Kitchen Renovation – Do’s and Don’ts

Renovating the kitchen is among the most expensive and exciting home remodels you can undertake. A new and modern kitchen seriously increases the value of the property, and it provides you with many comforts and luxuries. The whole renovation process is very tiring though because you have to consider every aspect very carefully. This includes all the technicalities and building work, the finances, as well as the style and design of your new kitchen. It’s a lot, especially if you don’t have previous experience in this matter. 

The following do’s and don’ts can serve you as a starting point in your kitchen renovation journey:

Kitchen Renovation Do’s 

Do match the kitchen style to the rest of the house

People often choose to renovate only parts of their homes instead of the whole thing. Which is understandable, because renovations are expensive and stressful. Moreover, since kitchen renovations are among the most expensive ones, it’s understandable that you’ll only focus on that part. During the planning process, it’s important to keep the design of the rest of the house in mind too, though. It’s not practical for the kitchen style to contradict everything else in the house. For instance, there is no point in creating a modern industrial kitchen, if the rest of the property is in a coastal cottage style or vice versa. So, when you make plans, consider how your new kitchen will fit the rest of the house.

Do create a work triangle 

This is kitchen design basics – all interior designers refer to the sink, stove and fridge as the golden triangle of the kitchen. If you want to create a truly functional space, you need to create an efficient flow between these three. Look at the kitchen plans, draw a line from the fridge to the sink, then from the sink to the stovetop, and back to the fridge. If the space is properly planned, you should draw a triangle. The shorter the space between these three is, the more comfortable the cooking process will be. If the appliances don’t form a triangle, maybe you should reconsider the positioning to create a better flow.

Do get an island if possible

The kitchen is the centre of every home, and the kitchen island is the perfect place for everyone to gather. So, if space allows it, consider installing a kitchen island. Having it also means extra storage space and an additional seating area, which is very useful during parties. With our busy lifestyles nowadays, hanging out in the living room is outdated. Now everyone passes through the kitchen on their way out, they grab something from the fridge in a hurry, and it’s a lot more comfortable to just sit somewhere in the kitchen. In addition, the kitchen island means more countertop space, which is always a bonus, especially if you have to cook large meals.

Do consider your lighting wisely

There are very specific guidelines when you choose kitchen lighting. The work area needs to be well lit, so when you’re considering the ceiling lights, position a few around the countertops, a few feet apart from each other. Moreover, since kitchen lighting is extremely important, you’ll need to consider something to go along with the recessed lights. Having a window for some natural light is highly recommended, it will create a cosy atmosphere, and it will provide better ventilation. Incorporate some accent lights or pendant lighting where appropriate – under the upper cabinets, above the sink, near the kitchen island. This type of lights is perfect for when the sun sets and you need some more ambient lighting.

Do hire tradies when necessary

Wanting to handle the entire renovation yourself is very admirable, but in some cases, doing repairs yourself can cause more damage than good, especially if you’re not familiar with the trade. This is why it’s recommended to hire a licensed tradie for the more complicated and technical tasks. For instance, if you have to deal with plumbing or electrical wires, it’s best to get someone experienced who will take care of everything and provide you with a guarantee for their work. Also, professionals are insured, which means that if they cause damage, it will be covered, but if you cause the damage – you will have to pay for it yourself.

Kitchen Renovation – Do’s and Don’ts

Kitchen Renovation Don’ts

Don’t ignore the budget

A full kitchen remodelling is a very expensive endeavour, and it needs to be planned wisely. You’ll need to map out every step before you start, and you’ll have to stick to a strict budget. It’s easy to get tempted by all the awesome innovations in kitchen technology, but you need to think about the big picture. If you manage to do a quality job on the basics, you’ll have the opportunity to upgrade easily later. A good trick is to create two lists for your needs – a mandatory list, and a wish list. The mandatory list includes everything you definitely need. The wish list is for luxuries, and only in case the budget allows it.

There are a few ideas you can consider to make your renovation project more affordable. For instance, you can renovate the kitchen cabinets instead of replacing them. Sometimes a little sanding and paint can do wonders. Replacing handles and pulls on doors, drawers and cabinets can help refresh the design of the room. Repainting walls and lacquering all the wooden furniture can also improve the looks significantly. In addition, some people even save from appliances, by buying the whole set in bulk from a wholesale supplier.

Don’t limit your storage options

Storage is the most often underestimated part of every kitchen. We don’t think we need it right until the moment we actually realize there’s not enough storage. So, if you have the chance to add additional storage during the renovation, go for it! Fortunately, there are many clever hidden kitchen storage solutions nowadays, even suitable for small spaces, where storage seems impossible.

You can take advantage of pull out pantries, which make kitchen organization a dream, smart wall-mounted shelving, which makes everything easily accessible, or cupboard organisers and additional detachable shelves, which help you find a place for everything. If you have a very big kitchen, you can also get one of those kitchen trolleys, they will help you transport heavy items around the room without the need to carry them. They can also serve as an additional table, a second counter to prepare food on, and a lot more.

Don’t rush the process 

You may be anxious to get this done as soon as possible, but rushing the entire kitchen renovation process is not a good idea. Since you want to do this once and for good, it’s better to slow down and consider all your options twice. The planning and design phase is most important, even though many people rush through it to get to the construction phase. Take your time to visualize the layout of the space, as well as the design and functionality of the kitchen. Every change and addition afterwards will cost you money and time, so make sure you’re happy with your plans.

Don’t choose the appliances last 

Many people blitz through the entire process and jump straight to renovating right after they choose the wall colour, while there are much more important things to consider during the planning. Choosing the appliances is one of the first steps, which often is left for last by mistake. Starting the process without choosing all the fittings beforehand, can lead to all kinds of unpleasant surprises. For instance, if you don’t choose your appliances in the beginning, you may end up designing too little space for them, and your choices will be severely limited. Finding or designing appliances in the correct size is much more expensive than planning the space according to the appliances you already have.

Don’t be too trendy

Renovating the kitchen is a huge process, and it’s not something we want to do too often. This is why you need to stay clear of the latest trends in colours and shapes and strive for a more classical and long-lasting style. This way you will avoid ending up with an outdated kitchen in two years or so. For instance, brown tiles and flower patterns were extremely trendy less than ten years ago, but nowadays they are outdated, and many homeowners who trusted the trend, now regret it. It applies for bold cabinets and funky kitchen flooring designs as well, they may seem like a good idea now, but that can quickly change. When you choose your new kitchen, strive for timeless, it’s the best choice.

About the author:

My name is Jane and I’m a home improvement coordinator at Fantastic Handyman Australia. My passion is to help people build the home of their dreams by sharing home renovation and interior design tips with them. I love to think out of the box in order to create lovely spaces.