Editorial Updates

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist: A Handy Guide for a Great Kitchen

While planning a new kitchen or going for a kitchen remodeling, you need to have a good idea of what you want. You need to have a good grasp of the entire project as well as its various little components. While kitchen professionals will do the actual work, you need to give them clear directions as to your requirements.

Here’s a handy kitchen remodeling checklist to start with.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #1: Major Decisions

Before you start your kitchen renovation project, it pays to jot down a few things you expect from your remodeled kitchen. Let the following points in your kitchen remodeling checklist guide you in the direction.

You decide whether:

  • the kitchen will have a pristine white décor overall or a dark wood color.
  • the kitchen will have a single color scheme or be mix of light and dark shades. Maybe, it can have wood cabinets and wood floors with marble counters.
  • the lighting and overall look will be sleek and minimalist, modern, or retro. Then you can choose your kitchen lighting, cabinets, and backsplashes accordingly.
  • the kitchen will have a breakfast nook or a dining area.
  • to go for standard cabinets available in furniture showrooms or hire professionals to build custom cabinetry.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #2: Kitchen Confidential

The kitchen is where you are going to be preparing food every single day.  Whether you like elaborate cooking or prefer quick cooking routines, if the kitchen fits your needs, your time in the kitchen won’t feel like a chore and may even be a fun experience.

Expectations: Your experience and expectations from your kitchen would differ depending on whether you are a Gen-Xer or a baby boomer and whether you are just starting your career versus looking to build your retirement home.

Sense of Style: Your sense of fashion will also tend to correlate with other aspects of who you are. The financial aspect is of course paramount — if you don’t run your renovation project like a tight ship, project creep may make your budgets go completely haywire.

Size: Size doesn’t matter all that much when it comes to your kitchen. A small, cozy kitchen can be intelligently designed so that the kitchen will even accommodate multiple people working simultaneously whereas a poorly planned/designed large kitchen can be a pain when everything is far apart.

Proper planning and implementation of a kitchen remodeling is important. You’ll need to have a kitchen worth showing off if you plan on inviting guests to your home.

To begin with, you can make a list of things that you currently find frustrating with regard to your kitchen and then you can plan your new kitchen to solve your problems.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #3: Kitchen Countertops

This is one of those ‘details’ that may get overlooked or you may feel inclined to yield to the kitchen designer’s suggestions. Your options for countertop profiles include eased edge, bullnose, or demi-bullnose.


Your choice of countertop profile will be linked to your choice of material to use as kitchen countertop. Countertop profiles are an aesthetic consideration — precise the sort of choices for you to make rather than to outsource to others.

Countertop Finishes

Do you want a super-glossy and reflective finish for your countertops or a more rough, non-slippery finish? You should decide on this aspect before choosing your countertop material and backsplash design and/or material.

Honed finishes will hide scratches while shiny surfaces will reveal them. Important to delve into the types of finishes available for stone countertops.

Countertop Considerations

Decide your countertop material which can be tile, stainless steel, quartzite, wood, marble, concrete or something else. This choice should be made keeping in mind your choice of flooring material. Different countertops differ from cost and maintenance perspectives.

It’s up to you whether you want to be so experimental as Steven and Casey in this report and repurpose an antique barn door into an island countertop as part of an adventurous move away from a city.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #4: Kitchen Lighting

Kitchen lighting needs to be functional and there are plenty of choices that will add to the aesthetics of your kitchen. Options for kitchen lighting include chandeliers and a variety of pendants such as blown glass pendants, circular pendants, and vintage pendants.

Kitchen lighting

Under cabinet LED lighting is very important both from a functionality standpoint as well as aesthetics.

There are different types of under cabinet lighting such as LED, fluorescent, Xenon, and Halogen. Obviously, LED is the standard lighting technology these days and there are different types of under cabinet LED lighting — strip lights and puck lights — which require different installation procedures.

LED strip lighting at the ceiling above the counter is useful as these should give uniform lighting without any shadows whatsoever. Color temp adjustable LED lights for under cabinet lighting is one more good option.

Ambient kitchen lighting options include flush and semi-flush fixtures, recessed kitchen lights, chandeliers, pendant lights, and bar lighting.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #5: Kitchen Cabinets

Lower cabinets with pull-out shelves versus just drawers: while cabinets with inside shelves may be great for aesthetics, drawers win from a functionality standpoint as it takes one step to open a drawer versus two steps to access the shelves. Drawers should be sturdy enough to be able to take the weight of your ceramic bowls, glassware, and casserole dishes.

  • Cabinet pulls that are knobs or rods with hanging ends can be hazards if there are toddlers in your household. Also, your skirts and pants can get caught in them.
  • If you use lots of spices in your cooking, then the spice cabinet should be easily accessible with spices in labeled jars to prevent confusion as to which is which.
  • A trash bin needs space too. It may be a great idea to have a specific cabinet assigned to this from the beginning.
  • Plan for where to stash all those glasses, coffee mugs, spoons, and sports bottles — these are things you keep reusing throughout the day; so, you don’t want to wash and put inside cabinets repeatedly.
  • Placement of the microwave — is it really a smart idea to put it in the lower cabinet or island? What about safety of kids and senior citizens? What if you have to lift a heavy item of cooking? Probably better to have the microwave at or near your eye level.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #6: Kitchen Sinks

Stainless, granite, copper and cast iron are among the materials you can choose from when it comes to your kitchen sinks.

Kitchen Sink

Undermount sinks can be the best solution to keep the adjoining countertop area clean as you can simply sweep stuff into the sink. But undermount sinks can also lead to stains around the faucets. Drop-in sinks can be replaced after a few years. Issue is to do with the type of sink: stainless versus porcelain. Granite/quartz countertops are also tougher to maintain than tile counters.

Depth of the sink is also an important consideration. If you are taller than usual, using the sink while being in a bent position for long can lead to backaches. Also, you may need a prep sink in addition to the washing sink.

Make the sink wide enough to accommodate two stacks of used utensils — plates and pots. Or, you can go for a double basin sink. Low divider double basin sinks can be used for this as well. An island, bar or prep sink is also useful. Drainboard and farmhouse sinks are other sink types with their own advantages.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #7: Kitchen Appliances

Refrigerator placement inside the kitchen is important — the refrigerator doors should open completely and not get blocked by any shelving, cabinets, or kitchen islands.

Dishwasher placement is also important. It should be positioned next to the sink for ease of use. Your dishwasher should not block your path when it’s open and in use. We are creatures of habit and you should keep your dishwashing habits in mind while determining a location for your dishwasher.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #8: Kitchen With a Breakfast Bar

This can be an elaborate affair or you can simply make do with a small kitchen table where you can enjoy coffee or take rest for a few minutes. You can also just extend your kitchen island and use it as a table. You can opt for a pedestal table if you need to be able to fit in more chairs. You can choose other styles to suit your requirements.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #9: Kitchen With a Dining Table

If your kitchen is large enough, it can double up as the dining area. You can choose from a wide variety of dining table materials and styles. You can have a kitchen with white cabinetry and dark flooring to create contrast and your dining table can be dark tinted.

You can opt for a sleek and modern design with the dining table itself having a glass surface. A rustic style can be accomplished by combining dark natural wood cabinetry with wood dining table. Natural wood, mahogany and more options are available.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #10: Kitchen Nooks

You can add a breakfast nook to your kitchen — preferably next to a window — to enhance the kitchen’s functionality. You can keep the kitchen nook in mind during the planning phase of your kitchen so that it fits your taste and style and also physically fits into your kitchen.

A banquette is a good way to add some seating to your kitchen and it can also double up as a storage unit if so designed. For lighting your kitchen nook, you can choose from a chandelier, wall sconces, or lamps. Area rugs under the table can give the nook area more character.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #11: Kitchen Backsplashes

Kitchen backsplashes can add personality to your kitchen. You can choose from a wide assortment of backsplash materials and finishes such as:

Moorish tiles, Moroccan tiles, Mosaic tiles, Glazed tile, Terracotta tiles, Mirrored tiles, Herringbone Pattern, Harlequin Pattern, Marble, Marble Chevron Pattern, Stainless Steel, Brushed Aluminum Tiles, Gunmetal Tiles, Black Glazed Tiles, Ceramic, Teflon-coated Wallpaper

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #12: Kitchen With a Pantry

Even the smallest kitchen will need to have a pantry to store some basic cereals, flour, sugar and other stuff. You can devote a cabinet to storing your daily cooking items and perhaps you can add some hanging shelves to the walls or the sides of cabinets where you can place the food containers.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #13: Kitchen Appliance Replacement Cycles

Your kitchen appliances are designed to go the distance. You need not waste money in buying new ones when the existing ones can be fixed with some minor repairs.

Kitchen Remodeling Checklist #13: Installing Appliance Panels

This can turn into quite an expensive endeavor or adventure as installing panels will be quite expensive because of the cost of professional labor. And these integrated panels on appliances can start showing wear and teach in just a few months. So, unless you are planning to be a YouTube cook or get on a reality TV show, those custom-fitted appliance panels can be safely overlooked.

Final Thoughts

The kitchen is the most complicated part of your house and also prone to wear to tear because of daily use. Taking good care of it will ensure you don’t incur heavy expenses in kitchen remodeling.

1 Comment

  • While planning a new kitchen or going for a kitchen remodeling, you need to have a good idea of what you want. You need to have a good grasp of the en – Victoria Blog 2019-01-09

    […] Kitchen Remodeling Checklist: A Handy Guide for a Great Kitchen […]


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *