Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ideas for Major Kitchen Remodeling Projects

Ideas for Major Kitchen Remodeling Projects

Are you tired of your outdated kitchen? Frustrated by a poor layout, aging appliances and a lack of modern conveniences? If you are, it may be time to consider some ideas for major kitchen remodeling projects. A kitchen remodel can increase the value of your home, but major kitchen remodeling projects are both expensive and time consuming, so think carefully about ideas for major kitchen remodeling projects before you begin your remodel.

1. Finding Ideas for Major Kitchen Remodeling Projects
Where can you look for ideas for kitchen remodeling? You have a lot of choices, and simply looking around is the best place to start when you are planning kitchen remodeling projects. You may want to visit home improvement centers or kitchen design specialists early on in the planning process. Even if every model kitchen is not right for your space, you may see things you like about each. There are also many publications and websites devoted to kitchen remodeling. You may even find web possibilities that allow you to input specifics and design your dream kitchen online. This can be a good way to work out ideas for kitchen remodeling.

All of these can help you get ideas for kitchen remodeling. You may also have ideas based on your own needs. Perhaps you need more counter space or need to modernize a very outdated kitchen. You might even be changing or altering your home's floor plan to integrate a more open kitchen. You may even want to start a file of ideas for kitchen remodeling when you begin to consider planning a kitchen remodel, with notes of what you like and do not like about each kitchen design possibility. 2. Starting a Kitchen Remodeling Project
How do you begin the process of remodeling your kitchen? First, you need to determine exactly what you want done in your kitchen. Do you need new countertops, floors, appliances or cabinetry? Are you going to change the fundamental layout of your kitchen, or simply improve what is there? You may want to start by dreaming big, then adjusting as your budget allows. Consider prioritizing your goals, so you can choose what is most important to you in your kitchen remodeling plans.

Once you have some idea of what you need to do, after consider your ideas for kitchen remodeling, you will need to assess the available funds. Minor kitchen remodeling projects may be do it yourself options that can be done on a reasonable budget, but you may well need to consider a home improvement loan for a major kitchen remodeling project. You may want to consider consulting a kitchen design studio, home improvement center or contractor for estimates at this point. In many cases, you will find that you may need to downgrade your kitchen improvement plans to meet your budget.

You will have many decisions to make as you begin considering remodeling your kitchen, ranging from flooring and appliances to counters and finishes. Your kitchen should fit in with the style of your home, your lifestyle, and even whether or not you particularly enjoy cooking. Do integrate items that you know you will use into your new kitchen, whether that is a wine cooler or space for the kids to have an afternoon snack.

3. Planning Your Kitchen Remodel
You have several options when planning your kitchen remodeling project. You may want to talk to several contractors and designers before choosing the one that is right for your kitchen design needs. You can use a professional kitchen designer, and some retail outlets even offer free kitchen design services if you purchase your cabinetry and appliances through them. Some contractors, particularly those specializing in kitchen remodeling may also offer kitchen design services. Even if you have a good idea of what you want in your kitchen, a professional may have some helpful design ideas that you had not considered.

If you are planning a smaller kitchen remodeling project, you may plan to do it yourself. In that case, be certain that you have all the necessary skills, and carefully consider what aspects of the project for which you might need professional assistance. Plumbing, electrical and carpentry work may well require professional assistance. On the other hand, if you are fairly handy around the house, refinishing cabinetry, adding a ready to assemble island, or tiling a backsplash can all change a kitchen quite a lot with just a reasonable budget and a few weekends worth of your time. Some small kitchen remodeling projects can be done by your average homeowner, but many cannot, and you should consider this when planning your kitchen remodel or looking at ideas for kitchen remodeling.

4. Total Kitchen Renovation
Many people with older homes may find themselves considering totally remodeling their kitchens. A total kitchen remodeling project will often involve replacing all of the cabinets, appliances, and flooring. In an older home, it might also include modernizing wiring or plumbing. Some people may also want to open the kitchen up to other rooms of the home to modernize the layout. Be certain that you choose a good and reputable contractor if planning this sort of kitchen remodeling project.

Ideas for kitchen remodeling projects of this scope are often easy to find. You may well be able to create your dream kitchen. You should also consider what aspects, if any, of your current kitchen you may want to keep. Beautiful cabinetry should be kept and preserved, or original floors refinished in an older home. While no one wants that dark and dated 1970's kitchen, if you live in a much older home, consider trying to retain the character of your home and kitchen while planning your kitchen remodeling projects.

Expect a total kitchen remodeling project to take quite some time, often as much as several months. It will be costly, and in many cases quite inconvenient. You may even want to spend some time away from home while the work is being done to reduce the stress of the remodeling project.

5. A Major Kitchen Remodel
Major kitchen remodeling projects are not so different than a total remodel. You may well be replacing cabinets, flooring and appliances; however, you may not be changing the basic structure of your kitchen in a fundamental way. As with a total kitchen remodeling project you will need a good contractor, and may need the services of a kitchen designer.

Ideas for kitchen remodeling of this scope include replacing cabinetry, adding a custom island, bringing in new appliances or flooring or having your kitchen cabinets refaced. Refacing your kitchen cabinets is one great way to change the look of your kitchen and keep your budget intact. If you have a well laid out kitchen and good quality cabinetry, consider investigating this option when planning your kitchen remodeling projects. Opting to reface rather than replace your cabinets may allow you to upgrade other appliances or countertops.

While a major kitchen remodeling project will not render your kitchen unusable for as long as a total kitchen renovation, you should still be prepared to use a microwave and crockpot, and eat quite a lot of takeout for the time that the kitchen is undergoing remodeling.

6. Smaller Kitchen Remodeling Projects
A variety of smaller kitchen remodeling projects can change your kitchen in big ways. These smaller projects are often quite affordable and can be done by many homeowners on their own. What are some ideas for kitchen remodeling projects you can do yourself?

Paint can dramatically change your kitchen, and is a very doable and affordable change. Whether you paint just the walls or opt to prime and paint your cabinets, this option is one of the best ways to remodel your kitchen on a tight budget. Many types of flooring, including some laminate possibilities and tiles of various sorts can be done by a handy homeowner. If your flooring is dated and worn, this can be another kitchen remodeling project you may want to consider. Tiled backsplashes are also a popular choice when you want to add color and style to your kitchen without a big investment.

Countertops, while not a major remodeling project, may well require the assistance of a professional installation service. Many stores offer installation if you purchase appliances from them, so a new stove or dishwasher may be a remodeling project that is easier than you might expect.

7. Tips and Tricks to Survive Remodeling Your Kitchen
Remodeling your kitchen can be stressful. While there are many magazines offering ideas for kitchen remodeling, often no one tells you how to survive the remodeling process. First, expect that one member of the family will need to be in close, regular contact with your contractor about how the work is progressing and what remains to be done. This will help your kitchen remodeling project stay on task and on budget.

Daily life will also be substantially impacted by your kitchen remodeling project. Obviously, during much of the process, your kitchen will be unavailable for daily use. You may need to designate an area as a substitute kitchen. A buffet in the dining room may work well, if equipped with a microwave, toaster, coffee pot and other necessities. You may find that it is easier to use paper plates and cups to avoid having to wash dishes in the bathroom. In some cases, you may even want to move into a suite-type hotel for a few weeks, during the worst of the kitchen remodeling to avoid living with dust and risking the children getting underfoot.

8. How to Choose a Contractor for Your Kitchen Remodel
Choosing a contractor for your kitchen remodeling project can be one of the most challenging aspects of this whole process. Needless to say, it is critical that you hire a reputable contractor. Be clear with the contractor about your budget, timeline and needs.

If you know friends who have recently remodeled their kitchens, talk with them about who they used. If you know skilled trades people, such as home builders, they may have suggestions as well. Word of mouth is one of the best ways to locate reputable business people.

You might also consider using the installations services available through your local home improvement center for your new cabinetry, flooring and appliances; however, this may require you take an active role in organizing your kitchen remodeling project. Kitchen design centers can also offer recommendations for good contractors in your area. Keep the specifics of your kitchen remodeling project in mind when choosing a contractor for the project. If you are changing the structural layout of your home, an expert in that may be best, whereas custom cabinetry requires different skills.

9. The Benefits of Remodeling Your Kitchen
Remodeling your kitchen can improve the overall value of your home. While many home improvement projects will net you a minimal change in the value of your home, modern kitchens are critical to most home buyers today. An investment in a kitchen remodeling project is generally a smart one. If you do expect to sell your home, choose neutral colors and high quality materials when planning your kitchen remodeling project.

A remodeled kitchen, particularly if you make smart choices during the design process, is a center of your home. It is a lovely space in which to live with your family or entertain guests. A well designed kitchen includes ample storage and workspace, and may even integrate space for a home computer, television and other needs. Remodeling your kitchen may also allow you to choose and install more energy efficient appliances, thus saving you money in utility costs over time.

As you look at ideas for kitchen remodeling, think carefully about how you use your kitchen, and your long term plans for your home, whether you expect to stay in this home or move in a few years. Design a kitchen that appeals to you and a possible future buyer for the best return on your kitchen remodeling investment. While remodeling your kitchen is certainly challenging and stressful, this is one of the most rewarding of all remodeling projects, both in terms of daily use and home value.

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