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  • John Green

10 Common mistakes in Kitchen Remodeling

Kitchens will arguably always be one of the most popular rooms in a home to remodel and can often be one of the most expensive rooms to remodel. With frequent changes in design and style trends its easy to get swept up in colors, appliances and materials, but when tackling a kitchen remodel, it is extremely important to put function first to ensure you are happy with the results. A kitchen remodel – especially one that prioritized function – can also prove to be a great investment, boosting your homes overall value.

Here at RJE Home, we work with many clients who are interested in a kitchen remodel. Some come to us out of the sheer desire to update or change their kitchen design and/or layout while other clients come to us due to an insurance claim, like a kitchen fire. In both situations we try to provide the best direction we can to ensure the finished product is not only beautiful but is highly functioning. That said, we’ve seen a lot of kitchens over the years, and wanted to provide you with things you can do to avoid making some common kitchen remodeling mistakes:

Determine your budget

Kitchen remodels can come with a large price difference depending on the materials selected, size of the space, the extent of layout changes, and even the number of change orders made. Having a budget in mind when you start the project, or even when receiving bids from contractors for the project will help ensure you don’t spend more money than you have, or more money than you want to spend.

Kitchen Pantry

Plan for storage

Take a look at the space you currently have, as well as the items you have for the space and ask yourself: Does everything have a home? If not (and even if so) you may want to consider ensuring the layout accommodates additional storage for your favorite kitchen appliances, glassware and more. Realistically, you can never have too much storage, so be sure to maximize every inch and don’t skimp when designing the space. Another thing to consider is where you plan to locate certain items. For example, it’s safe to assume you will want your pots and pans close to the stove for easy access while cooking, so make sure the room is there for them.

Plan for adequate counter space

If your kitchen is on the smaller side, make sure you are planning for enough countertop space for food prep and for any countertop appliances or items you may have. While you might be leaning towards a larger range with less countertop space, if it takes up too much of your countertop space it might not be the best option. Additionally, if your space allows for it, you may want to consider adding a kitchen island.

Consider trash storage

Most people are uninterested in having an external garbage can for vanity reasons. Consider dedicating a cabinet (likely near your kitchen sink) to conceal your garbage can and recycling bin. This will help provide a clean look for the kitchen while still creating a space to throw away trash.

Kitchen Island

Be reasonable with island size and placement

When planning the layout, many people make islands that are too big or too small for the space. Talk to your contractor to ensure the proper placement and size of the island. Additionally, if you have a smaller kitchen space, a small peninsula might work better than an island.

Pick your appliances early

If you’re planning a new layout, or planning for new appliances, make sure to decide on the appliances you want early in the process, this way they will fit appropriately in the kitchen. It is also wise to ensure you have enough space to open and stand in front of the appliance without you bumping into it, and without it bumping into a cabinet or wall. Also, consider the placement of appliances and key features, such as the sink, so the kitchen can accommodate two cooks.

Kitchen Cabinets

Choose quality cabinetry

Kitchen cabinets are often one of the most expensive aspects of a kitchen remodel. While some homeowners will look for less expensive cabinets to compensate the cost, quality is in fact the most important thing to look for – even ahead of price. Kitchen cabinets needs to withstand daily use and often we find that inexpensive cabinets show signs of wear and tear earlier than their better-quality counterparts, affecting the overall appearance of your kitchen in the long run.

Kitchen Backsplash

Consider a backsplash

Some people think that a backsplash provides a decorative element in the kitchen, and therefore isn’t necessary. And yes, while it does indeed provide style and decoration, it also protects the walls of your kitchen from water, steam, grease and other food items. Because of this, it is important to look for a more durable materials that can be easily wiped and cleaned in case of a food spill.

Choose materials that fit your lifestyle

This is important. While some people will create a kitchen based on looks, it is very important to consider your lifestyle as some materials are more high maintenance than others. For example, if you have young children, a marble countertop – which requires careful sealing and protection – may not be your best bet. Instead, you might want to consider a quartz countertop for its beauty and durability.

Don’t be indecisive

Changes in the middle of a project – whether they be to the design or materials – can lead to delays, unexpected and additional expenses, and frustration for all parties involved. Save yourself from the trouble of making a change order by ensuring you have thoroughly thought out every option before materials are ordered. Ensuring you are satisfied with the design plans and chosen materials will make for a much smoother – and quicker – process.


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