Five handy tips: building a dream kitchen

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Kitchen sink and all

According to realtors an outdated or shoddy kitchen with a poor layout, old fixtures and lacklustre appliances is one of the top deal breakers for potential buyers. Keeping up with the rash of current trends influencing the styles, appliances and finishes of the hottest room in any property needn’t be hard. Making a kitchen you are happy about and show off is as easy as cooking on gas, if you know what to do.

1.Budget: Fix a budget. According to the DIY Network, homeowners spend about 20 per cent of their overall construction budget on the kitchen. Once you know how much you want to spend, decide exactly what it is you want.“Talk to a designer,” advises Rick Singer of Pooley Design Studio.

“Work out exactly what it is you want in your kitchen and then talk to the designer about what needs to be done to make that happen.” Do plenty of research about the appliances and materials you’re buying and then once you’ve made a selection, stick with it.

2.Functionality: Decide what you want from your kitchen. Are you looking for a room where the family will have breakfast and dinner? Or is it simply the room where all the cooking and preparation work is done? Many people now opt for open plan kitchens that are effectively extensions of the living room. If you are an avid cook, make sure you have enough work space and surfaces. If you plan to entertain in your kitchen, consider getting a bar where people can sit around and chat while you cook.

When it comes to any kitchen’s functionality is make sure that the main workspaces (sink, refrigerator and stove) are configured in a triangular pattern. Try and ensure that the triangle’s arms don’t cut through any areas of high traffic and are not blocked by kitchen furniture. Getting the layout right means that essentials are close at hand and cooking becomes easier and less of a time consuming chore.

3.Get a plan: When remodelling your kitchen, make sure you have a clear idea of what you want. Perhaps even put a workbook together with designs and clippings you’ve seen online and in magazines, or brochures you like.

You may think that chrome fridge looks fantastic, but will it complement the rest of the kitchen? Picture how all the elements will work together.
Get a professional designer to help you out, but if that’s outside your budget, do plenty of research before you start spending.

4.Granite: Selecting the perfect granite countertop for your kitchen can be overwhelming. It’s not as though you can take a whole countertop home and try it out. Try taking a sample home for a couple of days to see how it fits. Also see what it looks like under different kinds of lighting. Another tip when choosing granite, says staff at Blue Eyes Granite, is if the kitchen is not going to be ready for a few months, revisit the store you’re going to buy the granite from. Look at your choice of granite a few times before finalising.

5.Green: You’re putting together your new kitchen and you want it to be as environmentally friendly as possible. First check what is available locally. There are a number of stores in Cayman that supply wood products – flooring, cabinets, etc,–that are from sustainable forests. If an item claims to be environmentally friendly, check that they are certified by such organisations as the Forest Stewardship Council.

Buy energy efficient appliances and lighting installations. By buying eco-friendly fridges or dishwashers, you can save on electricity bills and be kind to the environment.