Have you finally reached the point where your existing kitchen just doesn't blend with your current lifestyle or it simply doesn't have the efficiency that you require? Are you beginning to formulate your kitchen remodel ideas? Your appliances have become personified with all their special inhibiting attributes they contribute toward your life. Don't forget that their power efficiency is definitely inferior to the norm of today and that your old appliances are wasting energy that you pay for monthly in the form of your electric bill. Perhaps your gas stove's burners aren't as efficient as they once were adding an addition of carbon monoxide to the air you breathe within your home's confinement. Maybe your stove's hood vent, which hasn't worked in quite some time, needs to be upgraded with a more efficient and certainly a more quiet unit. How about the cabinet drawers that that have come apart or no longer freely run on their guides. And don't forget about the missing cabinet bottom under the sink because of an accidental plumbing leak that occurred months ago or the old original cabinet doors that no longer shut or perhaps have hinge problems. Many problems or a combination of certain defects can cause you to reach that threshold and begin to get serious about a kitchen or bathroom upgrade.
To begin with, kitchen upgrades and bathroom remodels return the most money at resale on the initial investment of the remodeling project. National averages show that kitchen remodels recoup around 70% of the costs of the upgrade at the time of resale of the home. However, your kitchen remodeling costs should never exceed 15% of the total value of your home. Here is where you need to get your thinking cap on and plan for an affordable budget that is within your means. Your material choices are very important and if you need to stay mid-level to fit the budget then do so. The labor involved for the project will be around 1.6 times the cost of the materials used. The total budget should allow $100 per square foot for your kitchen upgrade project.
For an average size kitchen of between 200-300 square feet you can budget $25,000 for your kitchen upgrade. There are no DIY kitchen remodeling projects. Once the demolition is accomplished the inexperienced homeowner should consider his part in the remodel to be complete. It's time to get the building professionals involved to make sure that the resulting kitchen upgrade functions correctly. The correct electrical wiring with the new outlets and appliance rough ins should be installed within the kitchen's frame work. Dedicated circuits per the national electrical code should be wired by a qualified electrician. This will insure that two appliances can be running simultaneously without tripping any circuit breakers. The electrician will also install the needed GFI circuits that keep you safe around any wet areas. It's also a great time to install all the upgraded lighting fixtures with the new switching they require. Skimping on the electrical budget can cause many problems including an electrical fire.
Plumbing upgrades need to be addressed and the use of a master plumber will make sure that everything functions correctly. Moving a sink over a small amount can add an additional $2,500 to your project's hard costs as it affects both the plumbing and the floor. The plumber can be sure that you have adequate water volume for any additional fixtures that will be involved. The plumber will be involved through the setting of the sink, fixtures, and all appliances requiring water to operate. When choosing a kitchen sink, whether it is a drop in model or an undermount, you can never go wrong with a good grade of stainless steel. These sinks never go out of style and you can outfit them with any color and kind of faucet that you see fit.
Moving on to the fine cabinetry for the project, you are limited by what you have budgeted for. Medium grade oak cabinets will cost you $160 per linear foot. Even if your budget is tightening and you need to install IKEA cabinets you will still need a professional cabinet installer to correctly set out your new cabinet line. If the intent of your upgrade is to increase your accessibility by via an ADA remodel, the new cabinets will most likely have to be custom made. These alterations should be done by a qualified residential construction contractor who is accomplished in dealing with the local ADA codes.
There are many textured plastic laminates available today that will help keep your project costs in the black. The premium grades of laminate counter tops will still cost $45 per linear foot but that's a far cry better than $100 per square foot for premium granite. Back splashes can either match or be totally different from the surface of the counter top. Tile patterns and designs blend well with any chosen counter top surface.
The painting of the walls and ceiling following the drywall fill work can be as easy as applying a coat of paint. Faux painting, used as an upgrade for the walls, will be a highlight for any remodel. Remember to keep your color choices light and neutral to prevent making the new kitchen area appear smaller. Installed flooring will set you back around $25 per square foot according to the choices you have made. The base and trim that is used for the new project should match that used within the rest of the house in order to blend in. Good luck and be sensible staying within your budget.
Before Picture Showing Old Cabinetry and Outdated Fluorescent Box Lighting
After (almost complete) Showing Upgraded Lighting and New Cabinetry with Island