Are you contemplating a kitchen remodel? Great decision. According to a recent survey by the National Association of Home Builders, kitchens are still one of the most popular rooms to remodel with 78% of NAHB Remodelers performing kitchen remodels during the previous calendar year.
Due to the evolution of our lifestyle, the kitchen is now the center of the home—it’s where we dine, entertain, hang out, watch TV, finish homework, work on our laptops, and more. Since the kitchen is such an integral part of our lives, a kitchen should be well-functioning and designed just right. So, if there is one upgrade you’re going to make to your house this year, let it be your kitchen. Not convinced yet? Here are five compelling reasons to renovate your kitchen today:
Stay on Top of Design Trends
The home design market is filled with new, luxury materials and functional innovations (from an endless variety of beautiful engineered quartz countertops to wood look plank tile that offers greater durability) that will transform your kitchen into your new favorite room in the house. Check out our most popular local kitchen design trends by reading 7 Exciting New Kitchen Design Trends in California.
Technology has made its way into every aspect of our lives, and our kitchens are no exception. To fit your lifestyle and help make your cooking experience easier, appliances are now ‘smart’ and keep you connected. LG's SmartThinQ refrigerator is just one example, which includes a built-in Amazon Alexa, an "InstaView" option that allows you to see what's in your fridge from your smartphone, and a Bluetooth speaker. Smart ovens are also making their way into our lives, enabling chefs to check on the status of their delicious chocolate chip cookies via their smartphone.
Tired of staring at all those wires for your family's devices? Include a built-in charging station drawer. Worried about spreading bacteria when you cook? Install a touchless faucet. There is no end to all of the fantastic ways you can modernize your kitchen into the 21st Century.
Are you an empty nester? Has your family grown? Do you entertain more than you used to, or maybe not as much? Homeowners’ needs change over time. As such, your kitchen may not function as well as it used to. Taking your needs into account and incorporating them into a new, functional layout, will ensure that your kitchen works for you and not the other way around. A 2018 Houzz Kitchen Study reports that, “homeowners are leaning away from a more traditional U-shaped kitchen layout toward an L-shape”. Also, half of the homeowners in the survey reported that they wanted to open the kitchen up into other areas of the home to create a more open, spacious feel.
Perhaps your cookbook collection or plethora of small appliances has outgrown their designated space? Are you tired of bending over and picking up that heavy stand mixer? Dramatically improve the functionality of your kitchen by designing custom cabinetry features into your space. Items to consider include appliance garages, blind corner pullout shelving, and custom built-ins. Or, increase your entertaining options by adding an oversize island with extra seating and additional food prep space.
What functional improvements are on your “must-have” list?
Increased Energy Efficiency
While the kitchen is the place where family gathers to share meals and talk about their day, it’s also the perfect place to begin making some energy-efficient changes to your home. By taking energy consumption into account, you can remodel your kitchen to become not only more comfortable, but also help to lower energy costs.
Start with energy-efficient appliances (i.e., refrigerators, stoves, dishwashers and microwaves). According to EnergyStar.gov, recent improvements in today’s refrigerators have resulted in much less energy use compared to older models. With an Energy Star certified fridge you can maximize your energy and dollar savings without sacrificing the features you want. And, EnergyStar-approved dishwashers are on average 12 percent more energy-efficient and 30 percent more water-efficient than standard models.
Finding ways to use natural light to lessen your reliance on electricity is another way to conserve energy. Consider replacing regular light bulbs with compact fluorescents (CFLs), which generate less heat; and install a low-flow faucet which can reduce water usage by as much as 60%. And, always remember to unplug small appliances when not in use. All these small changes can add up to big savings over the lifetime of your kitchen!
Future Home Value
Whether you’re looking to stay in your home for a few more years or through retirement, remodeling your kitchen is a smart way to invest in your home. An updated kitchen is a significant selling point for most home buyers. In fact, the Remodeling 2018 Cost vs. Value report in the San Jose region cites mid-level kitchen remodels recouped over 105% of the overall expenditures last year! How’s that for maximizing your return on investment? For additional ways to add value to your home read Home Remodeling Projects with the Highest Return on Investment.
A kitchen remodel may seem a bit intimidating and often requires a considerable investment of time and money, but it doesn't have to be! The key to a successful kitchen renovation is doing your due diligence and starting with a thorough design plan. Another important ingredient is choosing an experienced, qualified home remodeler to work with (ideally a design build contractor) who can help you through the design and construction process, from inception through completion.