I love Lowe’s and I’m proud to say it! Thanks Lowe’s for helping us create beautiful kitchens and for sponsoring this post.
My husband and I have decided to put our home on the market next spring, and I am already combing the local real estate listings in hopeful anticipation of a new home! Real estate experts often say that kitchens and baths sell homes. If this is true, then it is no wonder that many of the homes I am viewing are still on the market. From what I have seen so far from the available listings in our price range, a kitchen remodel will most likely be in our near future.
Kitchen decorating is an extremely personal process and no matter what your budget, every family deserves a beautiful and stylish kitchen. From cabinet color, to countertop material, to appliances, to pulls, finding a wide array of affordable and modern styles for a kitchen remodel can be a daunting process. I have designed, remodeled, and redecorated several kitchens over the course of homeownership and have found Lowe’s Home Improvement to be an excellent resource for my kitchen needs. Today, I want to share with you 7 kitchen remodeling tips start to finish that will help you plan for your kitchen makeover.
Tip 1: Decide what you want to remodel and determine your project budget.
Photo Credit: Lowe’s Culver Maple Dover
Your first task is to determine the scope of your project. How much of your existing kitchen can be saved and how much needs to be replaced? If you are able to work with your existing cabinets, you will save a bundle! Likewise, if you are able to work with the existing plumbing and electrical layout you will cut down on your installation costs and be able to devote more of your budget towards fun upgrades. A helpful formula to determine your maximum kitchen remodel budget is to spend no more than 5%-15% of your total home value. For example, if your home is valued at $300K then your kitchen remodel should stay between $15K-$45K. It is also wise to add an extra 10% safety net to your budget for unexpected costs. If there is one constant in home improvement, it is that unexpected expenses pop-up! Plan ahead by padding your budget in order to avoid being caught unawares.
Tip 2: Gather inspiration and determine your decorating style before talking with the pros.
Photo Credit: Lowe’s
Knowing your decorating style will help you plan more easily for your kitchen remodel and will help you convey your ideas to designers and contractors. Don’t worry if you aren’t able to come up with a one-word label for your kitchen style! More importantly than being able to put a label on your style is being able to communicate to others exactly what kind of kitchen you are hoping to create. The best way to determine what you like is to gather inspiration from decorating blogs, magazines, Pinterest, and photo galleries. I also find it helpful to create a Pinterest board for all of my design projects. When pinning a picture, be sure to list in the comment box exactly what you like about the picture you are pinning. This will clarify the elements you like within the picture and cut down on miscommunication when you share your ideas with kitchen designers and contractors.
Tip 3: Think about your kitchen space and have fun with it before you design it.
Photo Credit: Lowe’s
Choosing cabinets, paint colors, back splashes, countertops, hardware, and lighting are what make my heart go all-a-flutter! However, the most important aspect of any kitchen remodel is the flow, functionality, and layout of the kitchen. It might sound silly, but I highly recommend “playing pretend” in your soon-to-be-remodeled space! When I designed our kitchen and our neighbor’s kitchen, I did some rough space planning using spare 2×4’s on the floor so that I could get a physical sense of flow issues–such as how far away the sink would be from the stove. I had toddlers at the time and imagined what it would be like to have them clamoring at my feet while I carried a boiling pot of spaghetti from stove to sink. This little exercise ruled out some of my initial ideas and helped me determine where appliances needed to be located. Visualizing how you will use your kitchen will help you plan your spatial design. For further help, check out Lowe’s Kitchen Planning Guide which is a great resource and will help you get started.
Tip 4: Carefully select the time of year to begin your remodel.
Photo Credit: Lowe’s Heyword Maple
Kitchen remodeling is messy business! Since most of us do not have the luxury of moving out while our kitchens are being remodeled, it is important to think through how best to survive the inconvenience and mess. Choose a time of year when your schedule is the least hectic and the weather is the most fair. Many find that late spring to early fall works best. Being able to use your grill and eat outdoors during your remodel will help you cut the stress of the mess.
Tip 5: Think high-low decorating when picking out your furnishings.
I created this kitchen design board using all products found online at Lowe’s to give you an idea of what I might create in our next home! Chances are good that I will not be able to afford that drop-dead-gorgeous stove, but I might choose to splurge on the french door refrigerator and quartz countertops. When choosing your furnishings, do not be afraid to take a high-low decorating approach. Choose some high-end kitchen furnishings and mix them with more budget-friendly options. In my inspiration board, all of the furnishings work beautifully together even though the items are from vastly different price-points. My luxe stove looks great with the $50 school-house pendant lights!
Tip 6: Choose your professionals carefully.
Finding a reputable contractor for your remodel is imperative! Lowe’s appliance, cabinet, and countertop experts may be able to offer suggestions for local contractors so be sure to use your local store as a resource. When interviewing potential candidates, ask for referrals, look at credentials, and check up on references. The chemistry you have with each potential contractor should also be noted. Trust and rapport go a long way when someone is in your home for several months! Once you have settled on a contractor, get everything in writing and scrutinize the contract before signing. Good client/contractor communication and a thorough understanding of the contract will help to ensure your customer satisfaction.
Tip 7: Review your remodel, make a punch list, and be sure you are satisfied.
Photo credit: Lowe’s
It might sound obvious, but making sure all of your appliances are in working order, all hardware knobs in place, all cabinets and drawers opening and closing as expected, all outlets working, etc. is a necessary final step in your kitchen remodel. The Lowe’s design teams can bring your vision to reality. If you registered at My Lowes before making your purchases, all of your Lowe’s orders will be accessible to you. So for example, if you need to replace or add a missing kitchen pull, you can easily look back on your purchases to find the product number of the missing hardware. Finally, be sure you have all kitchen appliance warranties in your possession before you part ways with your contractor.
I hope these tips have helped as you begin to plan for your kitchen remodel! If you liked this post, be sure to check out my other kitchen posts in the “related posts” section below.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Lowe’s. All opinions are my own.