Kitchens are the most commonly remodeled part of households, especially for people who have recently moved in. While wanting to give your kitchen an overhaul is natural, you want to make sure the job is done the right way. When hiring a contractor to remodel your kitchen, there are a number of things you want to consider beforehand. If you have not read our previous blog discussing what to look for when hiring contractor, it explains many of the more general basics. But when a kitchen specifically is involved, there are some additional things to keep in mind.
Having an architectural drawing of your kitchen is a big help to both you and your contractor. This is so they know where all the electrical outlets, pipes, ventilation, and so forth are before they start working. In addition to wanting to change the tiles and surfaces, chances are one of your big reasons for remodeling is your need for more cooking space or more storage. Figure these out first and prioritize them so your contractor knows exactly how to renovate your kitchen to best suit your needs, whether you need more cabinets, a wider stove, enough space for more than one person to cook, etc.
Of course, cost is also a big factor, and certain materials that are more expensive may not necessarily be better. For example, This Old House advises to limit the use of granite to only the most necessary surfaces. While popular and heat resistant, granite is extremely pricey, and ceramic tile will get the job done just as well in less visible areas. HGTV recommends that the price for stone countertops is well worth it, especially if one is in the middle of your kitchen, but feel free to save costs elsewhere. At the same time, however, you should value the input of your general contractor, as while kitchens are the most commonly remodeled rooms, they are also one of the more complex ones.
There are also a number of common mistakes you want to avoid. For appliances like stoves and refrigerators, do not buy anything without a warranty, especially since you will be using these appliances often. When comparing bids from contractors, do not just get an overall figure. Get individual figures for countertops, flooring, lighting, plumbing, and cabinets to ensure you are not being scammed out of one aspect of the overall project. On the same note, be wary of suspiciously low figures among your bidders, as they may be cutting corners to sell you their work.