Why You Need a Kitchen Remodeling Checklist For Your Next Project [Free Template!]

For many homeowners, a kitchen remodel is one of the most impactful renovation projects there is. It’s an opportunity for a fresh start, a chance to get exactly what one wants in the hub of the house. What’s more, it yields a bevy of benefits including modernization, improved functionality, energy savings, and, ultimately, an increase in home value. 

To keep the project running smoothly and avoid costly missteps and delays, it’s important to create a thorough kitchen remodeling checklist early in the planning stage. Here are some tips to get started. 

Here at GreatBuildz, we speak with clients every day who are planning a kitchen remodel in Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura & San Diego Counties. GreatBuildz is a free service that connects homeowners with reliable, pre-screened remodel contractors, then provides ongoing project support to ensure a stress-free experience.

How to Start Planning a Kitchen Remodel

planning kitchen remodel checklist

Simply put, your kitchen remodeling checklist is a list of all the components necessary for successfully completing your remodel. This includes tangible items like cabinetry and appliances — the things your friends and family will notice the first time they step into the new space — as well as labor-related notes on running new wiring and demolition. 

By identifying your needs and listing them out, you’ll be able to solicit comprehensive, easily comparable kitchen contractor bids that outline the full scope of work to be completed. You’ll also be able to get a clearer picture of how to plan your kitchen remodel budget.  Our printable kitchen remodeling checklist template allows you to cross off items you don’t deem necessary and make notes specific to your project. 

Download Our Kitchen Remodeling Checklist Template

What should I include in my kitchen remodeling checklist?

Checklist for a kitchen remodeling project

Some things to keep in mind as you finalize your kitchen remodeling checklist

  • Layout: Are you keeping the same floor plan or changing the flow of your space? If you plan to add or remove walls and change the locations of your counters, cabinets, and major appliances, you’ll need to plan for demolition, rough construction, plumbing, and wiring. 
  • Cabinetry: If you’re replacing your cabinets, will you be choosing prefab or custom units? If you’re looking to cut costs, you can discuss with your kitchen renovation contractor the possibility of refinishing and staining or painting your existing cabinetry.
  • Countertops: As with cabinets, countertops are available in prefab or custom cuts. Because of its beauty and durability, granite is one of the most popular materials. Other options include laminate, quartz, and marble. 
  • Appliances: If you’re replacing your appliances, you’ll probably be in the market for a new dishwasher, refrigerator, and oven with a range. You might also need a new exhaust hood, and there are all manners of add-ons such as a warming drawer, wine fridge, and espresso maker. Be sure to check that your contractor’s bid includes appliance installation. 
  • Lighting: If you’re not in love with your lighting, now is the time to fix it. Most homeowners opt for a mix of recessed lights in the ceiling with pendant and under-cabinet lighting to illuminate tasks and add ambiance. Keep in mind that new kitchen lighting often means new wiring.
  • Fixtures and finishes: This tends to be a catch-all category for everything from flooring to sinks and faucets to cabinet knobs and other hardware. You have plenty of options for each of these items, and your contractor can provide input on which are the most durable and which provide the greatest cost savings. 
  • Plumbing: If you’re moving or replacing your kitchen sink or adding a second one to your setup, you’ll need to account for new plumbing. Popular add-ons in this category include garbage disposals and pot fillers, which allow you to run water directly into a soup pot sitting on the stove.
  • Utilities: Even smaller projects might involve utility updates like new electrical outlets, electrical circuits, and HVAC registers.
  • Painting and miscellaneous: Toward the end of the renovation, your contractor’s team will tackle final tasks like painting, touch-ups, and punch list repairs.

Related: 6 Things to Know Before Your Kitchen Remodeling Project

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist

Click the graphic below for a detailed list of what aspects go into a kitchen remodel!

What are the costs, processes, and timing to complete a kitchen remodel?

kitchen remodeling checklist modern kitchen

In Los Angeles, the average kitchen remodel costs between $50,000 and $70,000. That said, we’ve seen budget renovations completed for as little as $35,000 and high-end, no-expenses-spared projects for upwards of $100,000. Your costs will vary depending on your location, the size and scope of the project, and your choice of materials. 

Once you finalize your kitchen remodeling checklist, you’ll want to work with an architect or designer to draw up plans for your renovation. This professional will then submit them to your city building department for plan check to ensure they’re compliant with all applicable building codes. During this approval period — which usually lasts between two weeks and a few months depending on the backlog — you can start sharing your plans with kitchen renovation contractors and asking for bids.

When comparing bids, it’s important to watch not only the bottom line but the totality of what the contractor includes. Some might quote a significantly lower price but leave you responsible to cover costs covered by other contractors. That’s why setting expectations via an itemized kitchen renovation checklist is so important — it makes it easier to ascertain exactly what you’re getting. 

Once the work begins, it can take between three to four weeks for a simple, mostly cosmetic kitchen renovation and two to three months for a total overhaul to be completed. 

Related: Kitchen Remodel Costs & Tips 2023

How to find the best kitchen remodel contractor for your project

kitchen remodeling checklist contractor

At GreatBuildz, we’ve streamlined the search process by building a robust network of Southern California’s best general contractors. Whether you’re renovating in Orange County, Ventura County, or elsewhere in the Los Angeles area, we’ll connect you with the right local experts to get the job done.

Here’s how it works: Give us a call and tell us about your project, your budget, and your timeline. Our concierge team will get right to work matching you with three pre-screened professionals. We’ve already interviewed them in person, verified licensing and insurance, and checked in with their references. We make this service free to all homeowners. All you have to do is reach out to see previous projects and ask them to submit bids. 

Not sure what goes into a kitchen remodeling checklist? Let GreatBuildz help streamline your kitchen renovation experience—we’ll connect you with screened and dependable kitchen remodel contractors in Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura, and San Diego. We’ll also give you project support so you can turn your inspiration into reality.


Call now (818.317.3567) to chat with a real person about your next renovation project or visit our website for more information: www.greatbuildz.com

Hi, we're Paul and Jon - Co-Founders of GreatBuildz. We believe everyone deserves to find a great contractor, have a stress-free renovation, and enjoy their beautiful new space. There are so many contractors out there and it's often hard to tell the good from the bad... until it's too late. We started our company to help simplify your contractor search and help you have a stress-free renovation experience. We're always available to help, no matter where you are in the process. Click here to learn more about our story.

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