Face Your Kitchen
Your Guide to Kitchen Cabinet Refacing

Choose Wisely: 5 Tips for Making Good Decisions about Your Kitchen Remodel

by Melissa Bullard
Face Your Kitchen Columnist

For some who reface their kitchens, the choices are easy. They've always wanted cherry-wood cabinets or they have the budget to install that high end granite countertop they've always wanted. For others, the choices are more difficult. Is it better to paint the cabinets or install new wood doors, drawer fronts, and veneers? Should you go with a countertop that is cheap and low-maintenance, such as laminate, or a nicer countertop that takes more maintenance?

Five Tips for Making Good Decisions about Your Kitchen Reface or Remodel

  1. Make a list. What's important in your kitchen? That depends on how often you cook, whether you bake from scratch, how big your family is, and other factors. Once you know what's important, you can create a list of "must-haves" as well as a "wish list." This can help you prioritize your kitchen reface or remodel and stay within your budget.
  2. Be realistic about your budget. Now (ahead of the job) is the time to decide what you're truly willing to spend on a kitchen remodel. Do you just want to update the look? You could reface the cabinets and spend a little less. However, if you really want a full-scale remodel and you're planning on living in your home for a while, it might be better to spend some time saving up to be able to afford the kitchen you truly want.
  3. Be realistic about the type of homeowner you are. Some people enjoy maintenance. Caring for floors, cars, and appliances comes naturally to them. For others, the thought of having to seal countertops, even once a year, is irritating. So choose your materials knowing how much time you're willing to put in on maintenance.
  4. Make the big decisions first. Cabinets, countertops, appliances--these kitchen elements are not only essential to functionality, but they also take up more visual and physical space than anything else. So choose these first, and leave smaller details like backsplashes, lighting, and paint for later.
  5. Do your research or hire an expert. You want to enjoy your kitchen for years to come, so avoid regret and wasted time and money by keeping yourself informed. If you aren't gifted at interior design or home improvement, you may want to hire a licensed contractor or interior designer. These professionals can help you when you're making decisions because they have the experience and training to know what should work in the long run.

If you find yourself struggling with basic choices, try these five tips for making good decisions about your kitchen.

About the Author
Melissa Bullard earned a Bachelor's degree in English Literature, then a Master's Degree in Spanish Language and Literatures from the University of Nevada, Reno. She has taught writing, literature, and Spanish classes, and is currently working as a fre

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