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Five Kitchen Remodeling Tips

You can expect a bit of stress with any home renovation project, but kitchen remodels have long taken the cake for causing the most headaches. There are many important components (appliances, countertops, plumbing, storage, etc.) to fit together, and that process can get time-consuming — not to mention expensive. 

So how can you ensure your kitchen remodel is as successful and pain-free as possible? Follow our top 10 kitchen remodeling tips. 


Our Top 10 Kitchen Remodeling Tips

Don’t let the logistics of a kitchen remodel project stop you from transforming your space into something you actually love and want to spend time in. If done right, your kitchen remodel will be well worth your investment, as you can count on added beauty, functionality, and resale value. Here are 10 of our best tips to help you get there.

1. Start With Goals & Budget

Planning your goals and budget should be your first step in any renovation project — espeically your kitchen. By determining your goals and allotted money ahead of time, you’ll provide a roadmap for what you aim to accomplish over the course of the project. 

Why do you want to remodel your kitchen? What are your top priorities for the project? What are your other wish-list items? How much are you willing to invest in the project, and what kind of financing will you need to secure beforehand? Ask yourself these questions and ensure you’ve given yourself enough time to think through them thoroughly before proceeding with next steps.

2. Understand How You Use the Space

Take some time to reflect on how your family functions in your kitchen. Think about how much you cook, bake, and entertain in the space. Then think about if there are any pain points you experience while you’re doing any of these things. 

For example, if you’re straining to lift dishes into a wall cabinet, you might note that trying drawers in a base cabinet might work better. Or if you notice that your guests are too cramped during a dinner party, you might need to look into a new floorplan or space-saving options. 

Knowing how you and your family functions in your kitchen will help you what kind of storage you need, how much you need, and where you need it. Here are some trends we’ve found among our clients: 

  • Cooking utensils placed next to the stove
  • Pots and pans in drawers beneath the oven
  • Dishwasher and trash bin flanking the sink area
  • Bakeware and tools in island cabinets


3. Know That Open Concept Isn’t the Only Concept

Most homeowners are fixated on the idea of a wide-open kitchen. But while open-concept kitchens are great for many homes, they aren’t always necessary. 

Some homes already have a fairly open layout and plenty of room to function comfortably in. Others need a bit more space but present ways to obtain that without adding square footage or tearing down walls. Removing cabinets, borrowing space from a connected living area, or even just installing another window or two can make your kitchen feel more roomy.

So don’t get carefree about knocking down walls and changing floorplans right away. Take some time to think about how your family uses the space, and if an open concept is really necessary. This could save you a great deal of time and money during your kitchen remodel.

4. Prepare to Live Without a Kitchen or Move Out

Kitchen remodels are one of the renovation projects where we recommend finding an alternative living arrangement. Living without a kitchen isn’t fun, and ordering takeout every day — believe it or not — can get old very quickly. 

This is a step that many homeowners overlook while planning their kitchen remodel, and then they’re left in a less-than-ideal living situation. Save yourself the stress and plan for where you’ll go ahead of time. 

5. Keep Long-Term Accessibility in Mind

If you plan on staying in your home for years, it’s important to keep long-term accessibility and age-in-place modifications in mind. If you plan on selling your home soon after remodeling, these accessibility features can also be great additions to your home’s value. 

Some accessibility features you may consider including are: 

  • Open-concept floorplan
  • Wide pathways
  • Slightly lower cabinet and countertop height
  • Shallow shelving
  • Drawers and pull-out drawers
  • Open or transparent (glass) cabinetry


6. Minimize Corners

Corners in a kitchen are awkward for a number of reasons. They’re difficult to work at and reach over to access wall cabinets. They can also be your kitchen’s “black holes.” What is placed in a dead corner cabinet is often forgotten. 

Straight countertop runs simplify storage access and functionality. If you do need a corner, Lazy Susan or Lazy Charlie cabinets make efficient use of the space.

7. Purchase Energy-Efficient Appliances

If your kitchen remodel includes adding or upgrading appliances, make your choices wisely. Of course you should consider things like style and performance, but you should also keep a close eye on energy efficiency. 

Energy-efficient kitchen appliances do good for our environment, and they do good for your wallet. Even if the upfront cost of an energy-efficient appliance is higher than other options, your investment will pay off in the long run with lower utility bills every month.

8. Choose Timeless Design Over Trendy Design

The thing about trends is that more often than not, that’s exactly what they are: trends. If you want to get the most longevity out of your kitchen remodel, it’s important to choose designs and finishes that are timeless and truly work with your home.

If you do find yourself pulled toward a particular trend, there are more cost-effective ways to include them. Things like lighting, decorations, paint and chairs are a bit easier and cheaper to replace than things like cabinets, flooring, and countertops. We recommend incorporating “trendy” style choices into those items.


9. Play With Color

White kitchens are all the rage right now, and for good reason. They brighten up a space and can even make it seem bigger, even if nothing else changes. 

However, it’s still important to add touches of personality to your space. There are ways you can play with pops of color that don’t distract from the overall cleanliness or modern flair of your kitchen. You might choose to add pops of color in low-stakes, easy-to-replace items like decorations and chairs, rather than cabinets, countertops, and appliances.

10. Implement Helpful Accessories

Drawer and cabinet accessories like tray dividers, trash pull-outs, and silverware dividers help define and organize your space even more. Although they’re not the first thing anyone will notice when walking into your kitchen, they’re important for keeping all of your tools, utensils, and dishes organized. 

A word of caution: adding too many accessories can limit the flexibility of your kitchen, so make your choices carefully!

Get More Kitchen Remodel Tips From Meadowlark’s Experts

If you’re ready to remodel your kitchen, we’re ready to guide you through the process. Talk to our team at Meadowlark Design+Build. Our design-build experts have years of experience turning cramped, outdated kitchens into beautiful, comfortable spaces homeowners enjoy for years. 

By Katie MacGillivray

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