The kitchen is the heart of every home. It is where families and friends gather, where meals are made, and the first place house hunters go to see if a property is right for them. That is why kitchen renovations can do a lot for your life. Changing the look of a kitchen and updating the appliances could make your house into a dream home, or it could be the move that gets your house off the real estate faster than before.
Regardless of the reason for remodeling your kitchen, knowing the process can help you a great deal. That’s why we’ve put together a step-by-step guide for remodeling your kitchen.
Step 1: Your Must-Haves
There are dozens of ways to go about the first step, but most people will consider all the things they consider essential to a functional kitchen. You may even hire a kitchen designer who will sketch up some pictures of the potential remodel for you to better visualize the end result, but that’s optional.
Unless you have an endless amount of money, chances are that you are going to have to narrow down some of the must-haves on your list to choose what is truly important. Here are some questions to help you figure out what you need in your kitchen the most:
- Do you need more storage space?
- Do you need space for entertaining?
- What are the pain points in your current kitchen? What things must absolutely change?
- Will you need to change the layout?
- Does anything need to be updated?
- Are you hoping to sell your home soon? What can you update to add the most value to the kitchen?
Step 2: Setting a Budget
According to HomeAdvisor, the average cost of a kitchen remodel ranges between $13,272 to $37,520, but there are some determining factors. By answering the questions from the first step, you should be able to estimate how much the remodel will cost you.
So then, how do you calculate a realistic price range for the kitchen renovation? Take 5-15% of your home’s total value. That will be a good starting point for your budget. For example, if your home is valued at $300,000, then a kitchen renovation will be around 10% of that—around $30,000. The cost then breaks down into categories, such as cabinetry, countertops, appliances, plumbing, design, lighting, windows and doors, and so on.
Also be sure to include the cost of hiring help in your budget.
Step 3: Hire a Contractor
While you might be tempted to DIY remodeling your kitchen, don’t. There is too much to do, even for someone with experience. It’s a smart choice to bring in some professional help. Generally, contractors charge around 30% of the cost of the project. You may be able to save some costs of labor by prepping the space for the professionals, but be sure to discuss that with the company.
Always make sure the contractors provide evidence that they are insured, licensed and bonded.
Step 4: Clear The Space
If you can, clear as much of the kitchen as you can on your own. Remove cabinet doors then unscrew cabinets from the walls. Next, removing trimming from doorways and windows. Put them somewhere safe if you plan on reusing them. Shut off water and electricity before removing appliances and lighting fixtures. Be sure to cover exposed wires.
Step 5: Plumbing
Since the walls are going to be open, call in a plumber to inspect the pipes. Anything that is galvanized is best replaced, especially if it’s under the sink.
Step 6: Electrical
When people remodel kitchens, they usually decide to update their lighting fixtures. Whether you opt for pendant lights or something else, make sure that the lighting you choose meets the city code requirements. Furthermore, you might want to upgrade the breaker if you are in an older home. Every appliance in your kitchen should have its own circuit.
Electrical should consider the following:
- Overhead lighting and dimmer switches
- Wiring and outlets for the appliances – dishwasher, refrigerator, microwave, and also countertop appliances
- Wiring for a range hood
- One 120-volt or 220-volt outlet for the stove top and oven
Step 7: Drywall and Joint Compound
Once the plumbing and electrical components have been squared away, it’s time to hang the drywall. It’s an easy job, one that you may be able to do yourself. Make sure you have proper tools, like drywall screws, mudding knives, a T-square, and so on.
Although drywall installation is uncomplicated, mudding is a bit more complex. Mud is the joint compound that is used to close the joints between the pieces of drywall. This is a lengthy process, taking at least three days, since the mud has to dry.
Step 8: Painting The Kitchen
Anyone can paint, but DIYers usually cannot do it with the speed and accuracy that professionals can. Whichever route you choose, make sure you are using quality items. Get top-quality paint. Semi-gloss is the best for kitchens because it is easy to clean and does not retain any moisture. Avoid trays, since the paint can get tacky quickly.
Step 9: Flooring and Baseboards
This step and the next are interchangeable. Some builders will prefer laying down the flooring after cabinets have been installed, so be sure to ask your contractors. When it comes to flooring, the best options are ones that will hold up to the high traffic of the kitchen. You should also swap out anything synthetic for an eco-friendly choice, since that will increase the value of your kitchen.
Bamboo and cork are good options for kitchens, but they cannot get wet. Linoleum is great, as well, since it is made of linseed oil and other natural plant fibers. It is also water resistant and has a lifespan of around 40 years.
Step 10: Cabinets and Cabinet Hardware
Hire a professional to install the cabinets. Pros will make sure everything is level. When you purchase the cabinets from the store, they should have their own quality installers to come do the job. Never have cabinets installed before the electrical work and plumbing, since that could mean having to remove the cabinets all over again.
Step 11: Countertop and Backsplash
While this whole process is happening, you can order your countertop and, if desired, a matching backsplash. A lot of remodeling is centered around the countertop, since the size of the counter, the colors, and the material can give you plenty of inspiration for cabinetry and appliances. If your countertops are custom, then the fabricators are going to want to take measures. It may take several days or weeks before the delivery can be made, so plan accordingly.
The best countertops are stone—quartz, marble, and granite. Though quartz and granite may be expensive, such countertops are durable and retain their value extremely well.
The backsplash is usually installed simultaneously with the counterops, especially if you chose the same material. However, you can also get backsplashes that are tile, wood, concrete, or aluminum. Those will be installed after the countertop.
Step 12: Appliance Installation
The last step of remodeling a kitchen is installing the new appliances. Electricians will again return to align outlets with the backsplash and possibly add a few. The range hood will be installed first, since it may require a roof jack. Next comes the refrigerator, dishwasher, and stove. The sink may also be installed during this step, if it is not an under-mount type.
Remodeling a kitchen is a long process that requires a number of steps. Order what you can before the project begins, such as your countertops and your appliances, so that way you are ready on the day of installation. By planning accordingly, you will be able to enjoy your new kitchen sooner. Whether you are renovating to make your kitchen into everything you ever dreamed of, or you’re planning to sell, the project will definitely be worthwhile in the end.
Looking for custom countertops to complete your brand new kitchen? Marble Concepts is a premier stone fabricator that has dozens of options for your next kitchen renovation. Call or contact us today by filling out the form.