Make sure you check out these helpful tips BEFORE you start your Kitchen Project!
I’ve been with Clarke for more than a decade now and I’ve encountered thousands of homeowners working to create their dream kitchens. I love when a designer suggests that they start with the appliances, because the choices are endless and can make a big difference in the design of a kitchen. Here’s a quick overview of my five things to consider BEFORE you start that project…
By Clarke South Norwalk Showroom Manager Marco Barallon
First and foremost, consider the functionality of the space to be remodeled. Few dispute the fact that the kitchen is the heart of the home, so carefully consider what will become part of this project. Will the family room or great room be integrated into the kitchen area? Will every day dining take place in the space? Many homes are eliminating formal dining spaces completely. If you are actually making changes that alter the footprint of the space, either an architect or kitchen designer will need to be part of the project in order to provide plans for the contractor you hire.
Take your time and find someone that fits your personal style and someone that you can trust to help with the numerous decisions you must make and requirements that will be needed.
2. AppliancesWhen a professional is hired to help with the layout, one of their first requests will be to have the homeowner select the appliances desired. This will allow the designer to provide several different options for the space. While the homeowner at the outset rarely considers this step, the appliance selections can truly change the home. Many homeowners start a remodeling project due to an appliance needing to be replaced. This offers an opportunity that often allows the homeowners to elevate their cooking ability and enables them to achieve restaurant-quality cooking levels for their family. A variety of new features and options with brands like Wolf appliances, along with increased cooking speed, are usually benefits of selecting new appliances. Food preservation is something that should not be overlooked when selecting refrigeration. Proper selection of refrigeration, for instance incorporating Sub-Zero into your project, could save hundred of dollars in grocery purchases annually. This all equates to a healthier family lifestyle.
Energy efficiency is also key for families and the environment. Energy Star appliances are key, especially when considering cleanup (dishwashers.)
3. StorageThe accumulation of cooking tools, decorative accessories and the increase in family size all have an effect on us as homeowners. This leads to a need for more space and storage for all of our “goodies.”
With new drawer designs, roll-outs, and unique solutions for necessities such as cling wrap, foil, and paper towels, most cabinet manufacturers have an array of products within their lines to fit any budget. Need spice storage? No problem. Want a plate rack or tray storage, you can find it.
With the increase in space comes more of a need to add secondary trash, another sink location to help in prep/clean-up and with today’s products and desire for efficiency, you may want to consider another dishwasher if the family starts to increase exponentially or your lifestyle includes frequent entertaining.
4. Re-SaleOf course re-sale must always be in the back of our minds when considering a remodeling project. Will you be living in the home for a short term (possibly 3-5 years) or do you plan to stay longer? If your answer is short term, make sure to keep the new design easy for many lifestyles. Try to keep personal taste and elements unique to your family to a minimum. Always make sure to incorporate high-performance appliance brands like Sub-Zero and Wolf, as this will be a huge selling feature when your home is compared to others for sale in the neighborhood. Materials, countertops and hardware should all be considered as key in resale. And don’t forget to provide great lighting, as this can (with the appliances) be the element that sets your home apart.
5. InvestmentHow much do we budget? Base your initial thoughts on your surrounding housing market. This will enable you to stay within the parameters needed for re-sale. Again, when prioritizing the elements you will include, the return on your investment for high-performance appliances is one of the key elements. Both the durability (long lifetime) of these appliances and the consumer appeal make them a must to incorporate into your remodel. Classics like a Wolf stainless gas range never go out of style. If you are remodeling with resale in mind, this is how you want to consider your investment. The latest trend may not be the smartest option, but a functional, energy-efficient space that preserves your food, wine and the health of your family will always be desirable whether you stay in your home for two decades or sell in three years. Investing in your home is still a very sound idea.