Are you planning a renovation of your kitchen? This can be an exciting step toward turning your existing home into your dream space and the kitchen is the perfect place to start. It’s often said that the kitchen is the heart of the home, so you really want it to reflect what makes you comfortable and happy.
Appliances: In with the New and Out with the Old
In order to truly upgrade your kitchen, you’ll need new appliances. These are the main function of the kitchen, so it’s best to go with high quality and something that is easy to use and easy to clean. You probably already have a good idea of what you don’t want in your new appliances, based on the old ones, but here are a few more things to consider:
Refrigerator: How much space do you need for food? A fridge can take up quite a bit of space, so make sure you’re getting one that is best suited to your needs. If you have plenty of hungry teens in your home, or will in the near future, opt for a larger fridge with plenty of space in the freezer. If it’s just one or two of you, then a smaller option is perfect. The colour of the refrigerator is also very important, as it will affect the overall décor.
Stove: Gas or electric? Stainless steel or enamel? These are just a few of the options you’ll have when it comes to selecting the perfect stove for your new kitchen. There’s also the choice between a cooktop and a full stove with an oven.
Oven: Will you have a separate oven? Many people choose to do a cooktop and then have built in ovens to make the best use of space. Only you can decide if this is what you need. If you don’t do a lot of baking, you probably won’t need a wall mount oven and a regular stove oven will work well for you.
These are the main appliances that you’ll want to change out, but you can certainly add other things. For example, a smoke hood over the stove, a microwave, or anything else you might need in the kitchen are always a great idea.
Cupboards and Counters: Replace or Reuse?
The cupboards and countertops are the real star of any kitchen, giving it the look you want. If you don’t like what you currently have, you may not have to completely gut your kitchen just to get something nice. In fact, many people have great experiences with refinishing their existing cupboards.
If you have painted cupboards, you can strip them down to bare wood and use that, or you can repaint plain or painted cabinets. Adding trim and new hardware can completely change the look, as well. This saves you a lot of trouble and enables you to reuse what is already there.
In the event that you really do need to change out your cupboards, consider if it’s possible to just change the doors. This is the main part that you’ll see and with the change, you’ll usually find that the kitchen has just the look you want.
Countertops are also important and you have a number of options for them. It’s fairly simple to replace your countertop and doing so will give your kitchen a complete makeover. Choose from:
Concrete: If you want something sturdy and long lasting, concrete can be a good option. It can be designed to be rustic looking, or stained and polished to give it a nice design. The material is heat and stain resistant, but it is also very heavy and can be tough to install.
Laminate: This comes in a wide range of styles and colours to fit your décor, but it’s also low cost. You will need to replace it from time to time, but the material is usually fairly durable. However it is not heat resistant, so you need to be careful with hot pans.
Marble: While this material is expensive and looks it, you’ll find that marble countertops actually get marked up and stained fairly easily. However, it is available in a range of colours and is considered a luxury finishing.
Granite: As long as you seal your granite countertops, they will resist water and heat, as well as stains. Since granite is so heavy, you’ll need good support under it. Thinner pieces can crack off or even get chipped if you’re not careful, but overall, it’s a very resilient material.
Tile: Tile looks amazing and the tile itself is easily cleaned. However, the grout is another story and can be tough to clean well enough. Tile is also quite hard and can cause breakage of dishes that are set down too hard.
Stainless Steel: Commercial kitchens use this material for good reason. It withstands heat and extreme scrubbing and can be disinfected easily. It also lasts a very long time. The only downside is the price and that it can be dented easily.
Butcher Block: Wooden countertops are picking up in popularity and can offset the hardness of a tile floor. Butcher block countertops are warm looking and quite cost effective, though they aren’t water resistant. They can be damaged easily, but it’s also much easier to repair or restore any damage.
Once you have your furnishings sorted, you should look to the floor.
Kitchen Flooring: Laminate Flooring or Wood Flooring?
Your kitchen flooring may possibly be the most important part of the entire renovation process. The flooring you select will set the tone for the entire room and it needs to stand up to a lot of wear and tear, as well as changes in temperature and spills. The kitchen can be a messy place and you need to be sure you have a floor that can withstand liquids and potentially staining substances.
There are so many types of kitchen flooring that you may not be able to choose easily. The simplest option is to consider which material you want first and then consider colours. You have a few choices in materials.
Wood flooring: If you want a classically elegant look, you can’t go wrong with wood. It is comfortable and gives a warmth to the room that no other flooring does. The installation of a hardwood floor means your home will be worth considerably more.
Unfortunately, wood floors are easy to scratch and they can be ruined with a little water. It’s particularly important to wax and seal your wood floors on a regular basis to prevent any future issues.
Laminate Flooring: This type of flooring looks like wood or another substance, but it’s considerably more durable. You can find it in stone, bamboo, and wood styles, among others. It can be installed right over your old floor, so you save some time on your renovation. Laminate is also better for wear and tear in general.
However, laminate flooring cannot be sealed or refinished and it will need to be replaced sooner than regular wood floors. If it gets wet, it will warp so it won’t last as long as natural wood.
Tiles: Floor tiles can be ceramic or porcelain and are very easy to clean. Tiles are also pretty affordable and they look amazing. They’ll last for a very long time, unless laid incorrectly. Porcelain tile has the colour throughout the tile, so scratches won’t show if they do happen.
There are some downsides to having a tiled floor. First, it’s very hard, so dishes will usually break if dropped. It can be very slippery if you spill liquid, as well. Grout needs to be resealed periodically and can end up stained if you aren’t careful.
Luxury Vinyl: Vinyl is a great option for anyone looking to enjoy long lasting floors that look great. Vinyl can be installed over a previous vinyl or linoleum floor and is comfortable to stand on. It won’t break your dishes easily and will keep its good looks for years to come.
The downside of vinyl is that it can be easily damaged. It’s a more delicate flooring when it comes to scratches or cuts, though it can hold up to regular foot traffic very well.
Are you in the process of refinishing your kitchen? If you’d like more information on flooring choices and installation, contact Cooper & Williams today for a quote.