You’ve dreamed of having a beautiful new kitchen, but also had nightmares about the remodel process. The kitchen is the most heavily used room in a house and it’s hard to think about how to survive without it for weeks or even months, depending on the extent of your remodel design. Unless you can take a long vacation, there’s no way to completely escape the stress that this temporary displacement will cause. Smart planning for how to live without a full functional kitchen will make the process smoother. Remember the big picture: the short time of inconvenience will have big rewards when your brand new kitchen is done. In the meantime, the best way to survive a kitchen remodel is by planning ahead.
Here are a few tips:
Pack Like You’re Moving
Most people have had some experience with moving and the memory of it may still linger. Yet a move is usually a good time to start over fresh. Remove everything from your kitchen including décor, window coverings and their hardware. Take inventory and donate whatever you don’t use anymore and won’t match your new kitchen. If your budget allows, you may decide it’s time for new blinds, or curtains and rods. Once you’ve established what items will be moving with you into the new kitchen, carefully wrap and box everything for transport as if you are moving. Put away things you don’t use every day into a storage area somewhere else in the house or in a shed. This is also a good time to make plans for pets to stay with friends or family or a boarding kennel if you can.
Set Up A Temporary Kitchen
You can offset some of the meal challenges by eating out, but you won’t want to do this for every meal. That would blow your budget not to mention disrupt the healthy eating routine for the family. Find an area away from the construction zone in another part of the house or on a different floor. Set up it like a temporary food prep and dining area. Think of it like camping, such as folding tables and chairs, and temporary shelving and crates for storage. Invest in disposable (preferably recyclable or compostable) plates, cups, and utensils because the kitchen will be off limits for washing dishes. Set up your temporary kitchen with small, efficient appliances such as a mini-fridge, microwave, toaster oven—and of course the coffee maker! Prepare your outdoor grill and lawn seating for use when the weather cooperates.
Ask Your Contractor
You and your contractor have probably already decided on a design plan for your new kitchen, but what is their plan for the actual remodel process? Get a schedule and timeframe. Map out the path workers will take to the kitchen. Find out what protective measures you will be responsible for to protect your home and belongings from damage. Will they place plastic or other materials in the kitchen and traffic areas to protect your floors and walls and furniture from damage? What about other areas of the house that may be impacted by construction dust and debris? Should you pull up rugs and cover furniture and remove wall hangings near the construction zone and high traffic areas used by workers? Plan what everyone’s roles will be in the preparation for the remodel to begin so that there are no surprises or a last minute scramble to get ready.
With good planning and a good contractor to help you prepare, a kitchen remodel doesn’t have to be the nightmare you fear. Your beautiful new kitchen can be a dream come true!