Feeling anxious and excited at the same time? Learn about two of the most important projects homeowners can invest in.
After successfully completing thousands of both kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects here in the Kansas City area over the years, we’re happy to share a bit of the basics you’re studying up on.
Jericho Home Improvement knows EXACTLY what it’s like to be in your shoes.
Once you decide you’re going to make a sizable investment to increase the value and indoor livability of your home, your first critical decision revolves around how you’ll get the help you need to get the work done.
Obviously, being in the trade, we don’t advise DIY’ing major overhauls – serious kitchen and bathroom remodeling should be properly planned and performed by professionals.
That said, let’s jump in.
Introduction – Getting the Most from Your Budget
Your kitchen and bathroom setup is likely unique (or perhaps it’s rather cookie cutter). Together they have their own shapes, size issues, cheap stock or outdated cabinetry, flooring, ways of utilizing space or not, nicks, scratches, and all the rest.
Start Wrapping Your Head Around Needs & Numbers
Grab a notebook and a pen, or whatever it is you’d like to use, and begin going through the kitchen and bathroom taking notes.
- …Do the sinks have enough counter space around them on both sides?
- …Is your storage space adequate, conveniently accessible and stylish?
- …How much should be replaced and what needs aren’t being met in these spaces?
- …How are the surfaces – shelves, the inside of cupboards, countertops, and flooring?
- …Is the space being utilized effectively and what will the focal points of these areas be?
- …Interested in adding space, a side-room, storage room, or new exits and entryways?
Don’t worry about costs and budgeting initially, just wrap your mind around the entirety of needs as you see them, in your own experience and from your perspectives.
Remodeling contractors will appreciate your vision.
They’ll translate it into dollars and cents and help you figure out what the best route is to get there.
Choosing Your Interior Remodeling Contractor
The #1 variable determining the ROI added to your property’s value, how enjoyable the process is, and ultimately how far your remodeling dollars go depends on the contractor you choose.
You MUST, yes MUST, allow yourself the time, energy, and headspace to do your due diligence on at least 3 solid options.
Don’t be hasty.
Don’t let anyone push you where your gut and finances aren’t comfortable.
Don’t allow yourself to feel rushed into making a decision or signing anything without first being as prudent as possible.
Start by performing a local search in your area looking to see what kind of competition you’ve got to benefit from. Hopefully there’s a healthy amount! From here the quickest way to start breaking your options down is through customer reviews, the professionalism of websites, and relevancy.
- Reviews & Testimonials: Take your time. Don’t be persuaded by either the first glowing-fantastic or super-horrible review you see. Remodeling is a tough industry, which gets more complaints each year than even auto and insurance companies because it’s a jumble of extremely subjective topics (art, aesthetics, customizations, personalizations, etc.) mixed with science, carpentry, and manufacturing. The same contractor can have people calling them The Best and The Worst thing since sliced bread at the same exact time, which is ultra-common. Be discerning.
- Contractor Websites: Once reviews help you narrow the field, the next step is checking out websites to see which are the most professional. Not that the sites need to be extra-modern and fancy with perfection down to every pixelated detail, but you honestly can tell a lot about a remodeling company by their website. Also, you can browse their project portfolios and galleries to see what their typical scope and style is like at the end of day.
- Trade Focus: Do you want a smaller, hyper-focused contractor who specializes in your needs, or a much bigger contractor who does a bit of everything, nearly everywhere, for almost anyone? By the numbers, your best bet is somewhere in the middle between that single contractor who shows up by themselves, and then the gigantic contracting companies with their endless stream of subcontractors and temporary workers.
Right, so let’s assume you’ve taken the time and you’ve got a small list of potentials based on their licensing and insurance of course, but their portfolios, overall web presence, and reputation as well.
Now it’s just a matter of making calls and scheduling times to meet with their consultants.
This is where the proverbial kitchen and bathroom remodeling rubber meets the road.
Gathering Quotes & Meeting Consultants
When you sit down with a home remodeling consultant, you REALLY get to see what a remodeling company is all about. Are they passionate (re: talented), honest, and a pleasure to work with?
Or, are they hard-sellers who try to pressure you into a ‘sale’ to boost their revenue?
Again, it can be really hit or miss. On the phone, the people you talk to might be an utter pleasure to deal with. And, all their reviews could go on and on about superior customer service…and still you get the dud consultant.
That’s fine. If you like the company, ask for a different consultant or just move on.
- Their inspection should be thorough and tell you FAR more about your kitchen and bathroom remodeling goals than you expected. What’s realistic and what isn’t?
- Is their quote inline with what your research tells you and the other quotes you’re getting, or is it really high or low?
- Their goal should be smooth education, not sales. Fantastic results come from you choosing what works and what inspires WITH the professional, not just you sitting there nodding your head while they rack up the costs like a shopping list.
- Their goal should be to make you happy with them as a consultant and as a representative of a remodeling company, not to get you to sign a contract.
NEVER sign anything with any remodeling consultant unless you have a mind-blowing experience that you know beyond the shadow of doubt is genuine. Even then, it might be best to sleep on it and go over the proposal in the morning.
To reiterate, they should be extremely professional, experienced, respectful, and forthcoming with knowledge, otherwise you may want to pass and try a different option.
The Basics of a Full Kitchen Remodel
Because of how insanely long and complex we could make this section, we decided to simply share with you what most folks get from us with a full kitchen remodel.
Think of it more as a framework to begin approaching your own project.
The basics of our service for Kansas City area homeowners includes:
- A brand new layout for the kitchen and/or bathroom spaces that not only meets core aesthetic desires but functional needs as well.
- Gorgeous new kitchen cabinetry that incorporates stunning wood choices and finishes that last – built to look good and stay strong.
- Custom island configuration to suit modern lifestyles where the kitchen is much more of a social and gathering place – often situated as the first thing people see.
- New fantastic countertops of stunning granite, quartz, and marble to bring the new overall design together.
- New flooring, which can be either made of beautiful hardwood options or laminate to ensure a crisp and easy-to-clean look.
- New plumbing amenities like elegant faucets, pot fillers, prep sinks, hot water dispensers, and the entire host of options.
- New under-cabinet, over-cabinet and interior lighting, also customized around the needs and structure of the space, and how it relates to surrounding spaces.
Both of the pictures of kitchens in this article (as well as the bathroom overhaul image below) are taken from our own portfolio. See if you can spot all the many small details we just mentioned.
They look insanely polished, right? That’s because they are.
But, what if you aren’t interested in a full kitchen remodel. What if you don’t plan on doing much entertaining or extravagant levels of cooking? You just need the kitchen to look and feel much better, what’s the next best option?
On Considering A Wonderful Kitchen Refinish
Here’s the difference, a kitchen refinish project can take half the time and cost half the price, but feel like so much more in terms of remodeling.
When folks try to DIY their kitchen remodel, they often look more like a refinishing project but with far less professional results afterwards.
Here’s what our typical kitchen refinish project includes:
- A 100% overhaul to the exterior looks of cabinetry without actually replacing anything.
- New countertops – also granite, quartz, and marble options.
- New tile backsplash that perfectly goes with the new countertops.
- Your wood flooring will get a new polish or refinish.
- A variety of other cosmetic changes, fixture updates, and replacements that have a dramatic impact without raising costs as high or requiring any demolition.
Together these two ways of approaching your kitchen remodel should help you cover the basics. A full remodel is quite an undertaking, but the degree to which it temporarily disrupts business as usual around the house depends on the contractor.
We use a small highly-specialized, highly-educated, and extremely experienced team who come in and take care of everything. Other contractors do things in their own way. Be sure to chat with them about their processes.
That being said, without going any deeper, let’s transition over to the bathroom remodel.
The Basics of Bathroom Remodeling
As with kitchens, a top-quality company like Jericho Home Improvement can pretty much do anything you can imagine. Want to take your bathroom from cramped and drab to ultra-chic and fabulous?
You might want to move walls and raise the ceiling; add a new bathroom to the home altogether, or just give your bathroom experience a mighty upgrade.
Again, just to keep this article on the simple side and help you get those ‘Covering the Basics’ juicing flowing, here’s the types of features we often see incorporated into our bathroom remodeling projects for homeowners like you.
- Top-Quality New Flooring: With a focus typically on ceramic, porcelain, and natural stone tile.
- Washing Area Transformations: Everything from custom spa showers and tub-to-shower conversions, to messaging hot tubs and Imperial Stone shower systems.
- Redo Lighting & Outlet Locations: Taking the boring and conventional lighting and making it, well, shine! We’re often customizing so it’s both gorgeous and functional with outlets where they make sense for you, not a predetermined layout.
- Senior & Handicapped Easy Access: Modern bathrooms tend to lean more on the easy-access side of the spectrum, hence the growing popularity of walk-in showers, showers with seating, more wide-open spaces and personalized fixtures.
- Custom Everything: How about new custom vanities, new cabinetry in the bathroom, with heated floors, and a steam room?
As you can see, there’s nothing outlandish. Bathrooms tend to be easier because the kitchen is the most social area and the one with the most traffic. Bathrooms are about privacy, staying safe around water and slippery spaces, cleanliness, and functionality.
Hopefully these are the types of basics you were looking for in terms of kitchen and bathroom remodeling. Should you be in the Kansas City area and have more questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to us.
Our specialists are always standing by and ready to fill you in on any of the specifics that were glossed over in the article for convenience. We look forward to hearing from you!Tags: bathroom remodeling, bathrooms, homeowner information, kitchen remodeling, kitchens