So you want to renovate your kitchen – a few things to consider before you start shopping.

1. Motivation: Are you renovating to achieve your dream home? Are you renovating to sell? Are you renovating because of a fire/flood?  What’s your motivation renovate and what is the goal you’re wanting to capture?  Knowing the answer to those questions will help your designer immensely when they begin working with you.

2. Scope of project: People don’t buy cabinets, they buy kitchens. That often includes new flooring, new windows and/or doors, new sink, faucet, countertop, backsplash tile, appliances.  Sometimes the kitchen is attached to a larger renovation, like removing a wall.  Keep all that in mind before you start shopping and help your designer use your investment dollars wisely.

3. Know what you want to spend: I often refer to kitchens as an investment, and it’s true. Kitchen and bathroom renovations typically return 75-100% of investment upon home sale.  However, none of us have unlimited funds to spend, so know what’s comfortable for you to spend, and please share it with your designer up front.  If you don’t know where to start, think of what you would be willing to spend were you car shopping.  That’s a good benchmark before you renovate.

4. Think of your priorities: Would you be willing to forego a few extra storage cabinets in order to afford a quartz countertop? Would you be willing to sacrifice the quartz to afford a commercial range?  Your designer will, of course, do their best to get you everything you want for what you can afford, but realistically that isn’t always possible.  Let them know what you NEED, what you WANT, and what would be a BONUS to include in their designs for you.  You’ll be happier and your designer will be more efficient.

5. Keep a contingency fund: If you plan to spend $45,000, try to keep your purchases and labour to $40,000, and have a $5,000 contingency fund. You never know what your installer might find once he or she starts opening up your walls!

6. Have a plan: Are you staying in your home while the renovation is happening? If so, make sure you have somewhere to cook, somewhere to wash dishes, and somewhere to eat while your renovation is in progress.  Better yet, take your family on vacation while the work is being done.  Your installer will thank you, and your experience will be much less stressful.

Renovating any room in your home can be stressful, but if you prepare well, it can run smoothly.