Remodeling Your Kitchen: How to Prioritize

When people first begin thinking about remodeling their kitchen many of them will head to Pinterest and start pinning images that represent the kitchen of their dreams. While this isn’t always fiscally plausible, it can be a lot of fun. It is also a great way to get an idea of which upgrades are really important to you. For example, you may not have the budget to afford a professional six burner range but after we’ve identified a new gas range as an ideal enough times it becomes clear that new appliances are a priority.

After all of the fantasy kitchen makeover sessions have happened, it is time to prioritize our remodeling list based on want, need, and financial considerations.  This needs to be done across all sections of the remodeling spectrum, including cabinetry, flooring, appliances, and fixtures.


The types of cabinets you place in your home are probably more important than you realize. They take up the most kitchen real estate and if you don’t love the way they look and the impression they make when you first walk into the room, you are unlikely to ever be satisfied by the atmosphere. While it can be tempting to consider repainting existing cabinetry to save money, you will probably still find yourself frustrated and reluctant to utilize or showcase your remodeled kitchen if you don’t love the underlying organizational structure.

The two most important things to consider in cabinetry are functionality and beauty. Functionality includes how customized the drawers and cabinets are for your specific needs, how easy they are to open, and how effectively you are able to store your kitchen essentials. Beauty is, of course, entirely subjective. Your pre-planning session may have helped you decide you love the open industrial look or that you are craving a kitchen reminiscent of the French countryside.

With something this important, it really makes sense to work with a local company that has an established level of expertise. For example, Gillman’s Kitchens and Baths have been offering custom cabinetry in San Mateo for nearly four decades. They have raving reviews and numerous before and after images that show exactly how capable they are of providing stunning transformations.


The next most important aspect of almost all kitchen renovations are the appliances. After all, when you go into the kitchen you are typically there to choose food from the refrigerator or cook it on the stove, in the oven, or in the microwave. All of these items play a significant role in the functionality and enjoyment of your kitchen and they deserve special consideration. However, a lot of appliance makers have realized that this is an area where buyers are impulsive and they have begun to offer features that cost a lot more but that most of us simply don’t need.

For example, you may need a new stove that has a double oven to make holiday meals and large gatherings easier to prepare for. While it’s worth it to opt for a more energy efficient model if possible, do you really need the oven to work remotely via your smartphone or for the range to have extra burners and a place to keep plates warm? Only you know what you truly need, but make sure the model you are considering doesn’t double your price by supplying things you don’t need and probably don’t even really want.


Flooring is another important consideration because it needs to be something which is durable, attractive, and at least somewhat comfortable. There have been a lot of advances made in tile and stone flooring and laminate options are now remarkably beautiful and affordable. While wood and carpet are options in the kitchen, they can be much more difficult to clean in such a high traffic area and may cost more in the long-term than initial price estimates would suggest.


Fixtures are kind of like makeup and jewelry for your kitchen. You probably don’t really need to upgrade them but doing so can cause a stunning transformation for a deceptively small investment. On the other hand, if you aren’t careful you can end up spending a large chunk of your budget on impulse luxury buys that aren’t demonstrably better than the less expensive counterparts.

Be sure of what you really like before you go shopping for light and plumbing fixtures and then really take your time. The online retail space offers homeowners a wealth of options that far exceed anything a local big box store is likely to provide and often at only a fraction of the price.

Remodeling your kitchen is an exciting adventure that should be approached as such. Let your imagination go wild when you first begin planning and then become strategic in planning out the details. Give yourself the room to splurge on the areas that are most important to you by being selectively frugal when making your other remodeling decisions.

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March 23, 2018 Remodeling Your Kitchen: How to Prioritize