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Help! Starter home in urgent need of kitchen remodel!

Jane Lastname
2 years ago
last modified: 2 years ago

Please help us with ideas for what to do with our kitchen! Our house is a 1200sq ft 3-bedroom 1-bathroom cape built in 1950 with an 11' x 12' kitchen that needs a major overhaul. The counters are disintegrating and the cabinet paint is peeling and we have a 9-month-old son who puts everything in his mouth, so we REALLY want to get moving on this. We don't want to pour more money into it than it is actually worth since we plan on selling in a few years and it's a starter home in a modest neighborhood. Please tell us your ideas for this space because we KNOW it has potential.

Above is a view into the kitchen from the dining room

Please excuse the mess- this is why we are asking for help!

Our priorities are 1) cost 2) storage space, 3) counter space and 4) functionality as an entryway (the main door opens directly into the kitchen).

We would really appreciate input on the following-

1. What is the best layout for this kitchen that maximizes storage space, counter space, and efficiency?

It's very difficult to cook in our kitchen because we lack food prep surfaces. We also lack storage for food and pots and pans so we definitely want more cabinets. We know we want to add a dishwasher (to the right of the sink?) and a microwave/vent over the stove. We are considering a) moving the refrigerator (28" wide & 30" deep) to the right of the stove, putting the dishwasher to the left of the sink, and making some type of storage for coats/bags/shoes where the refrigerator was behind the door or b) taking down the wall with the look-through to open up the kitchen into the dining room and c) keeping the current layout and adding the dishwasher to the right of the sink and cabinets below the look-through.

Besides the added cost of taking down the load bearing wall, we're worried that eliminating that wall would decrease our storage possibilities, and storage is at a premium in our small house. Also, a limiting factor is the radiator to the right of the door.

2. What materials and colors would you suggest to keep costs low and still attract buyers?

Our aesthetic plan is white raised panel cabinets, "oak" colored luxury vinyl floor that is similarly colored to our hardwood floors in the rest of the house, light blue walls, and stone-look laminate countertops (light? dark?). We were thinking of skipping backsplash. Replacing the fan and over-the-sink light but not adding additional lighting. Basically, we are going for functional and generic.

3. Any tips on how to find someone to perform the work for the best value? A couple of the contractors we spoke with seemed shady whereas a local family-owned cabinet maker/supplier has been very friendly but also seems too elaborate/expensive for a basic remodel where our main goals are cost and basic function.

We are open to any and all advice. We have so many ideas but really need some guidance. We are home almost all the time during this pandemic -there is no escaping from this kitchen that we hate- please help!

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