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Kitchen Remodeling Research Will Reap Dividends for Years

by Susanne Clemenz

Kitchen Remodeling: Doing Your Homework

Gathering kitchen remodeling ideas is like planning a trip abroad. Experienced travelers don't come home saying "I wish I'd learned more in advance about the places we visited."

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Remodeling is expensive and long-lasting, so here's how to maximize the results of the time and money you plan to invest in your new kitchen.

Resources for Kitchen Remodeling Ideas

Here are some resources to check out before you talk with a kitchen designer, contractor, or architect:

  • Read kitchen design, architectural, and home design magazines.
  • Glance through kitchen design books from the library, book stores, building supply companies, or online book suppliers.
  • Take local home tours.
  • Visit building supply, appliance, flooring, cabinet, and lighting stores and websites.
  • Watch home remodeling TV programs like those on HGTV.
  • Search several online sites by querying "kitchen remodeling ideas." Print out and file your favorites by categories.
  • Learn to use architectural software programs, such as 3-D Home Architect.
  • Meet kitchen design consultants by getting personal references and checking your Better Business Bureau.
  • Check financing resources, such as your bank or credit union.

Be Prepared Before Meeting a Kitchen Design Consultant

  • List your major ideas, such as "We want to extend the kitchen toward the back yard," or "Make the kitchen handicap-accessible."
  • Collect brochures that feature your preferred flooring, countertops, lighting, and appliances to show the consultant. Narrowing down choices maximizes productivity with your consultant.
  • Prioritize your wishes into "must haves" and "nice, but not essential."
  • If possible, bring in all the blueprints of your existing home.

Your homework's done! Take the next step to achieving your dream kitchen by interviewing more than one consultant. Get bids from those with whom you communicate best. Enjoy the journey!

About the Author

Suzanne Clemenz designed her passive solar home and interacted with the contractors every day of the 6-month project. She started drawing floor plans and making models in the early '70s after purchasing several building lots. Recently she expanded and

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