The Ultimate Guide How to Renovate your Kitchen: Breathing New Life into Your Heart of the Home

Do I need an architect to renovate my kitchen?

If you’re thinking about how to renovate your kitchen, you may be wondering if you need an architect to help you with the process. While you may not need an architect in most cases, it’s worth consulting with one. You will benefit from her experience to optimize your ideas and get guidance throughout the building process.

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Depending on your local laws and regulations, you may need a permit for certain changes, such as taking out walls or changing windows. If this is the case, you will need someone to sign the drawings for you and obtain the permit.

Otherwise, you are free to design, plan and build in your kitchen by yourself or with the help of a kitchen builder. You will be able to remodel your kitchen without the help of an architect. In any case, as a new kitchen might be a bigger investment, it makes sense to consult your ideas with an architect first. With her expertise, she will be able to improve your first ideas and guide you through the process. A quick chat about your needs and ideas will help her to create a few sketches and optimize your ideas. Ask for hourly rates to know what to expect.

If you’re up for the challenge and ready to tackle the project on your own, you can find my free building guide here. The guide provides clear, step-by-step instructions to support and guide you through the process. However, if you find that you need additional assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me for further guidance.

Is it worth getting an architect to renovate my kitchen?

If you’d ask me if it’s worth getting an architect to renovate your kitchen – I’d totally say yes! Your aesthetical and practical ideas will be optimized and hopefully exceed your expectations. On top of that, the building process will be much easier for you to go through with the help of an expert.

Five things I would never do as an architect in a kitchen design

As an architect, it is my responsibility to ensure that the spaces I design are not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional. The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in any home, and it is essential to get it right. I’m happy to share with you five things I would never do as an architect when designing a kitchen. These points will help you to find out how to renovate your kitchen.

1. Never Forget About the Work-Triangle

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The work triangle is a classic concept in kitchen design that suggests that the three main kitchen work areas should form a triangle. These are the sink, stove, and refrigerator. These three points of the triangle are strategically placed to minimize the distance between them. This allows for smooth and efficient movement between them and creates an efficient and functional kitchen layout. The work triangle is especially helpful when there is more than one person working in the kitchen. Otherwise there is often one standing in the way of the other.

The sink is typically positioned below a window, providing natural light and a pleasant view while doing dishes or food preparation. The stove is usually located in the center of the kitchen, serving as a focal point and a source of heat and light. The refrigerator or food storage area is typically located near the entrance to the kitchen, allowing easy access to groceries and other food items.

The remodeling of your kitchen is the right moment to think about your personal processes and needs.

2. Never Build in a Wooden Floor in the Kitchen of a Rental Unit

While an open kitchen with a wooden floor flowing from the living room may seem like a great idea, it is not always practical. Don’t get me wrong – I love the concept! But as an architect it’s my responsibility to aware your awareness… In a rental unit, you can never be sure how your tenants will take care of the floor. As a result, it may be necessary to replace part of the floor due to damage, which is not only annoying but also expensive. Additionally, the replaced part may not match the rest of the floor, which can be visible and unappealing to potential tenants.

3. Never Build in a Boring White Kitchen

A kitchen is not just a place for cooking; it is also a space for socializing and entertaining. A boring white kitchen can be dull and uninviting. As an architect, I love to play with contrasts, different colors, and materials in the kitchen. You are allowed to make a statement while integrating it within the concept of the whole apartment.

A well-designed kitchen can enhance the overall look and feel of the apartment and make it more appealing to your guests or potential tenants. That doesn’t have to mean you have to build in a colored kitchen that you are afraid of getting bored of. There are great nude or earthy tones, like a beautiful beige or a light olive green. These can look wonderful combined with non-white walls. Get inspired here.

4. Never Plan a Too-Small Sink

The most important task of a sink is to be functional. When you think about how to renovate your kitchen, is the perfect moment to re-design that important element. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to wash a tray and not have enough space to do so properly. A practical sink width starts from 60cm. If you have enough space it can also be very practical to have an even bigger one or to have two sinks placed next to each other.

How to Renovate your Kitchen - Sink Image

When planning your sink it’s important to think about the right lighting too. On one hand you want to make sure that you have enough light to see if your pans are clean. At the same time you want to avoid being blinded by its brightness or wrong position. Ideally you place a dimmable LED strip under the cupboards.

5. Never Plan Insufficient Storage Space or Forget Hidden Outlets

Storage space is crucial in any kitchen. It is essential to plan something to store your glasses, plates, kitchen machines, but also for food, spices, and sauces. If you don’t like the idea of building in upper cupboards, you might prefer to think about one or two open shelfs. They can be aesthetically pleasing and practical.

A lack of storage space can be frustrating for you or for tenants. It can make the kitchen appear cluttered and unorganized, as you might end up installing a big closet somewhere.

Nowadays, having enough hidden outlets in the kitchen is essential. As said earlier, the kitchen is not only a place for cooking, but also to socialize. People spend a lot of time in their kitchen and they will need to charge their phones, tablets, and laptops. For practical reasons while cooking a recipe on your iPad, it is essential to ensure that there are enough outlets. But especially to make your guests feel as comfortable as possible. Hidden outlets can be aesthetically pleasing and practical, and it is crucial to plan them accordingly.

Enjoy the process to renovate your kitchen!

As an architect, it is essential to design functional and aesthetically pleasing spaces that meet the needs of homeowners and tenants. When designing a kitchen, it is crucial to avoid certain pitfalls, but the creative possibilities are unlimited. By avoiding the biggest mistakes, you can renovate and design a kitchen that is not only functional but also enhances the overall look and feel of the apartment.

Think about your basic needs and have fun playing around with different layouts, materials and colors. Dream about all the amazing meals and the stories that will be created in your new kitchen!



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About Me

I spent the last decade working as an architect and building site manager in renovation and new built units. During this time I have collaborated very closely with my clients and the construction team to bring to life some truly stunning projects.

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