it Time to Remodel your Kitchen?
The National Kitchen & Bath Association offers
advice on when and why to update.
homeowners think their kitchen is outdated from the looks
of their worn cabinets, dated appliances and crackled countertop.
What they may not realize is that there are many other reasons,
more important than cosmetic, why a kitchen needs to be remodeled.
The National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) offers
the following tips to help homeowners evaluate the current
condition of their kitchen and decide if the time is right
for a remodel.
Are you satisfied with the amount of counter space, cabinet
space and floor space in your kitchen? The position of your
refrigerator or shape of your counter may be taking away useful
workspace. According to the NKBA Kitchen and Bath Planning Guidelines,
when replacing a countertop or changing the shape of your kitchen,
keep in mind that a total of 158" of countertop frontage,
24" deep with at least 15" of clearance above, is
needed to accommodate all uses, including landing area, preparation/work
area and storage.
If there's more than one cook in your household, you may want
to consider making more room around the main workspace. If
you enjoy entertaining, you may want an open plan kitchen
that allows for more social interaction between the kitchen
and other rooms. According to the NKBA Kitchen Planning Guidelines,
the width of a walkway should be at least 36" and the
width of a work aisle should be at least 42" for one
cook and at least 48" for multiple cooks.
Depending on whether or not you have children, and their ages,
your kitchen may need to be remodeled. Dated appliances and
the design of your kitchen can be hazardous for young kids.
If you are in the process of extending your family, you may
want more room for cooking larger meals and lower cabinets for
easier access to children's food. Based on the NKBA Kitchen
Planning Guidelines, microwave ovens should be installed 3"
below the principal user's shoulder but no more than 54"
above the floor to avoid accidents. The NKBA also suggests avoiding
sharp corners on countertops with kids around.
If your appliances are dated, they may be costing you more
money than you expect. New technological advances with dishwashers,
disposals and refrigerators could save you a considerable
amount of money and may be well worth the investment. For
example, purchasing a dishwasher with low-energy consumption,
delay timer and economy cycle or half-load button will result
in saving water and money.
Design: Is your kitchen accessible to individuals
with disabilities? Will you be able to use your kitchen safely
as you get older? Considering these issues is vital in a kitchen
remodel. Employing Universal Design techniques in the remodel
will help assure that the space is as accessible to or useable
by all people, regardless of age, size or physical ability
without the need for adaptation or specialized design later
Thinking about adding a deck to the side or back of your house?
Incorporating a door into the layout of your kitchen would
be a great convenience for outdoor entertaining. You also
may want to rearrange the position of windows to allow more
or less sunlight or to watch your children play in the yard.
When rearranging the layout of your kitchen, according to
the NKBA guidelines, the clear opening of a doorway should
be at least 32" wide, which would require a minimum of
2'10" door. Keep in mind that a cooking surface should
never be located under an operable window.
you remodel your kitchen, make a checklist of major and minor
problems and keep notes of the features you dislike and like
the most. When it comes time to sit down with a qualified
kitchen and bath designer, they'll know exactly how to suit
your needs, taste and style. For more information about remodeling
and the safety of your kitchen, the full list of the NKBA
Kitchen and Bath Planning Guidelines or to request a free
NKBA Kitchen and Bath Consumer Workbook, and to find a qualified
NKBA professional, visit www.nkba.org or call NKBA Customer
Service at (800) THE-NKBA.
This article was submitted by David J Dietz of DJ Dietz Designs
llc of Reedsburg Wi., with permission from the NKBA. DJ Dietz
Designs llc is a member of the NKBA and has a Certified Kitchen
Designer on staff. They can be reached at 608-524-4899, or