With the holidays just around the corner (hard to believe – given the fact I am writing this with the temperature in the 90s), if you are thinking about remodeling your kitchen and want it done by the holidays, the time to start is now.
There are dozens of things you should consider PRIOR to even beginning the demolition. But here are just a few to get you started.
- First, do not remodel the kitchen if the only reason you are doing it is because you are trying to sell your house. Yes, kitchen renovations are one of the best home improvement investments around. According to Remodeling Magazine, in the Chicago area, homeowners recoup 69% of the cost of a major kitchen remodel . But you are still not getting your full investment back. So remodel the kitchen for yourself.
- On the other hand, you don’t want to hurt the resale value with a kitchen that is out of place in your neighborhood. So check out the kitchens in the neighborhood and see what is appropriate. For example, if everybody has cherry cabinets with granite countertops, you don’t necessarily want to ride with the herd, but you don’t want to stray too far either. For example, you don’t want linoleum countertops.
- Start by thinking of the function and flow of the kitchen. Consider everything, from the time you walk into the kitchen with groceries to the time you start the dishwasher. This will help you determine where to put cabinets, appliances, the eating area, etc.
- The kitchen is a gathering space. Whether it is kids doing their homework or guests mingling during a party, the kitchen is the place to be. So make sure there is plenty of room for people to congregate, and there is sufficient counter space for kids to do their homework, etc.
- Many people are also making the kitchen part of the greater house, knocking down walls so they can see directly into the living room or family room. That way, while people are cooking, they can feel connected to the people in other rooms. Also, it allows them to see the big screen TV in the family room.
- How many cooks? When considering the kitchen’s functionality, think about how many people are cooking (and whether they are cooking or baking). If there are two cooks, you’ll want a bigger working area. This may necessarily take away from entertaining space.
Note: Maurice Forde is President of Forde Windows & Remodeling, a leading kitchen contractor in Chicago. To see a portfolio of the company’s kitchen projects, click here.