Preparing to renovate your kitchen? Keep things stress-free (or, at least, low-stress!) by avoiding these common remodeling pitfalls.
While a significant expense for most homeowners, renovating your kitchen is also an investment that can last you for years to come and may even increase the overall value of your home. Therefore, there are a few tips you’ll want to keep in mind before you embark on your renovation journey—as well as a number of common mistakes you’ll want to try and avoid. Doing so will help make your time, effort, and money well worth it.
For starters, plan your kitchen accordingly. By this we mean take some time to consider your family’s needs and your lifestyle. This will help ensure everyone can get the most out of the space. Ask yourself how often you cook, what appliances you would like to dedicate extra time (and money) investing in, and how much storage you consider essential. Perhaps the kitchen is your family’s main space for socializing and entertaining, and sometimes even doubles as an after-school homework zone. In this case, you may want to pay extra attention to your seating choices and counter space, or maybe dedicate certain areas to serve more than one purpose.
If a lack of storage has been a problem for you, look at places where storage can be expanded and maximized. All of these factors are ones to keep in mind when selecting new features and planning the overall design of your kitchen.
Once you’ve thought out the answers to these questions, you’re ready to tackle your kitchen reno! Read on to help keep things moving as smoothly as possible and avoid some common kitchen renovation mistakes.
1: Going It Alone
Even if you’re the DIY type, make sure to consult a kitchen design expert before starting your project. A professional will be able to help fine-tune your remodel plan, offer tips and advice, and maybe even recommend some ideas you hadn’t already considered.
2: Overlooking Storage Details
Don’t skip over the seemingly small add-ons and storage features, like additional drawer dividers, or cabinet expansions like pantry pullouts and lazy Susans. These details will not only increase your kitchen’s storage efficiency, but will also save you money as they are much more costly to add on down the road.
3: Forgetting Your Workflow
When planning you’re remodeling, remember your kitchen’s busiest areas: the sink, stove, and refrigerator. Make sure these areas and appliances are in an efficient location that is relevant to one another. Many designers refer to this as the kitchen “work triangle”.
4: Giving Up Counter Space
Counter space is one of the most important elements of your kitchen, so don’t settle for less! Extend your counter work space by using decorative corbels, or shelving supports, to create added room for your countertop.
5: Not Protecting Surrounding Spaces
While completing your remodel, make sure to protect other rooms and surfaces from paint drippings and debris. This will help save on clean-up time after the renovation is completed. Here, a “mudroom” locks in dust while giving easy access in and out of the area. Create your own using plastic sheeting, spring-loaded poles, and an adhesive zipper.
6: Forgetting Your Budget
Creating a budget is an essential part of your remodel. Decide what features of your kitchen are the most important, and allocate your finances accordingly. Keep in mind that kitchen cabinets usually take up about one-third of the typical remodel budget.
7: Choosing Appliances Last
If you’re giving your kitchen a total makeover, avoid choosing your appliances last. It’ll be much easier to choose cabinets and countertops to fit appliances, like your refrigerator and dishwasher, rather than the other way around.
8: Neglecting Your Backsplash
It’s one of the main focal points of your kitchen, so why not make a statement? Play with color by using different shades of the same tone, which can add a very sophisticated and put-together look to your kitchen. Then, get more of our tips for choosing the best backsplash for your space here.
9: Leaving Spaces Underutilized
Take advantage of unused areas in your kitchen. Toe-kick storage located beneath cabinet doors, for example, is a creative place to store items that aren’t used on a daily basis, like serveware, linens, or a spare step ladder. Maximizing your kitchen’s floor plan to find additional storage opportunities will also help keep your countertops free of clutter.
10: Not Exploring Outside the Box
When designing your new kitchen, consider creative ways to transform traditional pieces, like cabinets, into something functional and unique. For example, a standalone hutch cabinetry can not only serve as storage, but also transform into a handy reminder station with the addition of dry-erase board inserts.
11: Forgetting the Big Picture
When you’re planning your kitchen remodel, remember to consider every element including your wall color, cabinet colors, flooring, and hardware, and how it all ties together.