When it is time to update your home, chances are, you will consider remodeling the kitchen or bathroom. These two areas can add the most value to your home in the long run and often make a big impact on your home’s resale value. According the National Association of Realtors, the average return on investment for a minor kitchen remodel is 82.7 percent, while a major bathroom remodel and major kitchen remodel averaged 72.5 percent. Making sure that the remodeling process runs smoothly takes time and planning. Here are some guidelines to help you get started with your project and help ensure that it is a success!
Determine a Budget for Your Remodeling Project
It is a good idea to know the value of your home and the value of other homes in your neighborhood. You can access websites like zillow.com to get the approximate value of your home and homes around you. Once you know the approximate value of your home, you can then calculate the investment level of the project. The NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association) recommends spending no more than 15 percent of your home’s value for a kitchen remodel and five percent to 10 percent of your home’s value for a master bathroom remodel. You do need to consider resale when thinking about your remodeling project, but if you plan to stay in your home for five years or more, you can design the kitchen and bath to be a bit more taste specific rather than trying to design spaces that will appeal to a wide range of buyers.
Develop an Idea Book
Determine your “wish list” and develop your “idea book.” Start by gathering information by looking through design websites like houzz.com and build an online file. Looking through magazines and visiting design showrooms will also help to determine the look and finishes to which you are drawn. Collect magazine clippings, online finds and photos of designs, colors, materials and finishes that you prefer. Make a list of things that you do not like so that your design team will have a good understanding of your tastes and style. It is also a good idea to make a list of things that you want versus things you need.
Differentiating between wants and needs is imperative if you’re on a tight budget.
It’s easy to get caught up in the “quick fix” process that remodeling reality shows on TV try to portray. Well-designed kitchens and baths cannot be remodeled in a weekend, especially by a novice. It takes a lot of time – many times, months – to develop a functional design plan and select finishes for a project before construction ever begins. Many hours are devoted to fine-tuning all of the design details that must be addressed for each project. Construction documents that include space plans, wall elevations and notes detailing how finishes will be installed by the contractor or subcontractors must be
in place so that everyone working on your project knows what to do.
Gather Your Team
Since you probably work full-time at a job or are raising your family, you will probably need some assistance to accomplish the results you desire, unless you are a
100 percent do-it-yourselfer. Consider enlisting a team of professionals to help you with your remodeling project. Hiring a kitchen and bath designer certified with the National Kitchen and Bath Association can save you time, money and a lot of headache when things go wrong. A designer’s value is much greater than just aesthetic skills. A seasoned designer will typically work with a team of contractors, subcontractors and vendors that they have known for years. These long-term relationships are invaluable and ensure that problems are solved quickly and easily. When you hire a professional, you are making a decision to trust an expert to walk you through the entire process. After all, the reason you are investing in your home is because you want a different lifestyle and the value of your investment is in avoiding risk and managing a complex process so you can focus on what is most important to you: your life, your family and friends, and your time! QCBN
By Michelle Mallett
Michelle Mallett is the owner and principal designer at Mallett Design Works, a design firm specializing in customized kitchen and bath design. Michelle is a certified in kitchen and bath design by the NKBA and is an Allied Member of ASID. To discuss how Mallett Design Works can help you achieve a space that exceeds your design expectations, call Michelle at 928-699-1405. You may also visit her website at www.mallettdesignworks.com to see a full list of services and portfolio.