5 Rules for a Seamless Kitchen Remodel in Your Boston Home

The kitchen is often at the center of a home’s activity. You should enjoy cooking and eating in your kitchen, and a remodel is a great way to ensure the space accommodates you and your family’s needs–and reflects your style.

You may have ideas for your new layout and design, but there is a lot more to a remodel than stunning countertops and a beautiful backsplash. Any remodel–especially in such a diverse room as your kitchen–requires a thoughtful approach for a functional space that makes sense.

For a Successful Kitchen Remodel in Boston, Follow These Rules

Rule 1: Find Your Kitchen Designer and Contractor

The most important rule of any kitchen remodel in the Boston area is finding an experienced kitchen designer and contractor. You may want to consider hiring a design-build contractor who would handle the entire kitchen remodel from the initial concept through completion.

These professionals will visit your home to assess your kitchen space and give you ideas based on what’s possible within your layout and budget.

Before meeting with a designer and contractor, have the following information ready:

  • Measurements of your current kitchen, including total square footage.
  • Examples of kitchen designs and layouts that you like. Houzz is a great resource for inspiration, and you can create an online “look book” to share with your designer.
  • Makes and models of appliances you prefer, such as dishwashers, cooktops, and refrigerators.

 

Rule 2: Make it Your Space

Your kitchen designer will help you determine a layout that makes sense for your life, so you should take this time to consider how you use your kitchen and what renovations would provide optimal functionality.

  • Leave plenty of walking space. According to Better Homes and Gardens, walking paths throughout the kitchen should be at least 36 inches wide. Keep this measurement in mind when planning peninsulas and kitchen islands.
  • Be height-conscious. For cabinetry and appliances, you want to be aware of their function and how high they will be once installed. A below-counter microwave might make more sense for your family than an above-counter setup, and cabinets intended for dinner and glassware should be easy for everyone to access.
  • Think about how you cook. A kitchen remodel is your chance to fix design flaws in your existing kitchen that make cooking more difficult. Think about everything from the location of your island to the amount of counter space in each part of the kitchen, and areas where you need more light.
  • Put power where you need it. Nothing is more challenging for cooking than having no way to plug in an appliance where you want to use it. Make sure you have outlets where you need them–and work with your designer on creative outlet locations like inside cabinets or on your island.

 

Rule 3: Choose and Order Your New Kitchen Products

Once you’ve finalized the layout for your kitchen with your designer, it’s time to pick out the cabinets, countertops, appliances and other products for your kitchen. Your designer can help you immensely with these choices, but you want to be sure you end up with a kitchen that works for you and reflects your style.

When choosing products, take trends into account. Specific styles like apron-front sinks and matte black metal finishes are some kitchen design trends you will likely come across. While you may already have ideas for your kitchen, consider what’s popular too–you don’t want to complete your remodel and find yourself wishing you had open shelving instead of closed cabinets.

Rule 4: Prepare for Kitchen Construction

You may not realize how much you use your kitchen until it’s suddenly out of commission. Prepare yourself and your family for some kitchen-free living for the duration of your remodel by setting up a temporary kitchen in your garage, basement or elsewhere in your home.

Prepping for a kitchen remodel is also a great time to get rid of anything you no longer use–and to visit some of those restaurants you’ve been meaning to try.

Rule 5: Secure Any Required Permits

Because kitchen remodels often involve structural changes, you or your contractor will likely need to obtain a permit for the work. You certainly don’t want to do the work only to find out it will incur a fine or, worse, need to be redone.

Boston’s Inspectional Services Department is responsible for ensuring physical changes to buildings are in accordance with the designated uses for different areas of the city. Under the Massachusetts State Building Code, you may need a permit if your project includes re-construction, construction, alteration, or demolition. Because these are fairly broad categories, it’s best to check whether you need a permit, and how to obtain one. Your project can be assessed with an inspection from a building official.

Your kitchen designer and contractor will be extremely helpful in guiding you through the remodel of your Boston kitchen; however, it’s always best to be prepared and know what to expect out of the process. Following these 5 rules will help minimize stress, keep you in-the-know and result in a kitchen that is functional, beautiful, and exactly what you want!

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