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Kitchen or bathroom renovation


6 things to consider when doing a bathroom or kitchen renovation

If you are ready to take the giant leap in to a kitchen and/or bathroom renovation then you have to take the first step by asking yourself the following questions:

What kind of renovation are you considering?

For example, cosmetic (paint, flooring, countertops etc.), Full cabinets, fixtures, flooring etc. Will the renovation involve structural changes or additions?

What is the purpose of the renovation?

Are you planning to renovate for resale, staying in the home long term, looking to sell in less than five years? The length of time you plan to stay in your home can directly impact the depth of a renovation and budget.

Who will do the majority of the work?

Think about the removal and demolition, clean-up, site preparation, installation, mechanical systems... the list continues.

What is your timeline to have this renovation complete?

What is your budget?

This is a big one. Many homeowners are unaware of all the aspects involved in renovating kitchens and bathrooms. These areas of the home can involve every mechanical system inside the home (plumbing, electrical, heating/cooling, venting and structural) increasing a budget substantially. If you begin a renovation without considering the impact of these systems and anticipating potential issues, you may find yourself facing unnecessary delays or worse, a massive financial shock. This is where working with a kitchen and bath specialist can not only save you time but money.

You now have a solid idea of the direction you want to go in. The next step in planning a major renovation (“major” is any renovation that disrupts the day-to-day function of your home for an extended period of time) is deciding your layout or space planning and will impact each of the questions above.

  • Are you changing the placement of fixtures, cabinets, appliances?
  • Selecting cabinets, finishes, flooring, fixtures, and appliances. This can become overwhelming and where do you start?
  • If you are changing the layout of your kitchen deciding the best way to maximize your space between storage and function can be a challenge.
  • Incorporating new features (such as islands/seating, trash/recycling centres, pantry units with pull-out shelves, vertical shelves for trays/cutting boards/baking pans, integrated appliances - refrigerators, dishwashers, ovens/double ovens/microwave, warming drawers, coffee machines, desk area, wine storage, under-counter appliances: wine coolers, dishwasher drawers, beverage centres, etc.) are often a primary reason for renovating.

These are just a few general questions to consider. There are multiple kitchen/bathroom specific questions one needs to consider before taking on either renovation task. With kitchen and bath renovations the specific needs and wants are determined by the family dynamics and primary users of each space.

Making sure you get what you want

The more planning you can do prior to demolition the more successful renovations run. Keeping on time and budget require careful coordination to the arrival of materials and scheduling trades. Being able to foresee potential problems is second nature for an experienced designer/contractor. For example, if your home was built prior to 1970 and has not undergone extensive renovations before there is a possibility of discovering lead pipes, asbestos, knob and tube wiring. Although, each of these items are manageable they do require skilled trades to address these issues. Coordinating the trades based on the ideal order for successful completion of your project combined with having all materials (building materials, cabinets, fixtures etc) ready when the trades are takes synchronization.

To keep a renovation project on task have your trades/contractors and/or a designer selected early. They will help you choose the right products for your project and make sure everything is on site prior to the start date. Keeping the renovation moving forward requires everyone to be on the same page with detailed descriptions and drawings clarifying the desired result, complete scope of work and expectations.

Wrtten by and image provided by, Natalia Pierce owner of Detail By Designer

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