Planning a dream kitchen is no longer an issue nowadays, there are several avenues which home makers like you and me can avail of. A kitchen designer is able to assist you in planning as well as budgeting for your kitchen. Apart from helping you recognize the importance of labor and material costs and introduce you to efficient suppliers who can provide you everything you will ever need during the process of renovation. In short designers are capable enough to make your dreams come true. Having said that, everybody does need the whole nine yards of service or cannot afford to pay for it.
Talking of services, even the indispensable of these can cost you anything from a hundred to several thousands of dollars depending on the expertise or popularity of the designer. If you want decide to up the ante on designer services, be prepared to shell out more.
Things to Know
Begin with a clear idea of all the services that you will require to execute your plans. Designers should be approached when all has been set and you are prepared to spend the requisite amount to engage their labor. Designers can assist you with the inception of design to its implementation, taking care of all the details in betwixt. But, you must be aware of the expenses.
For instance, a 200 square feet kitchen can cost you as much as 100,000 USD with avant-garde professionals or 20,000 USD with lower rung designers. This is precisely the reason why we suggest you to take everything into consideration before signing the deal with a designer, this will not only help you foresee the expenses but also the quality of work can be determined.
For those of you who do not mind the expenses you can in fact employ more than one designer to beautify your kitchen or get more than one scheme from a single designer. Never limit your chances to just one choice and keep your mind open to all possible options. A kitchen expert can transform your unattractive kitchen into something unexpectedly beautiful.
Most of the times we recommend our clients to prioritize counter tops and cabinets while restructuring kitchens or building a new one. However, if you had counter tops at the bottom of your priority list, then there is nothing to worry about. There are a few things that we would like to mention, which we think will make the process of adding a new counter top much easier.
Counter tops generally require an experienced contractor to be set in place. You will get the most out of a contractor’s service by cooperating and coordinating with his schemes and designs. Provide your contractor a comprehensive bureau of the measurements and ask for an estimate. Before you seek professional advice make sure that you have correctly recorded all the dimensions from one corner to the other, inclusive of the attachments. Do not undermine the importance of meticulous measurements, but this guide should help you with the measurements.
How to accurately measure counter tops
The least error prone method of measuring kitchens is using graph papers or charting software. The basic equipments that you can keep handy while charting your kitchen are measuring tapes and pencils. Do not miss out sinks, appliances or any other segments which may have an impact on the overall dimensions of the work space, deduct the total of these obstructions from the end-to-end area of the kitchen.
Do not forget to take into account the backsplash and edges of the counter top. Be warned that failing to do so properly will incur extra cost. To accurately measure the right-angled edges, start from the meeting point of each surface until the walls and add them all together. To ensure that you have not miscalculated, measure everything twice. Once every thing has been accounted for, seek the help of a home improvement store representative to estimate the total costs inclusive of materials and labor charge.
We do believe that most of you who are planning for a new kitchen or thinking about restructuring the old one have a paint job planned as well. If you are not one among them, you need to seriously reconsider painting your kitchen for the obvious advantages of it. The Internet will provide you an easy way to know lots of options regarding this, magazines and home stores are good sources to explore the colors and design schemes.
Kitchens are more than cooking places; this is where most of us spend our time with our dear ones. Consider the fact that a correct color palette can change the ambiance of your kitchen as well as light up your mood. When done with care, a simple coloring can change the way you cook, clean and interact with your family in the kitchen. You can use the National Kitchen & Bathroom Association database to learn more about the exciting themes and colors that complement each other. Take for instance, you love a Southwestern house, you can recreate the magic by painting the kitchen in earthy tones.
More about Color Palettes and Remodeling
If you want professional help with your colors, hire a color consultant, these are people who are well versed with the various aspects of color and they can help you identify the color which suits your personality and emotional quotient. It is not necessary for your kitchen to be a continuation of your house. It can set apart from the rest of your house with a simple glass door.
For example, if your house is set to a traditional design scheme, you may decide to do something unique with your kitchen. For that you will need to know what alternatives you have. Your color consultant will be better poised to help you out with these, but let us talk a little about the popular color themes that we have seen in American houses.
Yellow is known to make the kitchen bright, so is white. These colors have a cheering effect on you. Then there is black, which although is considered unfit by some, can actually add a look of sophisticated charm. Green has the potential to calm nerves while orange is good in bringing out the contrast between your cabinets and appliances in the kitchen. There are lots of others which we suggest you to discover with a little help from your color consultant.
Before hiring a good contractor, you need to do your homework well. The primary difference between a messed up remodeling job and a perfect finish is careful planning. Before you set off, you should consider several contractors. Find for yourself if they fit the bill and get them to agree on your plans. Contractors come aplenty nowadays, but the good ones are hard to find, so do not give up hope.
Bob Villa is a reputed name in the field of Kitchen Cabinets and they have a few interesting but efficient guidelines which we believe will help you find the right answer to your needs. Avoid those contractors who solicit their service door-to-door. Some of these may haste you to start the job immediately and ask for a large down payment. If your contractor does any one of these, show him to door without wasting a second! Reputed contractors have licenses or permits to do such jobs, if you come across someone who does not have a permit or insists on you to pay for the license, and then you start looking somewhere else.
Points to remember while selecting a cabinet maker
It is recommended by The Council of Better Business Bureaus to have a proper evaluation of your needs before hiring a contractor, do some research to get a basic idea of what the costs might be. This will help you in budgeting for the labor and material costs. Always ask for a list of references.
It is quite helpful to visit a few references who have been a client of your contractor in the past. Arrange for such meetings and make sure to ask all the relevant questions regarding their experience, the overall costs and the time frame in which the job was completed.
Never forget to ask for insurance papers from your contractor, sometimes unintentional damage or accident may happen and you will need insurance in place to pay for it, make sure that the contractors are ready to cover such expenses before hiring them
Free standing furniture, more noticeably the kitchen cabinets made in the European cast is back again and this time it is back with a bang! Apart from the minimalistic look, which has become quite famous lately, the European style is also making its mark significantly. Detached accessories, farmhouse cabinets as well as free standing cabinets are become quite popular among the American population; this has been confirmed by the The National Association of Realtors. The reason behind this is the extra space that these are known to create.
If you are wondering what makes these European kitchen furniture so popular is their adaptability to the habits of the Europeans. People in the Europe have been relocating since ages and they needed something which could keep up with their proclivities. Free standing cabinets make the job of changing abodes easy and hassle free. These cabinets do not compromise on the storage area and they are perfect to show off heirloom and traditional kitchen ware. If you have an enviable collection of crystal dishes which you have collected over the years, then you will appreciate the aptness of these cabinets in displaying stuff.
The credit goes to the English for masterminding and perfecting the free standing furniture over the years. The Hardwood Manufacturers Association, which is an authority on matters related to kitchen furniture, is all praise for the craftsmanship of the English. They recommend buying one free standing cabinet at a time to avoid the problems of cluttering. Since these having rollers attached to their feet, free standing cabinets are quite easy to move around and organize.
You might be advised to buy these at antique furniture but that is overkill, you can always find gorgeous English kitchen cabinets at almost any cabinet supplier nowadays. You can find the perfect match for existing ensemble in home improvement stores in varieties of style such as Shaker, Craftsman or Mission. Consider buying cabinets which can be wheeled out of sight when not in use.
Energy efficient gadgets are the latest trend in kitchen remodelling nowadays. If you are planning to redesign your kitchen, do not miss to include these in your plans. Get rid of your dinosaur-age appliances and adorn your new counter top with the cutting edge technology which has become easily accessible and quite affordable too, not to mention your energy bills will be substantially reduced. For example you can buy an energy-efficient refrigerator or a dishwasher to go with your latest counter top.
The latest Kitchen and Bath Show and Conference has elucidated the fact that energy efficiency and design are equally decisive in buying an appliance. The priorities of the general American household have changed and now, the spot light on efficiency as well as killer looks. Everybody is looking for dishwashers, fridges and cook tops which are power and space efficient.
How to find the right products
The American Council for Energy-Efficient and Economy has listed a number of ways of finding the best product which not only conserves electricity but also water. Cook tops, refrigerators, dishwashers are all within the purview of the aforesaid Council and you should follow their guidelines while buying. Your aim should be to purchase appliances which help you realize your goals of long term energy saving.
Energy Star is an international rating system which benchmarks gadgets based on their electricity consumption. According to The US Department of Energy, you can save up to USD 75 on your energy bills annually. Newer electronics can save as much as half of the power that cannot be imagined with traditional equipments. There is no reason why you should not invest in these for your remodelling assignment.
It is wise to put your money into things that will not only raise the overall value of the house, but also save you all the money until you decide to sell the house. The consciousness regarding such matters has been fuelled by the Federal Trade Commission. It has advisories in place to help you consider the costs of initiation, maintenance and operation of home electronics. We do advise you to pay attention to such matters which seem like trifles on the surface but are potent enough to make a huge impact in the long run.
The recent downturn in global economy has persuaded many Americans to think that selling the house is a wise decision. Though we are not economists, neither will we pretend to be, we think that this opportunity can be taken to redesign our houses, more importantly our kitchens in such a manner that buyers feel like paying a handsome price if we ever have to put the house up for sale.
We believe, an effective way to enhance the looks and functionality of the kitchen is to buy new cabinets or renovate the old ones. If your kitchen cabinets are good enough to serve you longer, then a simple refinishing job will do the trick. However, for those of you who have a dilapidated and worn out cabinetry, you may want to read what we have to say about it.
Never shy away from buying new kitchen cabinets, you will find quite a handful of appealing options that are well within your financial prowess. Have a look at some of the affluent kitchen and home magazines to get a good idea about the latest trends and what you can add to your kitchen décor. But before you proceed, update your knowledge regarding the types of cabinets that are available.
You can order a fully assembled kitchen cabinet or prefer the stock versions. These are available in a wide range of prices and shapes. Pre-assembled and ready-to-assemble (RTA) cabinets are good options which will save you some money and give you all the functionality. Bob Villa is a good place to start looking; you can also rake through the Internet and find some interesting cabinets for your kitchen.
The American standard for cabinets is 34 ½ inches tall, 24 inches in depth and the edges are ¾ of an inch thick. These are available in semi customized versions and the cabinet manufacturers will let you have your wish if you want to add extra accessories. If you want some suggestion regarding the measurement of your kitchen cabinets, walk into Home Depot and you will have all the information you want.
It is preferable to let professionals fit everything in place. Ask for a deadline regarding the completion of your order, normally it takes somewhere between a month and three to get the cabinets ready to install.
Do not let the small size of your kitchen tie you down. Let your imagination run free and you will discover that your small kitchen can indeed give you more joy than bigger kitchens in big houses. The National Kitchen and Bathroom Association regard a kitchen below the 150 square feet mark to be small. However, that should not have any impact on the way you decide to beautify your kitchen. There are hordes of options with counter tops, shelves, appliances and other things of superficial embellishment such as paints, tiles, lights to name a few.
A sure shot way of making a small kitchen look larger than reality is to let a lot of natural light flow in. during the dark hours artificial lighting should be adequate to shine up the tiny place to make it look spacious. A glossy layer of bright paint can also have a lot towards this end. If you choose to buy wider counter tops, ensure that you have placed the lights switches wisely within reach so that you do not have to twist and turn or crouch to flip the switches on or off. Our advice regarding this is to place the light control along with all the other electrical controls somewhere overhead, within your reach.
Taking Care of Sinks, Storage and Space
We will start with the storage space issue. While selecting cabinets, always make sure that you have enough space to store items of regular use within your arm’s distance as well as stash away the rarely used utensils on the top where it will not come in the way of your regular activities.
Kitchen sink are an integral part of the kitchen ensemble, you will need these no matter what the size of your kitchen is. Since you have to make do with a small area, find a sink that is small and has at least two faucets to take care of all you washing needs. However, if you think that a larger sink can be comfortably placed get one of those that will relieve you from the pangs of cramped space.
As far optimizing space is concerned, we think that a combined kitchen cum dining area will solve the problems of a small house quite a lot. In case you have a separate serving area and cooking area, you join them together by creating a pass-through between the two. However, that is entirely upon you to decide.
We hope these tips will redefine your kitchen and make your life lot easier even with a small kitchen.
If you are looking to get the most out of your investment in the kitchen cabinets, then you are not alone. Most of us need the maximum from the money that we have put into the redesigning or remodelling of cabinets. One of the easiest and economical ways of maximizing returns is by painting the cabinets with a fresh coat of paint or buying a set of new hardware. You can also find something worthwhile from the huge collection of refacing or finishing alternatives that are available easily. It is quite natural to want some unconventional substitute to traditional paints; green paints are a great alternative which can be considered.
Authoritative sources such as Better Homes and Gardens have recently discovered that homeowners want much more than simple storage solutions for their homes; they need style, functionality and displaying capabilities. Antique wares such as china and glassware need display occasionally while sometimes they need to be stashed out of view. Modern cabinets have to be versatile enough to handle both of these with aplomb, while looking trendy and stylish in the process.
How to choose the right paint and design for your kitchen cabinets
The National Kitchen and Bathroom Association suggest homeowners to be as meticulous in choosing cabinets paints as they are while choosing the material of the cabinet. This is one of the primary areas of concern, hence the importance should be proportionate to the need of these, second comes the design options and paints or the hardware. Another point that you might want to consider while selecting the cabinets is the spacing arrangement, it has to tally well with your needs.
Let us now talk a little about the paint options that you have at your disposal. There are the traditional ones that are known to exhale harmful fumes that are known to harm people, most significantly children. Then there are the options which have a low VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) and do not use harmful adhesive such as formaldehyde. These are much better and are popularly known as the green alternatives to your regular paints. You can easily find these if you ask your local hardware; these are equally effective in terms of sealing and protective features.