29 Mar 2014

The #1 Question About Kitchens EVERYONE wants to know!

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Budget graphic March 2014I’m sure you already know what the question is! How do I set an appropriate and realistic budget for a Kitchen remodel/renovation? While there are myriad variables to take into consideration, I have a formula that I have used for years that has been accurate and a helpful guideline to creating a realistic expectation for this large and somewhat daunting type of remodeling project.

So, here’s the quick and dirty: 10% to 20% of your overall home value is where you should target your investment (read “budget” but investment sounds so much better!)  for a full kitchen remodel where you are hiring a professional to do the work. In my experience, one can expect to spend 15%-20% as the most realistic amount for their investment. For example, if your home is valued at $350,000, you can expect to spend between $52,500 and $70,000 on a full kitchen remodel/renovation. This includes materials and labor with a moderate amount of construction, such as moving a non-structural wall, all the way down to your cabinet hardware selection. From that total, about 25%-30% of that cost will be cabinetry and about 50% will be the labor. The remaining 20%-25% covers other material selections such as countertop, decorative lighting, plumbing fixtures, etc.  Depending on the scope of work and your selections, this total investment amount may or may not include your appliances.

A few other factors to consider are: where you live, how old your house is, what the neighborhood dictates in cost, and how long you are planning to stay in your home. If this is a fix & flip, builder grade material choices and minimal labor are usually the ticket. If this is a 5-10 year stint, enjoy it while you are there; pick the things you like but within reason because you must consider the potential resale and return on your investment. If this is your forever home, go hog wild! Or, maybe just piglet wild. As the saying goes, everything in moderation. But, if money is no object for you, eat the whole pig!

Now that you have the ever elusive answer to that age old question…what is your first step? Survey says, always, ALWAYS, start with a plan! You can’t build a house without a blueprint so why would you tackle a detailed space like a kitchen or bathroom without one? Please don’t become one of the many people that create their own nightmare by not consulting with a professional. You may think you can’t afford one, but I can assure you that you will spend more money if you don’t hire an experienced Kitchen & Bath Designer to make your long-awaited dreams a reality…with minimal pain.

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