to your Designer or Contractor will help them steer you in the right directions and keep you in budget.
12. Stay organized. Keep a folder with all the paperwork.
After you’ve figured it all out, keep a folder with all the details of your decisions, plans, blueprints, order forms, timeline, and renderings.
DO keep a folder that contains every piece of paper related to the project: receipts, bids, schedule, etc. You will refer to these, whether it’s to find a phone number for the appliance store or to review the Kitchen plans.
DON’T keep copies of old plans that never came to pass. Once you have pulled the trigger on the project make sure all the old renditions are tossed. Keeping your paperwork current will prevent confusion later on when your project begins.
If you are considering remodel your kitchen or bath we hope you will consider Page Kitchen and Bath Showrooms Located at 360 Manchester Rd. Poughkeepsie NY and 69 Route 22 Pawling NY.
Think Local First!