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A home renovation can be a daunting task, considering the cost and time involved, but it can also be immensely rewarding and increase the value of your house. The kitchen is one of the most-used areas of your home, and critical to keep updated, for your own enjoyment as well as resale value.
When undertaking a kitchen renovation, there several things to do to ensure success:
Do your research: The real estate market fluctuates often, so check out the market trends in your area. To get a great return on your investment you need a current design plan. Look into various materials and appliances, then decide if it's going to be a DIY project or if you are hiring a contractor.
Decide on a budget: The cost of a kitchen renovation can easily soar if not kept in check. After doing your research, come up with a reasonable estimate of the cost: necessities first, then adding in the extras. Don't forget to account for labor costs if you're not doing the work yourself. After the intial budget is set, it's a safe bet to add on 15 to 20 per cent for miscellaneous costs.
Use quality cabinet materials: It's normal for replacement cabinets to take up a large percentage of your budget, but don't skimp on quality. If your current cabinets and drawers are solid and in good repair you might consider refinishing them, but to get a fresh, consistent look a complete replacement is the way to go. Add good quality hinges and drawer slides that will keep cupboards closed and drawers from sticking. While style and colour are personal choices, when considering resale value it's important to have uniformity and choose complementary styles that fit in with adjacent rooms.
Choose an elegant countertop: Choose a timeless, elegant countertop. Granite is a popular choice. It's available in a variety of shades and each piece is unique. Other stone materials to consider are marble, limestone or soapstone, as they all have a classic appeal. Concrete, stained wood or stainless steel have become trendy alternatives with a modern edge. The choice you make should complement your choice in backsplash. It's not necessary to have them match completely, but they should at least coordinate.
Purchase energy-efficient appliances: A modern kitchen isn't complete without energy-efficient appliances. Look for the Energy Star label to be assured you're purchasing a "green" product. As for colour choice, stainless steel is still leading the pack and the most popular appliances combine form and function. Consider a high-wattage microwave, a gas range and a refrigerator with a built-in water filtration system and ice maker.
Lay new flooring:The kitchen is the work-horse of your house and the floor needs to be able to handle the stress. Popular choices when updating your kitchen are tile or hardwood. There are many size, colour, texture and design options with tile and it's a durable and beautiful option. Hardwood is easier on the legs, has many stain choices and is durable, but has a tendency to get scratched or damaged in the kitchen. Hardwood in your kitchen will generally blend in with the rest of your home.
Add an island:The kitchen is the heart of the home and a great way to help add to its value is by adding an island. Not only does it give you more work space, it also allows family or guests to sit nearby while you work.
There are other cosmetic changes you can make when renovating your kitchen, such as fixtures and lighting, but they can be readily replaced and generally don't add much more than aesthetic value to your home.
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