Upgrading your Kitchen?

We spend so much time in our kitchen and lead such busy lives that we need all the help we can get with gadgets as well as ensuring the environment is a safe and hygienic space.  Having recently upgraded my kitchen I wanted to share some of the useful things I found and enlighten the reader with a few things to consider.

Being the most functional room in the house, the kitchen is utilised from morning through to the evening and as such warrants quality fittings, appliances and the latest technologies to help you in your every day life.

If like me you are looking to update a tired kitchen, I have put together a list of things to consider which I found useful in my latest renovation.

(1) Budget

Your budget is going to be the biggest determining factor in planning your kitchen upgrade because it will decide what you can and can’t afford. If you haven’t thought about budget, you should do so now. Look at how much you’ve got to spend before you start planning – there’s nothing worse than getting excited about your changes and then discovering you can’t afford them.

(2) What can you afford

Now that you know what you have available to spend on your upgrade you need to prioritise and decide what you can actually afford.  Whether that is upgrading the cupboard doors and reusing the carcasses of the old kitchen units, maybe even just upgrading the handles on the cupboard doors and using your money on new appliances, lighting or tiling.  Write down your wish list in priority order and work down the list until your money runs out!

(3)  Take careful measurements and always get at least 3 quotes

Are you going to be able to some of the work yourself or will you be requiring professional assistance.  Review what you actually need to purchase, your hard costs associated with the upgrade.  Are you sourcing most items individually either online or in local DIY stores, or are you seeking to get your whole renovation designed, supplied and installed by one company.  All the elements you need to consider, painters, plasterers, tilers, electricians, carpenters/joiners may mean that by going to one company who has all these trades in-house you can save yourself time and money, if the size of your upgrade justifies it of course.

Always research companies on-line, even from large chains in your local area – they may enjoy a good reputation nationally but what are the team who provide services in your local area like?  Word of mouth and recommendations from online forums and friends and family are always a more trustworthy guarantee.

(4) Check mains supplies locations

If you are having a major upgrade you should check where the mains gas, electric and water supplies are located as this will dictate what you have installed where.  If for example you are relocating all your worktop space to an island, where are you going to plug in your mixers and blenders? Talk to a specialist about your kitchen layout before you go ahead and buy.  Same goes for if you are treating yourself to a state of the art instantaneous hot water tap like the Zip Water Heater, to give you instant boiling or chilled filtered water, literally the best part of my kitchen and well worth the investment.

(5)  Plan your installations to suit you

Consider timings of when you have things delivered and installed or more invasive, noisy and dirty works completed.  Take into consideration school holidays, weekends, family gatherings that may have implications on what you can have done when for minimum disruption.

Remember, a few relatively inexpensive design tweeks can also significantly upgrade the look, feel and functionality of your kitchen.  A splash of paint, new tiles, new kitchen worktops, cupboards or better lighting can all make a difference, and doesn’t have to cost you thousands of pounds.

Happy shopping!

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