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Components of Your Kitchen Remodel

by Jennifer Weldon

Do you know you want to remodel your kitchen, but aren’t sure where to start? Kitchen remodels can be done on a grand scale involving a complete overhaul or a smaller, more focused approach where you are replacing a few key items. Sometimes changing just one or two aspects of a kitchen can create an entirely new look. Your budget parameters will determine how large of a remodel you are undertaking. Regardless of how much you are spending there are some components to consider when planning your kitchen remodel.

Examine your current kitchen

Before you can begin planning your kitchen remodel you need to take a good hard look at your current kitchen. Take stock of what you like and dislike, what you wish you had and what you could do without, and your main priorities of a new kitchen. Do you need more cabinet space? More counter work space? Would you enjoy new appliances? Would new colors and lighting do the trick? Once you determine the areas you want to focus on, you can begin designing your kitchen remodel.

Get new ideas

Now that you know what you want to change, where should you gather ideas? There are many sources on inspiration to draw on for your kitchen remodel. You can start with remodeling magazines and websites. Be sure to clip out or print out any ideas you like. Even if you just want to remember a particular light fixture, clip it to store in your idea folder. You may want to visit model homes, or even friend’s homes that have new kitchens. Ask them if you can take a photograph. Most people will be flattered that you like their taste. Perhaps the most valuable source of ideas will be a professional contractor or designer. They are often privy to the latest trends and products and have the experience to envision what would work in your kitchen.

The design

Armed with your folder of ideas and expert opinions you have gathered it is time to start laying out the design. Again, a professional contractor can help you design the layout of your kitchen remodel with an eye for practicality, budget, and feasibility. Some elements of the kitchen design to consider include:

• Space:

Are you working within the same space as your current kitchen or are you adding onto your home? Another option is to open up a wall that was closed in, or close in a space that was open to create more cabinet space.

• Cabinets:

Replacing the cabinets is a big expense and will greatly impact your budget. For smaller budgets you can replace the cabinet doors only, or repaint or stain the cabinets. These options will still evoke a new look in your kitchen at a lower cost. Don’t forget to pay attention to details such as door hardware and pull-out shelving.

• Countertops:

There are many different countertop materials you can use now to replace your current countertops. Your budget will probably narrow down your choices. If your goal is more work space consider adding a work island or freeing up more counter space by storing small appliances in cabinets.

All of these elements will help bring a design layout for your kitchen remodel into focus.

The steps of a kitchen remodel

A kitchen remodel can take up to 6 weeks or more depending on the extent of the work you are undertaking. Your professional contractor will prepare and implement the project schedule and handle all subcontractors so the entire project runs smoothly. Your contractor will also go over the schedule with you to set the proper expectations, but an outline is as follows:

• Identify and close off the work area
• Prep work including any demolition
• Any new framing of walls or windows
• HVAC, gas, plumbing, electricity lines roughed-in
• Code Inspections
• Insulation
• Flooring installation
• Install all electrical; including switches, fixtures and outlets
• Cabinet placement and installation
• Painting or wall coverings
• Final finish on the flooring
• Install countertops and sink
• Install new appliances
• Final inspections

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