Kitchen remodel

Bph2November 4, 2013

We are going to completely remodel our 27 year old kitchen. The wall (non loadbearing) between the kitchen and dining room is going to be removed. Currently, the dining is small and dark. The general contractor who did numerous repairs and painted the exterior is coming to talk to us about the remodel. We were pleased with his attention to details on the exterior. But, he is not a designer and I am wondering if I should have a kitchen designer to the job start to finish or just get a design and have a GC complete the remodel.

This is the first interior remodel we have ever done. Any tips on what to be aware of with the design and the contract?

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kudzu9

If it were me, I'd start with a design from a kitchen designer and see how happy I was. If you are satisfied and can make some basic choices about appliances and finishes, and the contractor is competent, he shouldn't need much, if any, continuing oversight and communication with the kitchen designer. That would also save you some money.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2013 at 7:58PM
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powermuffin

Post this message on the Kitchen forum, with your to-scale drawing of the rooms around the kitchen and your reasons for doing the remodel. There are kitchen designers there that do a really good job of space planning and kitchen function. I put mine up there and they came back with a plan I didn't even think possible - it solved all my problems.
Diane

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 11:11AM
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Chadoe3

I second what powermuffin said. The kitchen forum is a brilliant source of input and feedback.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 12:20PM
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Pat789

Certainly get the contractor who you have worked with to give you a bid..someone you like, trust and has attention to detail is a good find BUT if they are not experienced wiith kitchen they may not be the best choice. So get bids from several other contractors who specialize in kitchens and see how they compare. Dont let like for your existing contractor sway you too much - but dont ignore it either. If he is really good he wont take on a job he cant do a good job at. As far as teh design - this is super important. You need to be involved with every decision it is so important to get what you want. You can get a kitchen designer who is independent to work with you on the design. HD and Lowes and cabinet shops can help you with this. The GC you hire likely will buy the cabinets from someone else anyway. Take a lot of time with the design...Also - use quartz countertops if you can...they are so much better than anything else out there. No sealing, no worries about damage or anything else. And they hav emore and more patterns. If you want to get a rough estimate of the cost for your kitchen remodel try the calculator at http://www.remodelormove.com/kitchen-remodelling. as far as contracts and such - is suggest 1. dont give a deposit or if you do a very small one. Make progress payments..when demo is done - pay 10%, when all the framing and elec etc. done pay 20%, etc. pay the last 10% 3 days after all work is done and you are happy. If you want to get the job done on schedule...get the contractor to give you an schedule and after you negotiate and settel everything offer to pay them $500 if they finish on that that date or sooner. $500 is well worth getting your kitchen done sooner..and for $500 most contractors WILL finish on time!

    Bookmark   December 6, 2013 at 10:25AM
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Pat789

Certainly get the contractor who you have worked with to give you a bid..someone you like, trust and has attention to detail is a good find BUT if they are not experienced wiith kitchen they may not be the best choice. So get bids from several other contractors who specialize in kitchens and see how they compare. Dont let like for your existing contractor sway you too much - but dont ignore it either. If he is really good he wont take on a job he cant do a good job at. As far as teh design - this is super important. You need to be involved with every decision it is so important to get what you want. You can get a kitchen designer who is independent to work with you on the design. HD and Lowes and cabinet shops can help you with this. The GC you hire likely will buy the cabinets from someone else anyway. Take a lot of time with the design...Also - use quartz countertops if you can...they are so much better than anything else out there. No sealing, no worries about damage or anything else. And they hav emore and more patterns. If you want to get a rough estimate of the cost for your kitchen remodel try the calculator at http://www.remodelormove.com/kitchen-remodelling. as far as contracts and such - is suggest 1. dont give a deposit or if you do a very small one. Make progress payments..when demo is done - pay 10%, when all the framing and elec etc. done pay 20%, etc. pay the last 10% 3 days after all work is done and you are happy. If you want to get the job done on schedule...get the contractor to give you an schedule and after you negotiate and settel everything offer to pay them $500 if they finish on that that date or sooner. $500 is well worth getting your kitchen done sooner..and for $500 most contractors WILL finish on time!

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.remodelormove.com/kitchen-remodelling

    Bookmark   December 6, 2013 at 10:26AM
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ajw_in_va

We just did a similar remodel, where we removed the wall between kitchen and dining. We also then swapped the dining room and den, to create a great room with fireplace and TV, and moved the dining room to the former den. We're really happy with how it turned out, although the construction process was really painful.

We used a contractor that had good general remodeling and cabinetry experience. But, if i had to do it again, i would have had a kitchen specialist advise on specific kitchen design ideas. I would have had my contractor do all the major building (i.e. remove walls, build cabinet boxes, etc.), then work with the kitchen specialist again for all the cabinet components, etc. Our contractor had budgeted $1,500 for all drawers, inserts and components, and we found that just a few pieces could cost that much. It turned into a nightmare trying to work with them to get what we wanted. Also, if any of that is included in your project contract, make sure its very clearly specified exactly what each cabinet will contain - seems like a lot of detail, but will prevent differing expectations of what's included.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2013 at 4:35PM
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ajw_in_va

Oh, one more thing. Many of the cabinet components come in standard sizes, and if they need to be custom built, they get way more expensive. So, make sure any custom-built cabinets are in standard sizes so that you can buy standard size components. Our builder made ours an odd depth, and we could not find any components that fit - all were either too big to fit, or too small and wasted space. We ended up having to custom build all drawers, inserts, etc. (well, our builder did on his dime.)

This is the sort of thing a kitchen specialist would be able to advise about.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2013 at 4:46PM
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Bph2

Thanks for the advice. I will be contacting kitchen designers (3). I am concerned about the mess and people in my house. I did not like having the contractor's crew all around the outside of the house this summer, even though they were quiet, polite and respectful. But that is my problem and I will have to deal with this.

I am sure I will have more questions as the process begins. Thanks for being here.

This is a picture I took of the kitchen from the foyer.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2013 at 9:29AM
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debrak2008

Post in the kitchen forum.
Check out the link attached. Lots of info but worth the time to read through.

Here is a link that might be useful: new to kitchens

    Bookmark   December 9, 2013 at 3:36PM
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