The kitchen has gone from a place reserved for those responsible for meal prep to the primary social center of the home. Gone are the days when the living room was the number one gathering place. The kitchen has taken over. Perhaps that’s why this room has gotten so much attention in recent years. Homeowners do more than 10.2 million kitchen remodels every year, not to mention 14.2 million bathroom remodels. These spaces have a special place in our hearts. When deciding what to keep in mind while doing your kitchen remodel, the list of priorities and options can get confusing. Here are some ideas that can help shape your thinking around a kitchen remodel.
Cut Down on Traffic
Because the kitchen is such a social hub, there is bound to be a flow of traffic. However, an issue arises when the “flow” stops flowing. Traffic jams in the kitchen are enough to disrupt the comfortable vibe at best or cause a drop or spill at worst. For this reason, it is important to make sure people can move through the kitchen freely without having to worry about running into someone else. This involves careful planning. For example, the stove needs to have adequate space around it for the chef to operate freely and a passerby to move behind him or her. Placing an island too close to the primary cooking space could inhibit that motion. At the same time, in many households, priority may be given to the function of the island in a kitchen remodel. If that space needs to be central to the function of the kitchen, it should be given priority.
This would involve calculating the amount of space each person who will be sitting, standing or slouching over the island will need. While there are measurements and figures you can find online, you have to decide what is best for you and your kitchen remodel. The sizes of the people in the family will play a big role, as will whether they prefer to sit or stand, walk around or perch in front of the TV, etc. A good rule of thumb is to think about “family first.” You can make an evening of it. Before calling a kitchen remodeling contractor, sit down with your family and get an idea as to how each person sees the remodeled space functioning. Once everyone’s input has been gathered, it will be easier to make decisions conducive to managing the flow of traffic.
Proper Placement of the Stove
In reality, the stove can go anywhere, but you will save money if you keep it along an exterior wall. The stove needs to be properly vented and getting the fumes out of the building is far easier if the stove is on an exterior wall, which will allow for the venting pipe to easily extend outside.
However, with recent developments in venting methods. You can also have the stove in a central location—even on an island. While the venting process may not be as straightforward, there are some good options. You can have a venting system that sucks the fumes downward and pumps them out of the house. You can also have an overhead hood that extends up and out of the roof or into an elbow-jointed pipe that outputs through an exterior wall. There are some key advantages to having a centralized stove setup. An efficient kitchen triangle is far easier to attain if the stove is in the middle of the space. The triangle is that which has its three points at each of the following spots: the stove, the sink, and the refrigerator. Another benefit is that it allows the person doing the cooking to interact with everyone else without having their back to the crowd. So although there may be slightly more expense involved if you have a centralized stove in your kitchen remodel, it could certainly be worth it.
Find the Right Remodeling Contractor
Experience is perhaps never more important than when doing a kitchen remodel. Regular home remodeling contractors may be able to do a decent job, but to leave it up to a general contractor involves more risk than you may want to take on. Go with a pro, and get it done right.