Kitchen and bathroom remodel advice

punkin

<font color=purple>Went through pain just to look
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
I finally bit the bullet (after almost 3 years of waffling) and hired a contractor. Now I have to pick fixtures, cabinets and floors, etc. I need advice. I like the "coastal look: with either white or gray cabinets and hardwood floors. DH likes a light wood cabinet, like something oak or maple and a tile floor. And most importantly, and to fit the budget board, it has to be something that will not look awfully dated in 10-15 years when I plan to sell my house. Also, budget-wise, there are a ton of cabinet choices in different quality levels. What's important to spend on and what is fluff?
 

Cruising Engineer

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 18, 2018
If you are not good at picking out everything to go together:
  • Set the budget and stick to it
  • If you have a full-service design store, look around and see what you like
  • Design the room for your use and not for someone in the future (a new buyer will find fault with your taste no matter what)
  • If you find a designer to work with only give them 2/3 the budget number (your budget is $60K you tell them $40K not a penny more) Both kitchens and bathrooms are change order nightmares for undisclosed problems the cost $$$$$
  • Probably should think about an electrical outlet for the toilet (it will probably need to be wifi capable in the future, the way things are changing)
Design and construct the remodels for your family use. Your million-dollar kitchen will look tacky to the next buyer in 10-15 years.
 


Cruising Engineer

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 18, 2018
If you are not good at picking out everything to go together:
  • Set the budget and stick to it
  • If you have a full-service design store, look around and see what you like
  • Design the room for your use and not for someone in the future (a new buyer will find fault with your taste no matter what)
  • If you find a designer to work with only give them 2/3 the budget number (your budget is $60K you tell them $40K not a penny more) Both kitchens and bathrooms are change order nightmares for undisclosed problems that cost $$$$$
  • Probably should think about an electrical outlet for the toilet (it will probably need to be wifi capable in the future, the way things are changing)
Design and construct the remodels for your family use. Your million-dollar kitchen will look tacky to the next buyer in 10-15 years.
 
  • _19disnA

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 8, 2018
    ^^I agree. Don't pick out things just because some trendy designer/home remodel show thinks they are your only choices. Pick things that fit what YOU want and won't look out of style in 5 years. Trendy design shows don't care how easy something is to maintain/how practical it will be. Something trendy today will look outdated in 5 years and need to be updated again.

    I would not put hardwood flooring in any high traffic areas or places where water might frequently splash on the floor (like a bathroom). The finish on wood floors is easily damaged from water. Wood flooring scratches easily and is virutally impossible to repair. Tile is a much more reliable product and easier to maintain in those rooms.
     

    tiggerluver12

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 22, 2006
    We have hardwood in our kitchen and love it. Hate my tile in the bathroom.

    Concerning kitchen cabinets, know that “white” will get dirty and show that dirt easily. Although it is very trendy right now and looks beautiful if paired correctly with the right counter tops and backsplash tile.

    Pick what works for you and your family!!
     

    OrangeBirdGirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 3, 2014
    In our home we put "real" wood flooring in the kitchen along with other areas. I hate it. It is not durable enough. Dropped canned goods and I get a small dent on the floor so I'd stay away from "real" wood. There are quite a few engineered woods or LVP (luxury vinyl plank) that look great and are supposed to be durable.

    Another thing to point out is in cabinetry some people try to save money and do not put backs on their cabinets. You would have the back of your cabinet being the wall. I am not sure how much money it saves. But when we were house shopping some spec homes had this and we stayed away form those homes. We figured if them skimped on that, what else did they skimp on.

    Good luck with your renovations!
     

    TwoMisfits

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 21, 2002
    We have hardwood in our kitchen and love it. Hate my tile in the bathroom.

    Concerning kitchen cabinets, know that “white” will get dirty and show that dirt easily. Although it is very trendy right now and looks beautiful if paired correctly with the right counter tops and backsplash tile.

    Pick what works for you and your family!!
    I HATE tile...but I wouldn't put wood in a bathroom either...if you just want the wood look, get vinyl - it's pennies on the dollar vs the other 2, it's the easiest upkeep, and only you will know:). Save your money for features you might want (like a luxury tub/shower:)...
     
  • starry_solo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 19, 2010
    I'm redoing the kitchen and likely bathrooms. Just the flooring. We have medium maple cabinets so likely going with stone type flooring. Either vinyl planks or tile
     

    QueenIsabella

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 17, 2016
    We did a complete, to-the-studs kitchen remodel about 18 months ago. The most important thing is, you need the kitchen that will make YOU happy, not the kitchen that's the trendiest or will give the best resale value or looks like a magazine cover. That varies from person to person. Also, you want to put money into things that matter TO YOU--I put in quartz countertops, versus the more trendy (and expensive) granite, because they stand up better to spills and young chefs (I have two). We have an engineered-wood floor and white cabinets. We went upscale on the dishwasher (family of 6) and a range with an induction cooktop and convection oven, because we cook a LOT.

    I wouldn't give a thought to selling in 10-15 years--I guarantee, your kitchen will seem dated and/or tired by then.

    Design elements we love--we took out a peninsula and put in a big island. The end of the island has a dog feeding station. We splurged on a fancy backsplash that looks amazing. In fact, our contractor is remodeling his own house, and he stole the backsplash and dog station idea. He wanted to copy the countertop, but they no longer make it. He works on a ton of high-end homes--we live near some pricey developments--so he could have "stolen" ideas from anyone, but he liked that we thought of the family we have and our usage, not what looked fashionable.

    As far as budget goes--if this is the room that you live in, have as big a budget as you can manage. I had to keep reminding myself that I was going to hate myself if I cheaped out, because I LIVE in the kitchen, KWIM? I saved money elsewhere (family room, master bath, etc. I don't spend more time than I have to in the master bath).
     

    barkley

    DIS Veteran<br><font color=orange>If I ever have a
    Joined
    Apr 6, 2004
    for the kitchen-pullouts in the cabinets, if you go with granite counter tops then get a compressed granite sink (love mine-no stains like porcelain and no water spots like stainless steel). for bathroom-consider having an outlet installed INSIDE the medicine cabinet. great for electric shaver or toothbrush to keep it off the counter.
     
  • punkin

    <font color=purple>Went through pain just to look
    Joined
    Nov 28, 2001
    I HATE tile...but I wouldn't put wood in a bathroom either...if you just want the wood look, get vinyl - it's pennies on the dollar vs the other 2, it's the easiest upkeep, and only you will know:). Save your money for features you might want (like a luxury tub/shower:)...
    I'm only thinking wood for the kitchen. The bathroom will have tile.
     

    punkin

    <font color=purple>Went through pain just to look
    Joined
    Nov 28, 2001
    We did a complete, to-the-studs kitchen remodel about 18 months ago. The most important thing is, you need the kitchen that will make YOU happy, not the kitchen that's the trendiest or will give the best resale value or looks like a magazine cover. That varies from person to person. Also, you want to put money into things that matter TO YOU--I put in quartz countertops, versus the more trendy (and expensive) granite, because they stand up better to spills and young chefs (I have two). We have an engineered-wood floor and white cabinets. We went upscale on the dishwasher (family of 6) and a range with an induction cooktop and convection oven, because we cook a LOT.

    I wouldn't give a thought to selling in 10-15 years--I guarantee, your kitchen will seem dated and/or tired by then.

    Design elements we love--we took out a peninsula and put in a big island. The end of the island has a dog feeding station. We splurged on a fancy backsplash that looks amazing. In fact, our contractor is remodeling his own house, and he stole the backsplash and dog station idea. He wanted to copy the countertop, but they no longer make it. He works on a ton of high-end homes--we live near some pricey developments--so he could have "stolen" ideas from anyone, but he liked that we thought of the family we have and our usage, not what looked fashionable.

    As far as budget goes--if this is the room that you live in, have as big a budget as you can manage. I had to keep reminding myself that I was going to hate myself if I cheaped out, because I LIVE in the kitchen, KWIM? I saved money elsewhere (family room, master bath, etc. I don't spend more time than I have to in the master bath).
    Do you have a dog station picture? That sounds interesting. About the budget, I'm trying to keep it reasonable, while allowing for some upgrades. That's why I'm looking for opinions on the splures that are worth it.
     

    TwoMisfits

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 21, 2002
    Do you have a dog station picture? That sounds interesting. About the budget, I'm trying to keep it reasonable, while allowing for some upgrades. That's why I'm looking for opinions on the splures that are worth it.
    Splurges I found worth it in my bathroom...

    A luxury shower
    An electrical upgrade with added outlets, LED lighting, and a bathroom fan (somehow my bathroom never had one)
    A customized storage shower bench in my bump out window
    Nice real wood cabinets exactly the way I wanted it (no junk drawers, but 3 big cabinets for the sink one and a nice deep medicine type above my toilet)
    Dual tower bars, robe hooks, dual toilet paper holder with a magazine rack (stupid luxuries that kept my bathroom in order)
    A sweet comfy toilet
    A specialty ordered shower door - the shower space never had one, and it does now...night and day better
    Pull handles that fit my whole hand - I must have looked for hours for something that didn't bother me - I LOVE these now:)...
    My fully installed lit magnifying makeup mirror - has been SO useful...

    Splurges I found not worth it...
    The floor - I spent under $100 on beautiful vinyl
    The walls - paint only (another under $100, even with the "right" paint)
    The large mirror - my contractor gave me it free b/c I was happy with simple and framed in black (like my cabinets) so she stole it from another job, b/c she loved my bathroom and wanted the pics to look good, so she kinda donated that so the pics would look great
    The pricey finishes for the "pulls" and bars/hooks - baseline finish was fine with me. I have a gorgeous light grey and black bathroom and I love it (I wanted no white, and I got that b/c white stains SO easy:)...

    Biggest splurge was almost ZERO upkeep and lots of durability:)...that was my number #1 push with my contractor who used this, and my hatred of tile and white, to help steer me and find things for me:)...
     

    QueenIsabella

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 17, 2016
    496165

    Something like this (note: this isn't mine, just a picture I found that's similar). We have a small dog, so ours is shorter, and has open shelving over it. The silver dishes are literally from Walmart--we did that on purpose, so we could replace them as needed. They come out for cleaning.
     

    punkin

    <font color=purple>Went through pain just to look
    Joined
    Nov 28, 2001
    View attachment 496165

    Something like this (note: this isn't mine, just a picture I found that's similar). We have a small dog, so ours is shorter, and has open shelving over it. The silver dishes are literally from Walmart--we did that on purpose, so we could replace them as needed. They come out for cleaning.
    that's very adorable
     

    theluckyrabbit

    Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Jul 23, 2012
    Even if you are still deciding on what you like, know what you hate! This can really help your contractor and any designers that work with you. We had photos and pages from magazines of kitchen designs/ideas/appliances/trendy looks/etc. that we knew weren't us and would never work in our home. Kept everything in a folder and brought it to all the showrooms and wherever we went shopping. Helped a lot! We could show people what we didn't want, which helped them narrow the field right away -- saved so much time! As we honed our ideas of what we did want, those pictures went in another folder. Being able to put pictures to words really helped clarify our communication with everyone.
     

    tvguy

    Question anything the facts don't support.
    Joined
    Dec 15, 2003
    Remodel it for YOU. In selling my MIL's house and my mom's using different Realtors both said in their experience that odds are the buyer will want to rip out what you did for something else. So even though you only plan to be in your house 10-15 years, do it for you and your enjoyment.
    Yesterday marked 37 years since we bought our house. It was 4 years old. It had contractor grade everything, and it managed to hold up while raising two kids and the required pets. 7 years ago we started a top to bottom remodel. Transformed it from our family home to our retirement home. We both were 56 when we started the remodel, and hopefully we'll get 30-40 years of enjoyment out of the remodeling.
    We went looked for durability in materials. So cabinets are solid wood and custom built. Counter tops are Corian. You damage Corian, you sand it, it's fixed unlike other solid surface materials. And no annual sealing Laminate flooring with a 25 year warranty everywhere except the bathrooms where we put luxury vinyl plank flooring in bathrooms. New solid core doors and moldings. New roof. Solar system.
    But we were lucky, we had no budget. Sold my mom's house so invested a little bit of that windfall in our house.
    Paid $101,000 for the house. Spent $24,000 adding on a bedroom and bathroom 25 years ago. Spent $130,000 on the remodel. Zillow says it's worth $440,000 now so even if we did decide to sell, we are $180,000 ahead.
     

    Sinderelly

    Princess
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2009
    The number one thing in a kitchen is efficiency! Take your time on the kitchen layout. We have built 2 homes, remodeled our current and getting ready to build again with Ikea cabinets. Love them! Easy on the budget, durable and all those interior fittings ❤ I love white cabinets. They are easy to clean if they get dirty. past flooring mistakes were hard wood in the kitchen and tile in the bathrooms. Having learned some valuable lessons, we are going with vinyl in the bathrooms and cork in the kitchen. It’s beautiful, softer and warmer than hardwood or tile.
     





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