Nothing is more exciting than seeing a beautiful, efficient new kitchen rise out of the ashes of one that has seen better days. No more stained and peeling tiles, dark work stations, or outmoded cabinets. Renovating your kitchen in Ottawa does more than just raise the quality of your life while you use it – it, more than any other renovation, raises the resale value of your home.
Some sources estimate an ROI (Return on Investment) of up to 200% for a complete remodel. But, even a small improvement helps raise your value. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your renovation experience and developing your renovation plan.
Part 1 covers the big picture of planning. Part 2 looks at specific elements you might want to focus on.
Look at a lot of different sources to collect ideas: magazines, home decorating websites, store and manufacturers websites, the kitchens of friends and relatives. Now is the time to explore anything that strikes your fancy. Imagine as wildly as you like and see what creative things others have done. After all, you don’t have to follow through, and who knows what unique ideas they will spark. Make a file of ideas, costs, and product reviews, either hard copy or via your computer or both. Keep lists. Try to get at least a general idea of styles and costs. If overwhelmed, don’t worry, renovation professionals can help you narrow it down, but it helps to really look around first.
Know what the bottom line of your budget is. Then think about what things are most important to you and the current condition of your kitchen. This will help you decide where to splurge and where you can cut costs. As time goes by, consider finding a budget buy for every splurge in order to economize.
What products and designs truly fit your lifestyle? Do you have children and/or pets? Then you will want more durable finishes that are easy to clean, such as laminate on floors, to help deal with heavy traffic. Do you, or will you, have hungry teens? Then, this may not be the time to downsize your refrigerator. Are you a serious cook? Then, sufficient work surfaces and lighting are key. Do you often entertain formally at home for work? Then, higher end products may be what you want, particularly if you are able to deduct it as a business expense.
While some upgrades can be done by the handy homeowner (e.g., changing light fixtures, painting walls, installing sink hardware), others really benefit from the involvement of professional contractors. A full renovation certainly benefits from bringing in a professional renovation contractor. Changes in room layout, plumbing, electrical work, for example, all benefit from a professional’s expertise. As we discussed in our previous blogs on basement repair and renovations, you will want your work to be up to safety codes and there may be building permits to navigate.
A professional contractor can help with that. Many contractors have interior decorators or designers on staff, or can bring in people they work with on a regular basis. As well, the work will have that polished look that will increase your ROI further. And, the experienced home renovation professional can help you develop your renovation plan.
You don’t have to do a complete renovation. You can work in stages (all flooring this year, countertops next year) as your time and money allow. However, doing it all at once means that allowances can be made so that all parts fit together most easily. For example, you might want to adjust cabinetry to fit certain sizes of appliances, or get new countertops cut to fit a new kind of sink.
Well, that’s it for Part 1. Next time we’ll look at individual elements in more detail. Happy Renovating!
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