Kitchen Makeover Strategies
Kitchen Makeover Strategies
Homeowners spend more money on kitchen remodeling than on any other home improvement project, and with good reason. Kitchens are the hub of home life and a source of pride.
You can recover a significant portion of kitchen remodeling costs through the value the project brings to your home. A complete kitchen renovation with a national median cost of $80,000 recovers about 75% of the initial project cost at the home’s resale, according to the “Remodeling Impact Report” from the National Association of REALTORS®.
The project gets a big thumbs-up from homeowners, too. Those polled in the report gave their new kitchen a “joy score” of 9.8 (out of 10!), a rating based on those who said they were happy or satisfied with their remodeling.
Planning your kitchen remodel should take more time than the actual construction. If you plan well, you can minimize the amount of time you’re inconvenienced by construction mayhem. Plus, you’re more likely to stay on budget.
How much time should you spend planning? The National Kitchen and Bath Association recommends at least six months. That way, you won’t be tempted to change your mind during construction and create change orders, which will inflate construction costs and hurt your return on investment.
Some tips on planning:
Study your existing kitchen: How wide is the doorway into your kitchen? Many homeowners make the mistake of buying an extra-large fridge only to find they can’t get it in the doorway. To avoid mistakes like this, create a drawing of your kitchen with measurements for doorways, walkways, counters, etc. And don’t forget height.
Think about traffic patterns: Work aisles should be a minimum of 42 inches wide and at least 48 inches wide for households with multiple cooks.
Design with ergonomics in mind: Drawers or pull-out shelves in base cabinets, counter heights that can adjust up or down, and a wall oven instead of a range are all features that make a kitchen accessible to everyone — and a pleasure to work in.
Plan for the unforeseeable: Even if you’ve planned down to the number of nails you’ll need in your remodel, expect the unexpected. Build in a little leeway for completing the remodel. Want it done by Thanksgiving? Then plan to be done before Halloween.
Choose all your fixtures and materials before starting: Contractors will be able to make more-accurate bids, and you’ll lessen the risk of delays because of back orders.
Don’t be afraid to seek help: A professional designer can simplify your kitchen remodel. Pros help make style decisions, foresee potential problems, and schedule contractors. Most kitchen designers charge $65 to $250 per hour, or 10% to 20% of your total project cost.
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