Planning a kitchen remodel is overwhelming. Even if you have some clear ideas about how you want the finished kitchen to look, deciding where to start can be a challenge. It’s not as simple as revamping your lawn; using an electric lawn mower won’t solve your problems indoors. After all, this particular room usually contains many fixtures and items you may want to replace, including cabinets, countertops, and appliances.
The following recommendations help simplify the process. If you’re looking to plan a kitchen remodel, keep these tips in mind
Define What You Want to Change
- Odds are good you want to remodel your kitchen because you’re unhappy with its current design. Thus, it makes sense to start by listing what specific problems you have with it.
- Are the cabinets or appliances outdated, or has the flooring worn down? Do you feel like you don’t have enough counter space to prepare meals? Is your storage space insufficient for your needs? Does the overall space feel cramped?
- Once you’ve determined what specific aspects of the kitchen you want to change, it’s much easier to develop a plan.
Consider the Layout
There are many layout designs to consider when remodelling a kitchen. The following are some of the more popular kitchens remodel styles:
L-Shape – This design is favoured for its practicality. For the average homeowner, it tends to offer the right balance of countertop space and storage.
U-Shape – This design, which wraps around three walls, offers more counter space but can make smaller kitchens feel cramped. You can easily change an L-shape to a U-shape design by adding a peninsula.
Galley – Is your kitchen narrow, with two doors on each side? If so, the galley layout may be ideal. It consists of two parallel runs of countertops and cabinetry. It’s a perfect way to make efficient use of a small space.
Assess how much space you have to work with when choosing your new layout. Remember, these are simply the basic designs; you can make other adjustments, like adding an island to a U-shape layout if space allows.
Keep Safety in Mind
The National Kitchen and Bath Association offers kitchen remodel guidelines designed to ensure kitchens remain both comfortable and safe. The following are some of its more important design tips:
- Keep walkways between walls and counters (or appliances) at least 36 in. wide.
- The total size of the work triangle (sink to the range to the refrigerator) should not exceed 26 ft. No side of the triangle may be longer than 9 ft. or shorter than 4 ft.
- Install the dishwasher within 36 in. of the sink. If you have multiple sinks, install it near the primary one.
- Set aside space for both a garbage and recycling bin.
- Total countertop space should be a minimum of 158 in.
If you’re on a budget, you may be able to save money by renewing elements of your kitchen, instead of remodelling it entirely. For example, if you’re pleased with the overall shape of your cabinets, and they don’t need any structural reinforcement, you may want to reface or refinish them. This is less expensive than installing completely new cabinetry. By looking for ways to optimize your current fixtures, you can reduce costs substantially. Most importantly, though, be honest about which steps you’re comfortable handling on your own. Remodelling a kitchen can be complicated. If you’re a DIY enthusiast, it can also be a very fun project.
Get to work with an oscillating multi-tool that can handle many of the more simple parts of this process, but don’t tackle any steps you find particularly intimidating. You will get better results if you enlist the help of someone who has the right experience from the beginning. By keeping the suggestions here in mind, you’re also more likely to be pleased with the finished project.