Kitchen remodeling project.

Dreaming of gathering around a spacious, sleek chef’s kitchen with family and friends? Envisioning cooking intricate meals effortlessly in a kitchen tailored to your culinary style? We’ve got the perfect kitchen remodeling checklist for you!

The lure of the perfect kitchen remodel is every homeowner’s dream. But for many, turning those dreams into reality requires careful planning and decision-making at each step. Rather than diving into demolition day, use this comprehensive kitchen remodeling checklist to craft your perfect kitchen space – without breaking the bank. 

Don’t get in over your head with a kitchen remodeling project that snowballs into a budget-busting nightmare. With this kitchen remodeling checklist in hand, you can methodically tackle one task at a time to create a kitchen that looks beautiful and functions beautifully.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist: Step by Step

Step 1: Plan Ahead

Carefully planning out your kitchen remodel upfront will set the stage for an efficient, cost-effective project that delivers your dream.

  • Set Your Budget

The first step of any project is to get honest about what you can realistically afford. 

Get multiple quotes for every aspect, and remember that demolition often uncovers unforeseen issues. Electrical improvements, plumbing revamps, HVAC changes, dumping fees, and structural enhancements also add up. 

Prepare to build in a 10-20% cushion for overages. Once you set your budget, avoid creeping scope at all costs. Splurging on luxury finishes before the walls are insulated or failing to stick to appliance allowances is a recipe for busted budgets.

  • Decide on a Timeline

Map out an expected timeline for the project with reasonable cushions built in. Understand that some phases, like cabinetry fabrication or imported tile deliveries, can take weeks. 

If your family will be displaced during construction, pinpoint move-out and move-in dates accordingly. Identify any wiggle room or plan B’s like short apartment rentals or moving in with family to accommodate delays.

  • Hire Help

Unless you’re highly skilled in multiple trades, hire a general contractor to quarterback your remodel. They will line up electricians, plumbers, and drywall crews and handle all licensing and inspections so you can focus on tiles and bar stool style. 

Architects and interior designers are smart hires for drawings and décor decisions. You can often find everyone you need for any kitchen remodel project by working with a remodeling and design firm with experience in home renovations.

  • Create a Vision for Your Kitchen Remodel

Define a style vision like modern-industrial or traditional charmer and collect inspirational images to guide all aesthetic choices. This is the fun part – where no idea is too wild for the drawing board.

Also, identify must-have functionality like status entertaining zones, dedicated baking centers, or cleanup flexibility for messy arts and crafts. Start a wish list notepad of dream features to reference throughout the process, as this will help you in the days ahead.

Step 2: Layout, Layout, Layout

The floorplan and layout of your kitchen have a huge impact visually and functionally. Before finalizing structural changes, thoughtfully evaluate how you use the space – as this will likely determine what goes where.

  • Evaluate Workflow

Analyze how you circulate from sink to stove, to fridge, to prep areas in your current kitchen. Minimize cross-traffic that leads to collisions with family members. Position the most accessed appliances and cabinet groupings close together in efficient triangles, a technique developed by ergonomic experts to streamline meal prep.

  • Consider Open Concepts

If you live in an older home, determine if you want to knock down walls for sightlines between the kitchen, dining, and living rooms. This opens up spaces beautifully but also comes with challenges like louder ambient noise. And when the kitchen is open to living spaces, you’ll want to be mindful of how your cooking smells may affect the rest of the house.

  • Add Specialty Areas

Think about your dreams for a kitchen office zone, walk-in pantry, built-in banquette breakfast nook, pet feeding station, or landing pad for backpacks, phones, and keys. Figure out natural places to incorporate them into the existing footprint or additions.

  • Incorporate Storage Smartly

Strategize places to tuck lesser-used items like small appliances, overflow pantry goods, platters, and baking tools. Add vertical storage layers through towering cabinetry and display shelving on walls – giving both a place to store and a showcase for your favorite kitchen items.

Step 3: Consider Your Cabinets

The cabinets form the backbone of your kitchen, impacting aesthetics, storage capacity, and usability. Their footprint also often dictates the placement of countertops, appliances, and work triangles.

  • Choose Cabinet Styles

Select door styles that align with your overall vision, like modern, streamlined fronts or ornate glass paneled patterns. Decide between stained wood grains versus solid color lacquers or laminates for ease of maintenance. Look for ways to maximize utility, such as pull-out drawers for easy access and lazy Susans to reach corner spaces.

  • Determine Materials

Durability and water resistance are crucial for kitchen cabinets, leading to popular options like maple, oak, cherry for woods, or thermofoil laminates. Research exterior finishes too, like polyurethane or acrylic resins to prevent staining or chipping.

  • Include Specialty Storage

Think through clever places to incorporate pull-out shelves, spinning “lazy susan” corner organizers, vertical spice racks, tray dividers, appliance garages, and other space-saving solutions tailored to your storage needs.

  • Don’t Overlook Hardware

Pick metal finishes like brushed nickel, oil-rubbed bronze, or matte black for knobs and pulls that align with your style but also withstand constant handling in a busy kitchen. Incorporate soft-closing hinges and drawers for added luxury.

Step 4: What About Your Countertops?

Countertops double as food prep surfaces as well as style statements. They must withstand hot pots, knife chops, spills, and more while still looking pristine. So, what should you look for when choosing your countertops?

  • Research Materials

The leading contenders include granite, marble, quartz, laminate, wood, concrete, stainless steel and ceramic tile. Each comes with its own cost, durability, porosity, stain resistance, and look. 

Granite and marble offer classic elegance but require yearly sealing. Durable quartz provides modern flair, while concrete makes an industrial impact.

  • Measure Precisely

Remember the old adage, “Measure twice, cut once!” When selecting materials, undergo meticulous measurements of your current countertops, including unusual nooks, angles, and cutouts. 

Precision is key for accuracy in both ordering stock slabs sized as close as possible for less waste and guaranteeing a custom fit.

  • Mind the Edges

While you likely envision the top surface, don’t neglect sides and edges, which can be nicely finished, too. Popular treatments include bullnose rounding, ogee-shaped contours, wood trim, or tiling. These provide extra protection from chipping, plus a decorative accent.

  • Don’t Forget Backsplashes

While often an afterthought, the backsplash makes a major design impact. It ranges from basic rectangular tile to handmade accent mosaic patterns or even plate displays. Coordinate materials and hues with countertops and cabinetry for a cohesive look.

Step 5: Pick Your Appliances

Appliances are the workhorses of your kitchen and require careful consideration around performance, dimensions, and aesthetics.

  • Identify Must-Haves

Analyze how you currently use kitchen appliances and which bring you joy or frustration. Make a wish list of dream features like double ovens, wine fridges, steam ovens, or powerful ventilation hoods.

  • Choose Matching Suites

Selecting a suite of appliances in uniform finishes from a single brand creates a built-in, high-end look. You can often package dishwashers, fridges, ranges, and microwaves with cohesive handles and digital displays.

  • Remember Those Measurements

When selecting appliances, have existing cutouts, cabinet dimensions, and surrounding counter depths on hand. Pay special attention to commercial depth and restaurant-grade options, which may require more extensive surrounding cabinet or wall modifications.

  • Incorporate Smart Tech

Today’s latest fridges, ovens, and dishwashers offer integrated Wifi, internal cameras, touchscreens, and voice controls. Determine if you want to splurge on these luxury features for added convenience and innovations.

Step 6: Add Those Finishing Touches

The final details pull your whole kitchen together, add personality, and make the space shine.

  • Select Finishes

Update dated brass fixtures for modern oil-rubbed bronze or matte black metal finishes. Incorporate accent lighting like French door glows or undercabinet task spotlights. Consider switching outdated floors for gleaming hardwood or low-maintenance luxury vinyl planks.

  • Personalize with Wall Décor

Inject personality through framed art prints, painted murals, or inspired saying decals on walls. Continue backsplashes behind stoves or as full accent walls. Hang commonly used utensils and pans from decorative racks or magnetic strips for quick access and display.

  • Style with Window Treatments

Add the finishing touch with Roman shades, casual cafe curtains, or elegant draperies with decorative rods and tassel ties. Make them blackout or solar, depending on your climate and privacy needs.

Pull together these finishing layers to create a kitchen that looks as amazing as it functions – and you’ll be amazed at how the entire space comes to life.

It’s Time to Bring Your Dream Kitchen to Life

Follow this comprehensive kitchen remodeling checklist to create a gorgeous, functional heart of your home within budget – all that remains is your own creativity!

With proper planning, attention to detail, and help from professional kitchen remodeling experts like the team at Irene Designs, your perfect kitchen can become a reality. Our decades of expertise in transforming outdated kitchens into chef-quality showpieces will ensure you get informed recommendations tailored to your unique space.

Discover your dream kitchen’s possibilities today by contacting Irene Designs for an initial walk-through. Our 360 visualization services allow you to fully conceptualize the potential before our skilled team seamlessly handles demolition to installations. Contact us today to start cooking up your ideal heart of the home!

By Published On: February 10th, 2024