When planning a kitchen remodel, you probably have lots of ideas and dreams you want to include. But before you get out the sledgehammer or talk with any contractors, it's important that you take some time to plan your new layout to make it as useful and efficient as you need. Here are three steps for any style and size of kitchen.
Know Your Needs. It's easy to get distracted by all the products and materials available for remodeling these days. Combined with a constant barrage of other people's renovation ideas on television, on the Internet, and in magazines, this can lead to your adding or avoiding things based on someone else's desires. Instead, answer questions like these:
- How many people usually work in the kitchen?
- How formal and how large is your entertaining?
- Who hangs out in the kitchen, and why do they do so?
- If you can get only one luxury, what would it be?
- How long do you plan on living in the home?
Answers to these and other questions will help you decide whether you should put your money into chef-grade appliances or low-maintenance features. This will help you determine how many work zones to create and whether to add places for the kids to do their homework. Knowing what you really need and want before you talk with contractors will help make the process run smoother and be less expensive.
Plan Triangles. The kitchen "work triangle" consists of the sink, stove, and refrigerator. Each kitchen should have one main triangle that's unobstructed and relatively small. You can add an island to a large kitchen in order to reduce the size of your work triangle. In a big kitchen or one that regularly has more than one cook at a time, consider designing other triangles using places like a prep sink, a convection oven, or a prep counter.
Create Zones. Work zones, like work triangles, make the kitchen more functional and efficient. Once the basic triangle is in mind, look for ways to design zones (or stations) for different tasks—such as a coffee station, food prep station, homework station, snack station, or baking station. What types of stations you need in your own kitchen will be informed as you answer the questions above. Your contractor can help work out a layout that makes the best use of a zone-based layout.
Whatever the size or scope of your remodel project, taking the time to decide what you really need and how using triangles and zones can help you get there will help ensure that you end up with the kitchen of your dreams.
Once you've done your planning, talk to a contractor such as Venters' Construction Inc to get started.