A kitchen renovation is definitely NOT for the faint of heart. If you are planning to take on this huge project, be prepared. Maybe you’ve done some updates to your home and your kitchen is the last thing on your list, well it is fair to say you haven’t saved the best for last. There are so many moving parts and so many items that you need to coordinate. If possible, hire a professional general contractor and designer to coordinate everything, but if that isn’t in your budget then you need to be very organized. Here are 10 tips to help you get started. Good luck!
- Start out with a plan. Know what you want your kitchen to look like before you do anything. Go through websites, magazines, etc. and collect all of the design ideas so you can show your contractors your vision.
- Draw out a rough sketch of your vision and document everything that needs to be done. Are you removing walls? Changing flooring? Adding lighting?
- Make a list of all of the trades you need to engage with. The main trades are electrician, plumber, drywaller, painter, flooring expert, carpenter. Get referrals!
- Engage with a kitchen design company to review your space. Whether it’s a DIY kitchen like Ikea or Home Depot or a custom built kitchen, you need the guidance of an expert to know what your options are and make sure everything will fit. A kitchen design company can and will coordinate everything for you, but this will cost you extra.
- Get quotes from carpenters for demolition and rework to be done.
- Get quotes from electricians, plumbers, flooring etc.
- Order your kitchen so you know when your install date will be. Wood or painted cabinets? Granite or quartz counters? Drawers vs. doors? Wall oven? Undercabinet or over cabinet lighting? Backsplash? Hood fan?
- Schedule your demolition and all of the things that need to happen before your kitchen is installed. Drywall, paint, flooring, new lighting etc. to align with your install. (Note: remember the minute you begin demolition, you will be disrupted and worse….you won’t have a sink). It’s tougher than you think to do dishes in the laundry sink. If it’s possible, have a temporary kitchen set up in the basement or at the very least a temporary sink in your existing kitchen – you will say thank you!
- Begin looking for your appliances and accessories because it takes so much time to figure out what you want and get it on site. You need all of the specs so the electrician can wire everything correctly. Dont forget the sink, is it undermount? and of course the faucet, cabinet hardware, lighting, flooring so many choices!!
- Keep a folder of everything so you can refer back to it as well as keep track of what it supposed to happen when.
This is just the high-level synopsis of the requirements and activities that go into a custom kitchen renovation. The stress is high and the bank account takes a beating when you take on this challenge, but when you come out on the other side with the new kitchen that you’ve dreamed of, it is all worth it.