A home’s kitchen is the most popular and heavily used room in a house, along with normally being at or near the top of a list for improvement. The secrets of remodeling a kitchen include selecting the right design that fits the homeowner’s tastes and style of living. This involves making the kitchen inviting and comfortable for all who enter.
The secrets of remodeling also include selecting a good quality design. The guide to selecting a quality design is to select products and materials that improve some or all features of a kitchen’s function. For this reason serious consideration must be focused on function and tastes before selecting a specific style. There are hundreds of styles to select from including the following variations as a guide:
- Traditional – this kitchen features warm woods, raised panel details, and brass. It presents an old fashioned, warm feeling of come and visit for awhile.
- Contemporary – this kitchen style features a sleek and clean design, along with having personalized natural wood tones or high-contrast materials.
- European – this kitchen features clean, linear designs, and ergonomically created with the latest in European trends that do not dominate surrounding rooms.
- Country – this style features a close to nature and simple look with solid oak cabinets, along with ceramic or wood handles.
Kitchen Cabinets: A New Look Through Refacing or Replacing
The kitchen cabinets set the tone for the whole room. These cabinets consume the largest proportion of the room and the color must tie the whole room together. The secret here is to select a neutral color, because it is cheaper and easier to repaint walls than replacing the cabinets later.
- Refacing – is often easier, faster, and typically 50 percent cheaper than replacing the cabinets. Refacing involves replacing or painting the doors and drawer fronts, along with replacing handles. Replacing the doors is normally accomplished using plastic laminate, solid, or glass doors. Drawer fronts are normally replaced with plastic laminate or solid wood.
- Replacing – is the most expensive option and typically chosen when enlarging or relocating appliances. For a complete kitchen remodel with new cabinets, the general rule of thumb is to allocate 40 percent of the new kitchen’s budget for cabinets.
Another secret here is to utilize every square inch of cabinets by selecting different sizes and shapes to fit pots, pans, dishes, and appliances to eliminate clutter.
Counter Tops: Pros and Cons
There are a lot of options for counter tops in a kitchen, which include natural materials and plastic laminates. The following secrets are the pros and cons for each option:
- Granite – is a natural material that is beautiful, hard, and durable. It withstands heat, along with being stain and scratch resistant. The only con is the need to routinely apply a stone sealant to seal the pores in the granite.
- Marble – is another natural material that has a glossy, elegant finish. However, the cons are that marble is easily scratched or broken. It also requires routine application of a sealant. Another important con is that marble is easily stained by acids from coffee, citrus juices, and wine.
- Tile – is another natural material made from limestone, marble, quartz, and porcelain providing a durable and heat resistant surface. The cons are that it is easily scratched and grout lines often develop hairline cracks that allow water to seep through to the backing and wood support. Tile requires a lot grout maintenance and sealant to control scratches.
- Laminate – this plastic material is easier to apply than natural materials. Laminate is more resistant to scratches and stains, along with requiring little maintenance. The con is that edges tend to chip and edges break off with heavy use.
Flooring: Style and Durability
The secret for kitchen flooring is that it must be durable along with complimenting the style of cabinetry, appliances, and counter tops. Kitchen floors are typically high traffic areas and a type must be selected that wears well. Electrical floor heating systems are good investments for homes in colder climates. There are many types of flooring, including:
- Laminate – is made from a synthetic material and can be made to look like whatever type of flooring a person wants. The material has several layers, along with a tough plastic top layer making it durable.
- Slate – is made from non-porous rock material and does not stain. There many colors with the most popular being black, gray, rust, greens and maroons. Slate is also slip resistant and durable.
- Hardwood – lasts a lifetime and goes with most kitchen styles, along with being durable. These floors can be installed as strips, planks or parquet squares with many options of colors and grain.
- Vinyl – is quite common and relatively easy to install, along with being durable and easy to maintain.
What everyone needs to know about remodeling a kitchen is to plan and research. The secret to success in kitchen remodeling is to ensure the renovation fits the owner’s life style and tastes. Another consideration is the quality to ensure the best return on investment if selling the home is in the future.