Be ready to cook up a mess when you’re set to renovate!
You’ve settled on a budget, made all the big decisions, you’ve found the most amazing countertops, and now it’s time for demolition. Between the huge expense of remodeling your kitchen and anticipating the finished product, it’s only natural to feel some apprehensions. Knowing what to expect can help allay your fears and prepare you for the project ahead.
1. The Dust.
Even with the most elaborate zipwalls installed, a fine layer of dust can still gather in areas far from the construction site. Projects like demolishing walls, talking apart cabinets and removing tile can produce inhalable particles which could pose threat to your family’s health. And while your crew has a solid strategy for containing and removing the dust from your home, it’s absolutely appropriate to do some kind of mitigation during the project.
Before work begins, remove everything you can from the kitchen area. If you can’t remove it, cover it completely with plastic to prevent dust and debris from getting into the cracks and crevices. Isolate the area as much as possible, put up plastic or even a temporary compression wall to help keep the rest of your home safe. Skip using the furnace and air conditioner as much as you can, or completely block the warm-air and cold-air returns in the kitchen to avoid pulling dust from the construction site out.
2. The Noise.
From whining saws to scratching sanders, thumping nail guns and growling compressors, the noise will be incessant. If you have youngsters, find a place far from the construction area for naptime. Working from home or catching up on some light reading in rooms near the kitchen probably aren’t realistic expectations either.
3. The Time.
Don’t be fooled by the highlight reels you see on TV, a kitchen remodel takes time. Sure you can repaint and switch out the hardware to change the entire look in a few days, but you cannot redesign, demolish and install a fabulous new kitchen in just 48 hours. Take your time in deciding what your unique needs are during the planning and design phase. Once you know what you want, it’s time to brush up on those patience-skills. Often, measurements for countertops aren’t made until the cabinets are installed to make sure the fit is right. A kitchen is a major investment in your home, make sure you slow down and take the time to do it right.
4. The Highs.
Maybe it’s the removal of those hideous laminate countertops, or the installation of the carefully selected backsplash, it could even be the anticipation of making that first meal in your new kitchen – whatever it might be, it’s exciting! Allow yourself to be excited about each step of the project.
5. The Sighs.
You’ll be tired of the noise and answering questions. Maybe the herds of people trekking through the house has you on edge. Writing all the checks isn’t easy, either. Remodeler’s fatigue is a real thing. It takes a lot out of a person to go through a redesign but it won’t last forever. Be mindful, it can have impact on the kids’ behavior, too, because it alters their routine. Try setting up a mini-fridge, microwave and crockpot to have a little bit of stability during the process. The pain will be short-lived and so worth it once you pop open that first bottle of wine in your brand new kitchen.
6. The Delays.
People get sick, cars break down, items may be on back order – delays happen. If I had one piece of advice for a freshman remodeler it’d be to expect the unexpected. You won’t know where, you won’t know when, but there’s a good chance you’ll see something you didn’t plan. Knowing that will help you be resilient when the unforeseen shifts the schedule a bit.
7. The Party.
Once you’ve signed off to every item on the punch list, it’s time to enjoy! The renovation has been a rollercoaster of emotion, excitement laced with traces of frustration, but it’s come to a close and you’re left with an amazing kitchen to show for it. Invite your friends, contractors and designers over for a grand reveal of your new digs and get comfortable!