11 tips to avoid a kitchen remodel mistake

Redesigning your kitchen is an exciting project, but there were lots of small traps to avoid along the way.

A successful kitchen renovation combines aesthetic design with practical application. Failure to achieve both these goals can leave you disappointed and frustrated.

A great kitchen can add enormous value to a home. Today’s buyers are either looking for a modern kitchen that needs no improvement or seeking a discount on the sale price so they can use the savings to rip-and-replace.

If you’re investing in updating a kitchen, you’ll want to make sure it’s a five-star job to avoid any question of offering a discount to attract a buyer.

To help, I’ve pulled together a list of mistakes that are easy to make but just as simple to avoid when designing your new kitchen. I hope you find them useful.

  1. Forgetting small appliances – It’s fashionable these days to keep your counters clear of clutter. So, that means you need easily accessible storage for items such as the toaster, electric grill or frying and coffee-maker. If they’re difficult to access, you’ll either leave them on the countertop or stop using them.
  2. Failing to plan for sockets – We also use standalone appliances in the kitchen, and it can be frustrating if there’s nowhere convenient to plug them in. Electrical sockets are not an afterthought. Make sure they’re integral to your plan.  
  3. Going glossy – Avoid a shiny finish. It looks awesome in the showroom but once it’s installed at home, all you’ll see is fingerprints and smears of grease and soapy water. You’ll spend your life wiping everything down. 
  4. Not checking countertop height – Usually, 33 inches will be good enough. But if you’re in a house of tall or short people, then you might want to adjust this measurement. If you’re thinking of selling once the kitchen is finished, then stick to the average height.
  5. Buying the wrong stools – It’s easy to forget when buying bar stools that they need to be of a height suitable to sit next to your countertop or free-standing bar.
  6. Installing static shelving – It’s cheaper, but sliding shelving and drawers will give you more space and enhance the aesthetic. So, dig a little deeper in your pocket. It’s worth it.
  7. Putting the fridge next to the stove – There’s a design principle with kitchens that involves placing in a neat triangle your stove, fridge and sink. Avoid placing these elements of your kitchen together. If you put your fridge next to a stove, you’ll put stress on its cooling system and it will cost more to run. 
  8. Limiting wall cabinets – These are a great storage ally, and it’s a lot easier to access them than those at floor-level. Hanging cabinets will also enhance the look of the kitchen. 
  9. Overdoing open shelving – These are fine if used sparingly, otherwise your kitchen will immediately appear cluttered and disorganized. You’re giving yourself a bigger cleaning job, too as open shelves collect dust and grime. 
  10. Force-fitting furniture – Oversized furniture is unwelcome in any room but especially in a kitchen. A large dining table can wreck the aesthetic and flow you’re seeking with your new kitchen. 
  11. Picking oversized handles – It’s amazing how handles set the tone for the kitchen. If you go too big, all everyone will see in your kitchen are the enormous handles. When in doubt, go for smaller handles.