Top 3 things to consider when remodeling your kitchen
A good kitchen has to fill many roles. Sure, there’s the obvious one – a place where you can prepare and serve food. But cooking takes a lot of time (cleaning, too), so it needs to be a place where you feel comfortable, relaxed, and happy.
The kitchen is also a common meeting spot for when you have a friend over for a cup of coffee or a whole bunch of friends over for a party. For parents, it often becomes the base of operations where you serve the kids breakfast, give them their lunch before sending them off to school, and try to curb their sugar intake during snack-time.
It’s not surprising then that the kitchen, along with the bathroom (another major base of operations, if you know what I mean), is one of the most popular rooms for homeowners to remodel. Before you start thinking about a long and possibly expensive home improvement project, though, consider these three factors:
Probably the easiest (and most fun) part of remodeling a kitchen is envisioning what you want it to look like. Much like your wardrobe, your home is a reflection of who you are as a person, and few rooms offer as many opportunities to express yourself through design and decor as the kitchen. Whatever your style – classic, modern, rustic, retro – your kitchen is a perfect canvas.
Maybe you’re a quirky person with a nostalgic heart. Instead of a boxy white refrigerator, why not get a curvy vintage model? Heck, you can make the whole place look like a 1950s rock ‘n’ roll diner if you want. Perhaps you like high-tech gadgetry. Did you know you can cook a meal in your crock pot using your smartphone? Or that Wi-Fi equipped scales can help you readjust entire recipes to accommodate the ingredients you have on hand? Even without going retro or futuristic, there’s a lot to think about: Paint colors, cabinet shapes and decorations. Go wild.
If form is all about exercising your right brain’s emotional side, then function is where your left brain’s practical side comes in. It’s important to find a balance between both. Your kitchen should be a place with an atmosphere and style that makes you happy to be there, but it also needs to be a place where all your meal-making needs are met.
When planning to remodel, think about all the necessities a good kitchen requires in order to fulfill its purpose. Make a list of important appliances. Think about how much storage you’ll need for food, utensils and cookware. Remember: Plenty of countertop space is a must when you’re doing meal prep. If you like eating in your kitchen, make sure to leave room for a dining nook or a central island. Last but not least, try not to cram too much into too small a space. Cooking is a lot easier when you can navigate your kitchen with convenience and ease, after all.
The final consideration is both the least pleasant and the most important: Affordability. Your imagination can come up with all kinds of cool renovations, but only your bank account can make them a reality. How much you have isn’t the only thing worth considering, though. There’s also the question of worth.
For instance, if you’re looking to add value to your home for resale, remodeling the kitchen could be a great way to do that. Or it could be a money pit. Using a seller closing costs calculator can help you determine if the added expense is worth adding on top of everything else. The truth is, not every kitchen needs a full-blown makeover. If funds are tight or your kitchen is mostly satisfactory, ask yourself if you can’t achieve the same goals with just a few small changes instead. Sometimes less really is more.