I Want A New Kitchen, But How Do I Begin?

Most families only remodel one or two kitchens in a lifetime, so plan correctly to make it an enjoyable experience. Finding the right products and services for your dream kitchen can be a bit overwhelming. Begin by listing your needs and wants, your likes and dislikes. To make good decisions, you must evaluate your choices.

The next step is to establish a project budget. According to Remodeling Magazine, national averages for a complete kitchen with mid-range selections run from $21,246 for a minor remodel to $56,611 for a major remodel. A general rule of thumb is that the total cost, including cabinets, countertops, wall splash, appliances, floor covering, lighting, electrical updates, and all services is approximately 25% of the value of your home after job completion.

Form follows function. To obtain the greatest value for your budget, you must have a plan. This is where a professional kitchen designer is almost a necessity. Imperial Home Center right here in Lakewood has on staff experienced Kitchen and Bath Designers who can show you how to utilize your limited space and maximize its efficiency. The cost for this service is usually absorbed in the total project and is minimal when you weigh the advantages.

Now comes the fun: it is selection time! With the help of the designer to keep you within budget, and your preliminary design, there are many decisions to be made. Traditional framed or full-access cabinets? Which wood best complements the home--oak, maple, cherry, alder, or hickory? Or perhaps a contemporary laminate cabinet? There are hundreds of combinations of stains, finishes, glazes and colors to make your kitchen one of a kind.

The increase in choices for kitchen countertops in recent years is almost mind boggling. You can now choose products that range anywhere from glass to stone, recycled paper to concrete, exotic hardwoods to stainless steel, and laminate to ceramic tile, all with advantages and drawbacks. Choosing among sinks, faucets, wall splashes, appliances, flooring and lighting requires much research. The input of a professional designer will save many hours of searching magazines and the internet for the information you need to make the right choices.

All building departments insist, for the safety of the family, that the electrical and plumbing in the kitchen be brought up to code. Tamper Proof Ground Fault Interrupter receptacles must be installed in the correct locations on dedicated circuits. The plumbing hook-ups must prevent dirty water from backing into your sink or dishwasher.

With the help of a professional kitchen design firm like Imperial Home Center to administer the project, it should proceed with minimum problems. Happy Remodeling!

Paul Hodge

Bill Hodge, President/Founder, Imperial Home Center, 16000 Madison Avenue, Lakewood.

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Volume 7, Issue 7, Posted 10:26 PM, 04.05.2011