Kitchen remodeling can be an exciting experience. Such a vital part of the home demands the utmost attention to detail — anything from the room layout, to the appliances, surfaces, colors, and lighting can affect how functional the space becomes.
However, kitchen renovations can be quite expensive. According to our previous article ‘Kitchen Remodel Costs and Tips’, the average Los Angeles kitchen remodel can cost anywhere from $30,000 to $100,000, with most projects running between $40,000 to $70,000. A financial decision like this then requires a lot of planning, taking note of everything from budgets to financing to specific room changes. To help you plan your kitchen remodel, we’ve provided a list of points to note.
Here at GreatBuildz, a free service that connects homeowners in Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura and San Diego Counties with reliable kitchen contractors, we speak to homeowners every day about planning their desired kitchen remodel and budgeting for kitchen remodel costs – here are some ideas & tips to get you started.
1. Set a Budget For Your Kitchen Remodeling Project
It’s important to make a realistic plan for how you want to spend your remodeling funds. To do this, decide which parts of your kitchen you want to work on. Once you’ve listed the changes you want to make, do research on how much each item costs.
Common items include kitchen cabinets ($150 – $400 per linear foot), countertops ($50 – $150 per square foot), and appliances ($2,500 – $50,000). Once you’ve figured out how much kitchen-related items usually cost, think about how much you want to spend all in. A good rule of thumb is to set aside 10-25% of your budget for contingencies.
Finally, determine which changes will take the most priority. Maybe the appliances are working fine, but the layout doesn’t give you enough space when you’re cooking. In this case, you can lower your budget for appliances and instead focus on space planning and efficiency.
2. Find a Suitable Financing Option
If you cannot pay for your kitchen remodel out of pocket, try to look into the different ways you can finance your project.
Personal loans, home equity lines of credit (HELOC), and home equity loans are options you can look into, as listed in this guide for home remodeling loans. Each option has its own pros and cons, so try to weigh out the differences to determine which best suits your situation.
If the renovation isn’t too costly, you can take out a personal loan. Though the interest rates are higher than in other options, they do not require you to put up collateral.
HELOCs and home equity loans, on the other hand, require you to borrow against the value of your home. Interest rates for these kinds of loans are lower, but your lender will have the right to repossess your home should you fail to pay your debt. HELOCs and home equity loans mostly differ in how the funds are distributed. Where HELOCs offer access to revolving credit, home equity loans provide a lump sum of cash.
3. Figure Out Your Timeframe
Understand that remodeling your kitchen will be a time-consuming process, which means that you might be left without an important part of your house for a long time. If you don’t want to spend several months eating out because you lack the space to cook at home, you must figure out an efficient timeframe for your kitchen remodeling project.
Although your entire kitchen remodel could take approximately two months, a significant portion of that time will be required just to manufacture the cabinetry and countertops. You’ll have full use of your kitchen during that time until it’s time to demolish your old kitchen to install new flooring/cabinets/etc. That portion of the project could last 2-4 weeks. Living without a kitchen isn’t easy, so it’s important to find alternative options for food prep and clean up. Some people use a laundry room or garage sink for cleanup. Also, packing your food into boxes and moving those and your fridge and microwave into the garage will allow you to have a ‘mini’ kitchen area.
4. Plan Appliances Carefully
Your appliances are some of the most important elements in your kitchen. They’re often a costly part of kitchen remodeling, so you must choose wisely. Read reviews, warranties, and return policies to determine whether an appliance suits your needs.
Additionally, you should also visit your retailer to assess the product in person. USA Today recommends measuring your kitchen spaces before buying appliances. Would a refrigerator that has all the specifications and features you’re looking for still be useful if it couldn’t fit between your counters?
Aside from the kitchen itself, you will need to measure any entrances leading to your kitchen, such as the garage and adjacent rooms. It would be a major hassle if your delivery people couldn’t get your appliances into and through your house.
5. Select a Good Material for Work Surfaces
Surfaces are another important aspect of your kitchen remodeling design. The materials these surfaces are made of will need to be durable enough to withstand these high temperatures, liquids, and repetitive motions; otherwise, you’ll end up having to spend more money to manage nicks, scratches, mold, and other damages. Granite, limestone, marble, quartz, slate, and soapstone are all common options for kitchen counter surfaces.
6. Consider Layout Functionality
What’s the use of pretty kitchen remodeling if you can’t move through the space efficiently?
When designing a kitchen, it’s important to imagine how you will work in it. A Forbes Advisor article on kitchen layouts recommends paying attention to the “work triangle,” which refers to the path between the stovetop, kitchen sink, and fridge. The gist is that no major obstacles or traffic patterns should obstruct the path from these three points.
Additionally, the distance between each point should measure between four to nine feet, giving the triangle a combined length of 12 to 27 feet. In general, following the kitchen work triangle will allow you to move around your space freely without interruptions to your workflow.
When it comes to kitchen remodeling for your home, you shouldn’t have to go it alone – GreatBuildz can help simplify your renovation experience.
GreatBuildz is a free service that connects homeowners in Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura or San Diego with reliable, thoroughly screened general contractors and provides project support from start to finish. Call now (818.317.3567) to chat with a real person about your next remodel project or visit our website for more information: www.greatbuildz.com