Remodel help

mrpopgunDecember 13, 2013

I've got a kitchen I desperately need help with. This is a fixer home that will become a rental in a few years. For the time being, though, it's home.

The room next to the kitchen is the small dining room. It and the kitchen are open to the Living Room. The dashed line between the living room area and dining/kitchen is where the carpet transitions to laminate flooring I will be replacing as well.

I so absolutely hate how the stove is next to the fridge is next to the sink. The fridge sticks out soooo far too. Oh, crucial detail, this is all on a slab so moving water is a no go. There is a dishwasher to the left of the sink that is not on the plan.

Any ideas? I had thought about taking the wall out between the kitchen and dining room, boxing in the fridge up against the wall between the laundry area and dining room, splitting the depth of the fridge between the kitchen/dining and then building out a small peninsula towards the living room. Thing is, I think that would absolutely require a cab depth fridge and I don't want to have to deal with that with a renter since I'd rather noth provide a fridge.

Any options greatly appreciated.

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mama goose_gw zn6OH

What style is the house? Would a banquette in the dining area look out of place? If you move the DR wall back two feet, and put the fridge there, that would leave room for the traffic from the back door. A small cart could be placed to the right of the fridge, temporarily, for landing space. That would leave a nice stretch of prep space between sink and stove.

A banquette bench could be built in behind the fridge--storage in the bench, a bonus for small house living.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 8:24AM
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What about moving the frig to the end of the bottom wall in your drawing? Then center up the range on the side wall.

I would consider removing that wall segment separating the kitchen from the eating area to open things up. Maybe rip out that wall for the laundry area and build a closet to house the washing machine and dryer.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 9:44AM
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Are you willing to move the door to the exterior? What about doing a stacked W&D? If you were to take the walls down between the laundry and eating area, move the door to the end, you'd have a nice sized space to work with for both kitchen, laundry, and eating. Combining the space into a single multi function room would be relatively easy then.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 9:57AM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

Welcome to kitchen remodel scope creep. :)

Is that counter on the lower left against a wall, or is it open to the LR? If there is an existing wall, or you're willing to have a wall there, I like gpraceman's idea of moving the fridge to that side, keeping the U-shaped kitchen. That option would work better if the shared kit/DR wall can be removed, leaving room to extend the new fridge wall a couple of feet. In that case, stove (gas pipe/220 outlet) wouldn't need to be moved, preserving the prep space.

Extending that wall would also leave room for a microwave beside the fridge, on the counter, or even better, on a shelf.

I can't warm up to the idea of the W/D being part of the DR, even in a closet. Currently, is there just enough room to open the dryer door? Removing that wall would make doing laundry easier. Your preference?

Edited for spelling and clarity.

This post was edited by mama_goose on Fri, Dec 13, 13 at 10:21

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 10:11AM
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Wow, I didn't expect so many replies and definitely not so quickly.

Banquette: I have been considering that and wondered if anyone else would suggest. It's a good option.

Fridge in bottom left of drawing: I've been thinking about this too but am concerned about the pinch in space then between the fridge and wall. I attached a pic. Do you think this is workable?

GreenDesigns: I have begun considering a complete rework of the space and yours is just that. I'm thinking though this might be more ambitious than is justified for this house. Small 1200 3/1 in a low-mid rent area. I think I want to keep my costs more minimized. Great rethink, though.

Wall: Yes, the cabs in the lower left are behind a wall between the kitchen and living room/hallway so extending it is a possibility, and a good one at that. You are correct, there is only just enough room to open the dryer door. I had even thought of stealing a foot from the dining room to open that space up a little, but don't want to open it up to the DR. I like it separate.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 1:04PM
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Here's a little guess work on moving the fridge to the DR side. Sure would be tight - looks like about 9x9. With a 36" square table, it looks like it would leave me with about 36" of space around the table for chairs and access.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 1:36PM
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What about just moving the fridge, and extending the counter at the bottom, and adding the banquette? I can't really read the drawing to see what clearances that would leave you between the two, and you want to avoid making that too tight. It wouldn't be much to change this way, and you'd get the added space that the fridge currently occupies as prep space, and that's gold!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 1:41PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

Locating the fridge on that side, without extending the wall a few feet, would restrict the corner. (Note: I said extend the wall a couple of feet, in previous post, but I think if you can squeeze 2.5 to 3' that would be better.) If you go to 4', then the new wall hides the view of the back door (for all you Feng Shui devotees ;).

If the wall isn't extended, would that leave room in the corner for the microwave? Having the MW convenient to the fridge is functional, since many items go from fridge to MW for reheating. If no room next to fridge, how about on a shelf next to stove?

Bumping the laundry room into the dining area would certainly make the laundry more functional. Once the wall comes down, you might change your mind about putting up another one.

Given the fact that this small home will soon be a rental, I like your original, budget-friendly idea, as drawn in your post of 1:36PM.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 1:44PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

I really like LWO's equally budget-friendly plan!

Using that layout, would it be feasible to move the laundry/DR wall out another foot or so, leaving ap. 3' between fridge and peninsula--close enough for the peninsula to function as landing space? Or would that be 'too much sugar for a nickel,' as my grandmother used to say. ;)

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 1:55PM
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LWO and MamaG, I think you two may have solved this riddle for me - some combo of your ideas should work. This weekend I'll pick up some big rolls of craft or butcher paper and hang it from the ceiling to get and idea of how changing the dimensions on the DR will effect the feel of the space. I've got a bunch of old apple boxes too so I'll 'extend' the cabs and see how the space would actually live.

Thank you!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 2:15PM
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Here's another idea to mull over:

Green lines denote upper cabs. Thick blue line is extended wall. Measurements are counter to counter, cab to wall, appliance front to wall.

It's not quite the budget remodel LWO suggests but the extra costs will improve the function of the home. You'll appreciate that, especially if the few years you expect to live here stretch out longer than that. Life has a way of messing with our plans. ;-)

I removed the wall between kitchen and DR, same as LWO suggested. The additional structural changes are: move and flip swing of back door; move plumbing for W/D; extend wall at the bottom end of the kitchen.

I know you wrote that you didn't want to move the plumbing because you're on a slab but it might not be prohibitive to do so and moving the washer and dryer to the end of that space means that you'd have more than about 20" in front of them. If only this space was 3" wider, you could put top-loading machines side by side with the requisite 1" clearance on each side and between them. The cab to the left of the stacked front loading W/D is floor to ceiling for storage. You can do either the stacked apartment size W/D or individual units stacked. The former is less expensive but is also has a smaller capacity.

The "l l l l" on the bottom wall denotes coat hooks.

I put a floor to ceiling 12" deep cabinet where the door used to be to give you pantry storage.

The extended lower wall of the kitchen (marked in blue) provides a spot for the fridge. This U lay-out keeps all kitchen activity out of the traffic path through the space.

The base cabs next to the fridge are pulled out from the wall, giving you a 30" deep counter and camouflaging the depth of the fridge.

I lined the far right wall of the DR with a banquette bench. You can seat up to 6 as shown or you could extend the table, bring in 2 more chairs and seat 8. The bench is 24" deep so that you can cushion the back as well as the seat. The table overhangs it by 4"

The banquette along the top DR wall abuts the hutch. The hutch can be a free-standing piece you take with you or a built-in unit. Use it as a breakfast bar, your command central or another purpose.

btw, you can do a modified, less costly version of this plan: leave the back door and W/D where they currently are. Then the only additional cost that my plan has over what LWO suggested is the extension of the bottom wall of the kitchen.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 5:13PM
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