You are imagining the crisp new cupboards, all your sparkling new appliances and hosting your first dinner party to showcase your dream kitchen. There were more decisions than you ever imagined getting to this point. Who knew you had preferences on door handles, style of door hinges and drawer colours? One of our recent clients commented;
“Now you ask me which handles to choose, I can’t actually remember what our kitchen cupboard handles are like at home!”.
Having your kitchen design agreed is a major achievement. However, don’t get ahead of yourself… The work is only beginning…
This sounds worrying we know. To ease your kitchen installation project, we have outlined the 5 most common aspects of the project that we find our clients tend to overlook. By sharing these tips we know that you can save time and money during your kitchen installation.
1. BUDGET FOR STRUCTURAL WORK
Most of our clients do some level of structural work to their home at the same time as installing their kitchen.
The most common examples are installing Velux windows, removing walls to open up their living space and relocating electrics and radiators.
You can see workmen measuring up for installing Velux windows in a client kitchen in the photo adjacent.
All structural work requires the attention of expert trades people.
When planning your budget be realistic about the cost of this work and speak with your kitchen supplier if you need advice on this aspect of your project. At Hannaway Hilltown we have a list of reliable trades people who we can recommend to work on these structural aspects of your kitchen project. One of your recent clients joked,
“I thought fairies would do this work!”
Often our clients do not have experience in construction and underestimate the project management of multiple trades people and timing. We feel it is important to help our clients navigate this aspect of kitchen installation.
2. MAKE SURE YOUR PROJECT TIMELINE IS REALISTIC.
When structural work is involved you can expect to be without a working kitchen for 2-6 weeks depending on the size and scale of the project. The most common structural work is the removal of a wall between the kitchen and living space. In this example the following project timeline can be expected:
Install steel beam.
Building control to inspect steel beam.
Remove current kitchen and wall tiles.
Remove kitchen floor tiles, level newly adjoining floors (Drying time 12-24 hours, during which time you cannot walk on floors.)
New plumbing and electoral positions to be prepared.
Plaster around steel beam and newly joined walls.
Paint kitchen, living room walls and ceiling.
Tile kitchen floor.
New kitchen is installed.
Worktops are measured in new kitchen to exact requirements.
New electrics and plumbing installed.
Worktops are installed.
This project timeline assumes that each task will happen smoothly. If for example, building control require additional work or do not sign off the work, then the following tasks will all need to move forward. This will require contacting the plumber, electrician, painter and kitchen supplier. The more realistic your starting timeline, the more likely you can handle unexpected delays.
One of our client’s recently said,
“Our focus was the kitchen design rather than the practicality of how the kitchen would be installed. Thankfully our designer advised on the schedule, otherwise we would have been completely in the dark.”
3. PLAN STORAGE
As part of your kitchen design make sure you have considered how storage can facilitate how you use your kitchen
As a starting point, many of our clients do a “stock take” of small appliances, cooking equipment, serving platters, vases etc. in their kitchen.
Then our designer can suggest accessible storage spaces that are both stylish and highly functional.
A client has commented,
“what I love about my new kitchen is that I no longer have awkward cupboard spaces hiding my cooking equipment. I fully use every inch of my kitchen!”
4. GET HELP FROM FRIENDS AND FAMILY!
A new kitchen is a great opportunity for a big clear out. Those drawers that store receipts, unused wedding gifts hiding in the back of cupboards and then discovering you have two mixers… When decanting your old kitchen bring in some friends and family to help wrap and move your glasses, plates, food etc. In the process donate unwanted items to your eager helpers.
One of our clients recently recommended,
“I had to pre-order empty cardboard boxes from my local supermarket. Who knew you had to do that!? The boxes were very convenient for storing my kitchen equipment and non-perishable food.”
The actual volume of the contents of your kitchen will surprise you. We definitely recommend having helpers on hand to carry your boxes of storage out of your kitchen.
5. CONSIDER YOUR FINISHING TOUCHES EARLY.
The final look of your kitchen will rely on some finishing touches. These require thought, and often negotiation with a partner! Items like light fittings for above your table and island or a new dining table may take up to 6 weeks to arrive.
One client has advised,
“Definitely order light fittings when you order your kitchen. Ours felt unfinished until our light fittings arrived four weeks after our kitchen was installed! I didn’t realise it would take so long!”
New cushions, throws and new family photos on the wall will all take time to plan. These items may seem small but they will finish the look of your kitchen and add textures and comfort to your new kitchen.