Kitchen Remodeling Options for Your Home

Kitchen Remodeling Options for Your Home

kitchen renovation is a major undertaking. Before you begin your project, you will need to take a hard look at how you are using your current kitchen and what you want this remodel to accomplish. The Day in the Life of Your Kitchen Questionnaire will help you assess the activities that take place in your kitchen and how the room is stacking up to your needs.

After completing the Day in the Life of Your Kitchen Questionnaire, think about what you want and need from a kitchen remodel and fill out the Kitchen Goals Worksheet. You’ll use these exercises to create a road map to a successful kitchen renovation.

And don’t forget about your budget! Create a feasible and workable budget to follow.

Once you get a better idea of your remodeling plan, explore kitchen designs that suit your daily needs and special occasions, whether you are an epicurean or an entertainer. Find your inspiration by looking at different designs.

Before you begin your kitchen renovation, seriously review how you use your current kitchen and set goals for your remodel. This way, you can stay on track as you make important decisions about floor plan, appliances, cabinetry and more.

Creating a Gourmet Kitchen
An epicurean’s kitchen is equipped with professional appliances, sturdy and easy-to-clean surfaces, and storage for specialty items—a spice collection, a range of pots, pans and utensils. The layout should focus on zones for preparing food, cooking meals, cleaning up and serving. When choosing appliances, the focus is on performance.

The party is at your house—and specifically, in your kitchen. Ever notice how no matter the size of your kitchen, that’s where everyone gathers? A home can have an ample dining room and living area, but the guests will choose to congregate in a narrow Pullman kitchen.

Size is certainly not a prerequisite for a great entertaining kitchen—though square footage will determine whether you can include features like an island or butler’s pantry, if you’re not the cook for your parties. When designing a kitchen that functions as an effective entertaining space, it’s all about the specialty features that are integrated in the space to make serving food and beverage easy.

While gourmet and entertaining kitchens certainly can be outfitted with family-friendly features, some households focus entirely on creating a space that works for the hectic daily lives of everyone who lives there. This means accommodating children who might fix their own after school snacks, a parent who needs a space to organize meals and activities, and even pets that eat in the kitchen.

Interestingly, many homeowners plan kitchen remodeling projects around their holiday plans, says Nancy Divita, showroom manager at Trevarrow Inc. “That’s the time they want to show off their cooking because it brings joy and validation,” she says. So if keeping side dishes warm while the turkey roasts is typically a pain, they might justify installing a warming drawer, for example. But keep in mind as you choose features for a family kitchen, the real value comes from space planning and cabinetry features that improve how the kitchen functions every day.

And, remember those children grow, and a kitchen remodel should last at least 10 years. “You want the kitchen to be adaptable so it will work for having kids around the house and empty nesters,” says Mary Jo Pierce, principal, Mary Jo Pierce Inc.

Before you begin your kitchen renovation, seriously review how you use your current kitchen and set goals for your remodel. This way, you can stay on track as you make important decisions about floor plan, appliances, cabinetry and more.

Easy-to-clean surfaces. Wipeability is key with family. Quartz surfaces, a man-made product, are durable, not as porous as natural stone (so less likely to stain). For budget-savvy households, laminate is available in a variety of colors and patterns that can even emulate granite. It’s not the real deal, so don’t expect to fool home buyers if you put the house up for sale. But it does stand up to spills. When choosing materials, consider their forgiveness if glasses are carelessly clunked on the counter top. For example, glass tile is not shock absorbent; and quartz cushions impact better than granite.

Accessible pantry. Storage for groceries is a top concern for families, and the “consumables” zone often doesn’t get the attention it deserves during planning, according to Blum, Inc., a producer of cabinet hardware. Pantry cabinets with drawers that fully extend make it easy to reach items. Perhaps children have designated pantry drawers that are lower and contain parent-approved foods. “Promoting self-sufficiency in the kitchen and healthy eating habits is important to consider,” Pierce says. “If you can, make it easy for kids to make the things they like to eat.”

Open plan. The kitchen and living room are practically synonymous in a family’s home. One should flow into the other, and the lines between the two are getting more blurred. “The whole point is to build this beautiful kitchen that is user-friendly, but now you have to have those comforts that you used to have in your living room,” Bergin says.

Snack bar. Features like an island will multi-task in a family kitchen, serving as a snack bar, dining area or place for children to do homework while a parent prepares dinner.

Refrigerator drawers. Refrigerator configurations that include separate drawers are convenient for families that stock specific items for children, giving them permission to help themselves to food in the kids’ drawer. Also consider point-of-service refrigerators placed in convenient zones —even mudrooms.

Convection microwave. Speaking of multi-tasking in the kitchen, this microwave works double time as a device for reheating and cooking, and a fast-speed oven. “A microwave can take up a great deal of real estate in the kitchen, whether installed over an oven, in a pantry or built into cabinetry,” Divita says. “The ability to use the microwave as a real convection oven takes the use of that microwave one step further. It acts as a small oven, which saves you money as opposed to putting in a double-oven.”