Here’s what they don’t tell you: there will be men in your kitchen for a few weeks, sometimes more. This is the dirty little secret of kitchen remodels. Many people who have had their kitchens remodeled, don’t like to remember this aspect of the remodeling process when they are giving a tour of their new kitchen. This is a necessary evil with remodels, and kitchen contractors are sensitive to how they are upsetting the daily flow, so they are not going to leave you without water or access to your kitchen.
There are a few things you should expect with a kitchen remodel that might help you to better prepare for the experience.
If you are having your kitchen gutted, you might be without a kitchen for a week or so. Electricians, plumbers, cabinetmakers, countertop contractors will need to be brought in. First things first:
- Take all of your dishes, silverware, food, spices, and cookware and move them to a spot
- far away from the remodel so the kitchen contractors can get to work.
If your pets have food or water bowls in the kitchen, move them elsewhere at least 7-10 days before the renovation is set to begin so that your pets will not wander into the work area once it starts.
Your kitchen remodeling professional is the last word in advice. He will know exactly what you need to do with your project. These are general guidelines for a typical kitchen remodeling project; the contractor can give you the specifics.
Your kitchen remodeler will let you know when your kitchen will be completely out of commission, when it can be used partially, and when it is fully operational even though they are still working on the cosmetics.
So you’ve decided to have the kitchen remodeled, and you think your work is done. Not so fast. Even if you have talked with a kitchen contractor and a designer, there is still some work you need to do to ensure that your remodeling process runs smoothly. This isn’t much work, but this preparation will help all parties involved.
A spare bedroom is the best place for your dishes. Basements and cellars are fine also, except that you have to walk them downstairs then back up again. If you have enough room in whichever spot you select, don’t think that you have to pack them in boxes. Lay the dishes out on the floor or on beds.
If you do pack them in boxes, pack first the items you will use the least. Try to place any breakable items on the floor so that they can’t fall anywhere.
Start packing the items that you won’t need in your kitchen one week before the project will begin. By the night before the project starts, you should have moved the last of the dishes out of the kitchen cabinets. Once the project is completed, be sure to wash all of the dishes before putting them away.
In some cases, the kitchen floors have already been redone before the kitchen remodel begins. Whether you have tile or hardwood floors, buy some carpet scraps from a carpet store and lay them over the kitchen floor. A smart idea is to tape them down with duct tape so that they won’t slide, but be careful doing this on hard wood. The adhesive might damage the finish.
If you have tile, or even for hardwood, consider getting a carpet pad to go underneath. Your kitchen contractors will be moving and using heavy objects that might mar, crack, or otherwise damage a finished floor. It doesn’t matter what these scraps look like. They are purely functional.
Your contractors and sub-contractors will have to park somewhere near or on your property. If you have things that might be in their path to the house, your cars for example, move them elsewhere. You can always move them back when they leave. This will let your contractors know as soon as they arrive that you are doing the extra little things to make their job easier.
On your refrigerator there are school pictures, good grades, postcards from friends, wedding announcements, and other things of value that you have placed where anyone can see. Don’t forget to move these things, even if the contractors are just going to move your refrigerator into another room. Also, if there are any trinkets, plants, or other items on the kitchen window or on the window ledge, move them as well.
The overall goal is two part. First, you want to move everything of value or anything that can be damaged someplace safe. Second, you want your contractors to have an easy place to work in, where they don’t have to worry about tiptoeing around certain things or damaging others. Kitchen contractors work best when they don’t have to think about anything but their own work. By taking these steps, and any others you may have come up with, you will ensure a smooth start to the remodeling process.